Decorating you home can be overwhelming if you have no idea where to start. Follow these 10 steps to guide you on how to decorate without getting overwhelmed.
Do you find yourself saying or thinking “Help! I don’t know how to decorate my home!”? I hear you, friend. Do you spend hours browsing the gorgeous home decor of Pinterest and turn away asking yourself “how do they do it? ” Let’s face it. Decorating can be overwhelming, especially if you have no idea where to start. These 10 steps will help you learn how to decorate without getting overwhelmed.
When we moved into a large 3 bedroom rental home shortly after moving to Bend, I stared at the blank slate for weeks. To me, there was nothing more daunting than the task of decorating this huge, empty house. Heck, even decorating our little fixer upper that we purchased after renting has been a challenge.
So you have two options if you’re stuck and and find yourself saying “Help! I don’t know how to decorate my home”.
- You can run away and hide under a blanket, hoping that someday Joanna Gaines will knock on your door and say that she wants to decorate your house for you (someone PUH-lease give her my address).
- Or you can use these simple steps to learn how to decorate without getting overwhelmed.
This guide on how to decorate without getting overwhelmed contains affiliate links, but nothing that I wouldn’t wholeheartedly recommend anyway! Read my full disclosure here.
How To Decorate Without Getting Overwhelmed – 10 Simple Steps
1. Quit doubting yourself.
You will probably find that you are your own biggest roadblock on your journey to decorate your home (I know I was…and still am). Suzy Kassem said it best when she said: “Doubt kills more dreams than failure ever will.” Before you begin, you need to give up perfectionism and realize that to discover your home decor style, you’re probably going to make mistakes. And that is ok.
2. Don’t be afraid to try new things in your home decor.
Many times, it is the unexpected that makes a room really stand out. Learning to decorate like a pro involves a ton of trial and error. Don’t afraid to try every combination of decor before getting it just right.
In fact, when I’m planning my wall decor, I usually lay every that I plan on hanging on the walls out on the floor first to play around with different combinations. Then, I typically have my wonderful hubby hold it up on the wall so I can visualize. If it is possible, I always use velcro command strips for wall decor. They are your best friend because you don’t have to commit to nailing a big hole in the wall if you’re not too sure that you will like the piece right there. Sometimes you can’t use the command strips. In those cases, I use this simple method of how to hang a picture the easy way – seriously, this will change your life.
3. Take it one room at a time.
There’s nothing more discouraging than feeling like you have to figure it out how to decorate your entire house right now (especially if you are just moving in and starting with a blank slate like I was). Turn on your blinders and keep your sights focused on one room at a time.
Start with room where you spend most of your time, like the living room or kitchen. Another idea is to avoid starting with room that is giving you the biggest headache or needs the most amount of work. It’s always better to start with a small success instead, so you walk feeling encouraged rather than lost all over again.
4. Make a list of the essentials for your room.
Are there any big furniture pieces you need to buy (or make)? What items do you already have on hand that want to incorporate? Does your room need a rug? Maybe you need creative storage solutions. This list will be your starting point of what to prioritize and focus on when decorating your room.
5. Prioritize your list.
Rank every single item on the list that you made. There are NO ties. What is the single most important thing to you in the room? What are the things that you would like to have in the room, but aren’t necessary?
6. Start a Pinterest board for your first room.
Pinterest can be a very effective tool for decorating your home. You can read my guide on how to use Pinterest to discover your home decor style here. Essentially, the goal for your room’s Pinterest board is to start developing the overall look and feel of your room.
7. Know when to stop pinning and start doing.
Although Pinterest can be a very powerful tool for home decor, in order to learn how to decorate like a pro you need to PUT. DOWN. THE. PINTEREST. If you don’t eventually stop pinning and start doing, you will get sucked into the rabbit hole of Pinterest. And I’ve been at the bottom of that rabbit hole friends, you’ll be lost, confused and discouraged.
If you feel like you’re stuck pinning, my best advice for you is to just start decorating! Starting can be half the battle when you are facing something daunting, like decorating your home.
8. Make a mood board.
Now is a great time to create a mood board for your room. A mood board is a visual plan for the decor of your room. Mood boards are great jumping points for you to move from pinning decor inspiration pictures to planning the decor for your room. If you are a visual person, this can help you tremendously on your journey to learn how to decorate!
For those of you that want to create your home decor mood board electronically, Canva is a great FREE online graphic design website where you can arrange the photos together. If that sounds overwhelming, don’t be afraid to kick it back old school. Grab the scissors and a glue stick and make your mood board just like you used to make collages!
For your mood board, you definitely want to compile pictures of everything on your list that you prioritized earlier in Step 5. If you are still shopping around for your pieces, you can add photos of items that you like or ones that inspire you. Creating mood boards for home decor helps me figure out how everything looks together so there is a cohesive look.
Quick tip: If you are looking for a quick way to see how things look together, save photos and then open them up on your desktop. This works great for items that will pair together like throw pillows on a bed or pieces for a gallery wall.
<< Here’s an example of a mood board I made for our baby boy woodland rustic nursery!
9. Layer in your home decor.
One of the things that really helps me figure out how to decorate without getting overwhelmed is really breaking it down. I love to think of my home decor for each room as layers.
- Layer 1: Base
- Layer 2: Furniture
- Layer 3: Texture
- Layer 4: Walls
- Layer 5: Style
This may sound a bit confusing, but don’t worry! The last thing I want to do is confuse you, so I wrote writing a WHOLE post about how to decorate with layers as a follow up to this post about how to decorate without getting overwhelmed.
10. Keep your receipts.
Here’s what I’ve learned about decorating: a good decorator is a good returner. I usually end up overbuying home decor when I’m planning a room. If I can’t use the decor somewhere else in my home, I will return it, sell it or donate it!
Unfortunately you can’t rely on Joanna Gaines knocking on your door and decorating your house for you. But don’t worry! I’m here to help you every step of the way. Seriously – I’m right by your side as you discover how to decorate without getting overwhelmed. You can find all of my “how to decorate” posts here and don’t hesitate to reach out if you have questions or need advice. When you find yourself saying help! I don’t know how to decorate my home, follow these 10 simple steps as you learn how to decorate without getting overwhelmed.