17 Getting the scale wrong
Most people buy sofas that are too large, and rugs and other furnishings that are too small for the rooms they're in. Playing with the scale of furnishings is an art; a large armoire in a small room isn't necessarily a bad thing -- if you create balance with a dark wall colour, large framed art and rich carpets. A sofa should fit on the short or long wall of a room; make sure if you place it along the short wall that you still have room for end tables on each side.
18 Collecting too much stuff
We hoard, collect and often have too many things that don't belong, so learning to edit a room is a huge lesson. The easiest way to do it is to dress a room completely and then take away 30 per cent of the accessories, such as candles, picture frames and knickknacks. That will leave room to add items as the decor develops over time.
19 Second-guessing your professional
Why would you spend money to hire a contractor, designer or architect and then allow the final decisions to be made by your friends and family? Professionals come to your project with an unbiased, workable plan; your friends and family don't.
20 Choosing the wrong colour hue
People often know what colour they want but don't pick the proper hue (lightness or darkness). A good rule of thumb: Lighter on the top, darker on the bottom. Floors are usually a darker, deeper hue than the walls; ceilings are lighter than the walls.
21 Hanging oversize family portraits in main living spaces
Save all those large framed wedding, school and family photographs for the upstairs hallway, home office and den.
23 Positioning furniture along the edges of a room
We keep moving it in, and you keep lining it up! Try dividing a long, narrow room by using the two-thirds/one-third rule: make two-thirds of your room the main seating area, and one-third a space for a desk, reading chair or piano. Don't be afraid to show the back of a chair or sofa by using the piece to divide the room.
24 Buying a chandelier that's too small
For every foot of the width of the room, multiply that number by two for the diameter -- in inches -- of the chandelier that will work in that particular room. For example, if the width of your room is 12 feet, then your chandelier should be 24 inches in diameter (12' x 2 = 24").
25 Choosing trendy-colour fabrics for long-term furnishings
Custom sofas, chairs, headboards and draperies should last many years. Opting for a trendy-colour fabric like lime green will quickly make these pieces look (and feel) outdated. Instead, choose colours that are a shade lighter or darker than your wall colour, so furnishings work well together and maintain their timeless appeal.
Image courtesy of Crate and Barrel