Exclusive Designer Tips: How to Layer a Room


Ready to layer in some style to the rooms of your home?

Bone up on your decorating dexterity with these great pointers from some our favorite designers:

1. “When layering a room, start with the rug which truly grounds a room and then layer on the furniture, window treatment, lighting and art.”

Jennifer Cohler Mason proves with this stunning dining room that layering doesn’t always mean using several colors. Here she went monochromatic with jaw-dropping turquoise—“It is important to select fabrics with texture which will help to add depth to the fabrics so they are not flat,” says Jennifer.

2. ”In decorating rooms, I like using a large rug to ground the space. I often layer a large solid rug (like sisal or solid wool) on top of a smaller oriental rug to frame a seating group.”

Designer Eddie Lee knows that filling an entire room with toile is “not for everyone,” which is why he likes to balance it with, “blocks of solid coordinating colors on the upholstery for a fresh way.

3. “When layering a room, think about the contrasts of pattern, geometry, surface and sheen.”

Young Huh turned a small powder room into a jewel box fit for a queen at this year’s Kips Bay Decorator Show House with layers of both traditional and modern elements. “The beautiful [floral] Hollyhock fabric upholstered on the walls contrasts with the black patent leather wainscoting, while the ceiling shimmers in a gold metallic wall covering,” explains Young.

4. “You definitely need the final layer of beautiful art and accessories to finish a room. Art seems to be often overlooked yet it can elevate a room from ordinary to extraordinary. Accessories, books and unique finds from your travels add soul and character to a room. It tells your life story.”

The soft colors of this bedroom designed by Kriste Michelini have just the calm quality you want in a room where relaxation is most important. The soothing paint color and dreamy window treatments create a true sanctuary.

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