A room can have a perfect palette, gorgeous furniture, and stunning window treatments, but if it’s missing this one big concept, it will look incomplete…
A finishing touch can be anything from a well-placed plant to table objects to art on the wall. After your paint, furniture, and lighting have been finalized, adding small elements to the space will help bring it all together.
This room is well-rounded and complete. Imagine the table without the objects and stack of books… the room would feel a bit empty. Imagine the walls without the framed photos that mimic the color tones of the space… it would look still look nice, but less creative and dimensional.
How to Add Finishing Touches to Your Own Space
Step 1: What Is Your Space Missing?
To know which additions will help finalize your space, you should know what you’re already working with. The first question to ask yourself is:
Is my space missing any of the 3 major design elements?
Design Element A: TEXTURE
Incorporating a variety of textures is important to your space. Too many “flat” textures will create a space that looks oddly one-dimensional; too many “high-volume” textures will have it feeling crowded or overdone.
Evaluate your space and the textures already at play (there are some examples below to help you). Are you missing textures from the flat, mid-volume, or high-volume categories?
Use your finishing touches to round out the textural components of your space. You don’t have to cover all three texture categories in your space, but you should have at least two!
- Flat: leather, wood, metal, linen, ceramic, etc.
- Mid-volume: velvet, jute, rattan, any textured metal or wood, etc.
- High-volume: cashmere, shag, fleece, mohair, etc.
Design Element B: MATERIALS
Just like texture, materials are another area where you’ll want variety. Too much metal? Cold and industrial. Too much cloth? Not grounded.
Here are some material ideas. If you find your current design leans too heavily in one direction, use your finishing touches to balance it. For example, if most of your items are in the cloth camp, try adding a sturdy counterpart, such as wood or metal to bring your design down to earth.
Design Element C: HEIGHT & DIMENSION
It’s easy to overlook the height of all the items in your space, but pieces that sit at the same eye-level will look strange — even if you can’t quite pinpoint why!
Staggering your items’ heights (and depths!) is absolutely crucial to a design that looks complete. Evaluate...
...the heights of all the items in your space. Which eye-levels could use a little love? Choose your finishing touches with this in mind.
...the depth of all the items in your space. Are your pieces all hugging the wall? Is everything aligned in a row? Break it up!
If you need high-level heights, wall-mounted pieces are nice options (like art, sconces, or clocks). For tabletop items, candlesticks and plants can add great height.
Step 2: What Design Elements Do You Have Already?
Look at the colors and shapes already working in your space and consider options for mimicking them in your finishing touches. For example, the design pattern in the trim of your window treatment can be echoed in your wall mirror or sofa pillows to create cohesion.
Step 3: Select Your Finishing Touches
Here are some standard examples of items you can use to finalize your space. The sky is nearly the limit with finishing touches, so don’t feel confined to this list. Go ahead and get creative! (And always, always save your receipts during this process.)
Candles and candleholders. Style options are endless here.
Flowers and plants, faux or real. 99% of spaces can benefit from the addition of a well-placed plant!
Throw pillows! Consider removing the original cushions that came with your furniture and adding some loose, exciting ones.
Drink coasters… because every living space should have them!
Clocks, tableside or wall-mounted.
Mirrors — double as a way to create depth.
Books! Never underestimate the visual power of a stack of books.
Step 4: Edit & Finalize Your Space
When you’re browsing finishing touches, it can be easy to get carried away by all the creative options available. To keep you focused, here are some final questions to ask yourself...
Do my finishing touches align with the room’s palette?
Does this piece make me feel happy or am I choosing it because it fits with the room?
Have I chosen too many finishing touches or is my space exactly as full as I want it?
If you’re happy with your answers to these questions, then you’re done! Don't worry, we'll leave the celebrating entirely up to you. ;)
Stay Tuned! Next month we’ll be walking you through the ins and outs of selecting the perfect lighting for your space.
Need a hand with your finishing touches? Palette? Space planning? Dallas Roberts Design can help! Contact us here.