Design Process of My Room

Pencil Friday, October 14, 2011 clock at 10:05 PM

The longer its taking to design my room, the more I feel as if I'm losing myself in the design process. Even though I'm an art major, it doesn't mean that I'm always great or successful in getting my ideas and dreams to come out into reality as I see them in my mind. So, I went rummaging around the internet, turning pages after pages in hopes of finding a free online course into interior design that actually taught you something. I had some luck and here's what I found: Creative Home Decorating Room by Room. The site is pretty good in what it offers: free worksheets and a step-by-step guide in how to decorate several rooms in your house from the bedroom to the kitchen. I've decided to use their guide as help to my room design process and I'll be posting it here as a sort of review.

Now, as a graphic designer and a web designer, I had to actually had to pry myself from clicking the little red x in the corner. But hey, like they've taught you in school, don't judge a book by it's cover. (Though the site design could seriously use some help!)

I'm not going to go through the whole entire process as some stuff I don't need, but I'll let you know what it was in case it is of some use to you. Anyways, on to step one!

Step 1: Room Planning!
You can get to this step by clicking on "Decorating Basics" under the headline of the same name on the sidebar.

This step is basically to get you prepped up for your whole design process. It's basically telling you what materials and tools you'll need to get started. Think of it as a room design kit from camera to journal to measuring tape. I luckily did this without being told. Now that I think about it, I was somehow designing a mood board! Hahaa.....I was going in the right direction unknowingly!

Now, just to let you know, this is not on the page itself, but I feel this would be the perfect time to also check out some of the worksheets on the the top navigation bar by clicking on "Workbook." (If not, no worries, as you go through the steps, she'll let you know know which worksheets to fill in when the time comes.) She offers here some excellent worksheets to help you plan your budget, room design, and just mostly organize your thoughts. I would click through all of them and see which ones would help you out the most. I did several worksheets and posted mines below if you're interested in checking them out:

Following that color analysis worksheet. I made a palette using ColourLovers to get me in the right direction.

Step 2: Drawing a Floor Plan
This step is to prep yourself on how to place your furniture and create easy traffic areas. At the bottom of this page, she gives you an exercise which is basically to fill out your room traffic worksheet (mine's above!) and that's about it. She also gives you links to furniture placement kits that range from free and 2D to pricey and life-sized. I used the cheap-o print outs from the furniture store link that she offered.

*Sugar*Roo TIP!*    You can create your own "life-sized" template just using sheets of paper or cardboard or just plain old painter's tape. Using tape, tape down the dimensions of furniture pieces you want on the floor. Didn't like it there? Just pick up the tape and move it somewhere else! No more back-breaking moving furniture!

Step 3: Analyze Your Home Traffic Patterns
This step is how to meet your furniture needs with your lifestyle needs. She shows you a couple of images comparing good traffic pattern to bad traffic pattern. I noticed that that a bad traffic pattern "pools" while a good one flows effortlessly throughout the room. When playing around with your furniture arrangement kit, I highly suggest you take pictures of them, print them out, and draw your traffic patterns over them with a marker. If it's not flowing, then the furniture placement is probably not a good one.

Feng-shui has a lot to do with this, so check out a book in your library and get some tips! For people like my case (with a bedroom that has to be an office/study and pretty much like a dorm), check out feng-shui and furniture arrangements for dorm rooms and studio apartments. You'll be surprised of all the useful stuff you find there for furniture placement. I don't really believe all of feng-shui (like "death position" and all that), but it does help you create a great amount of space and flow in your space.

Step 4: Furniture Placement
This is where the site pretty much fall shorts. She doesn't offer tips other than which piece should go in first. I feel that this is where most sites are pretty vague and design secrets and tips are left for students or those that purchase really expensive textbooks. So I went ahead and did my own research and present you with tips of my own for furniture placement in the bedroom. I started looking at magazines, furniture stores, interior design sites, and more and here are things I discovered a majority of the rooms had in common:

  1. The bed is usually the focal point.    This makes sense since bedding now comes in so many colorful options and textures and the bed usually takes up the most space in the room the eyes are bound to be drawn to it. Accentuate the wall behind that and add colorful accessories like pillows or some gorgeous nightstands to make things pop. Lighting can also play a big role too. You can place really great lighting above the bed, on the nightstands, or on the walls (like scones). Not only the beds and accessories play a role but the bed itself as well. Maybe you have a really great bed design that you'd like to highlight.

PB Teen

Wake Up Frankie

Design Hotel Secret de Paris

  1. Nightstands or some other flat surface near bed.   This of course is common sense. Read a book, drink a glass of milk before bed, or whatever it is you do, you need two things: light and someplace to set your things down on. That's where a nightstand comes in place. Lately there has been a trend of using non conventional nightstands such as chairs. Whatever you decide to use, just make sure you add it to your furniture arrangement plan if applicable.
These suitcases probably make great storage areas too.

Here's another great idea for a nightstand.

Great for minimalistic designs.

  1. Accent pieces.    Now I'm skipping past armoires, drawers, chests, and pretty much bedroom basics since you know you have to make room for that if you have them. I don't since I stuck everything in my closet. The accent pieces in the bedroom are basically furniture you can live without, but really enliven the place and gives that extra special touch. It can pretty much be anything from a chaise to an ottoman and whatnot. Take a look at the pictures below for some inspiration if you plan to stick several accent pieces in your bedroom:
Alta Moda. I spy a gazillion accent pieces!

This room uses very simple accessories. The pillows count as well vase of
flowers and the pink book on the table. Simple yet big impact.

The rug, flower vases, and painting on the wall gives the room personality.

Anyways, that's just a push into a the right direction. Check out the sites below for some free furniture arrangement 3D online.

Two links to help you get started on arranging your furniture below:
I'm going to skip the rest of the steps since that's wayyyyy ahead of me. I'm not even done painting my room yet! Check back for more as I walk you through my bedroom design process!

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