Part II of this fun newlyweds series is going to take you into the actual action of designing your first home. So go grab your tape measure (or buy one), and let’s get moving!
(In case you missed it: Newlyweds Guide to Designing Your First Home, Part I)
Step 1: Measure Before Buying. Seriously.
You’ve already assembled your list of must-haves. Maybe you’ve even picked out the pieces you want… but have you measured your space yet?
When designing your first home, there’s nothing more tragic than picking out a beautiful sofa and then realizing — it doesn’t fit through the door.
Awkward. Don’t let that be you! Measure the doorways. Measure the distance from walls to windows. Measure each and every living space before you click “Purchase” or swipe your credit card at HomeGoods.
Step 2. Give Deep Thought to Your Biggest Purchases
Your sofa is likely the most important piece you’ll purchase for your family room. As such, consider taking your time as you make your selection!
This goes beyond aesthetic and into the heart of durability and comfort — for both of you.
At 5'4,'' the sofa may feel great to you, but your taller (or shorter) husband might not agree!
It's possible he needs something with a higher back and seat depth. This is where asking the right questions and testing out some options can prevent you from making costly mistakes.
Step 3. Declutter BEFORE Your New Furnishings Arrive
Whether you just moved into a new space or are occupying one you shared pre-wedding, I’m willing to bet there’s at least a little clutter going on…
Wedding gifts and honey-do lists lying around? Random stacks of bills? Furniture that’s overstayed its welcome?
Give these items some love or the heave-ho before your new furnishings arrive. Trust me, it is much easier to organize a space when you’re not dodging boxes and stubbing pinky toes.
You can follow our easily digestible decluttering guide here.
Step 4: Arrange Your Furniture
This is the most difficult part and might take some practice to get it perfect, but I do have some tips that’ll help you get started.
Arrange your furniture around the focal point of your room. If you have a beautiful fireplace or mantle, an impressive window, a built-in bookcase? Those are focal points.
Place your largest piece of furniture on the largest wall in the room.
If you place it on a smaller wall, not only could it look a little cramped, but it will actually make your whole space appear smaller too… which isn’t what you want!
Flow of Traffic
Consider the flow of traffic in your space. If you know that Hubby always beelines it to the kitchen when he comes home from work, maybe you don’t want to set up an obstacle course for him… or maybe you do. ;)
In any case, pay attention to how you move in a space and style rooms that fit your lifestyle — not fight it!
Less is More
I have seen couples purchase a “family room set” because the price was reduced… and then they couldn’t fit all the pieces in their home! What started as a well-intentioned investment turned into a costly mistake.
Start small. It is easier to add more to your space than subtract what you already have.
Step 5: Accessorize
Accessories are the final touches on your space, the jewelry of the home, and the cherry on top of your sundae. (After all, it’s not really a sundae without it!)
We dedicated a whole post to accessories and styling those final touches, so I recommend you give it a read before spicing things up!
Step 6. CELEBRATE!
Okay, this isn’t so much a step as it is encouragement to celebrate your success! Why not invite some friends over to “ooh” and “ahh” and house-warm with you? Or keep it just the two of you with Netflix and some wine?
However you choose to celebrate, just remember to come back here and share a photo of your finalized space… so we can celebrate, too! Don’t mind if we do… ;)
We’ll have more helpful tips next month, but for now, we wish you so much happiness in your new home and life together. You deserve it!
Tammy + Dallas Roberts Design