Published on September 8, 2016

it doesn’t have to be an overwhelming process.

written by  ALYSSA CLOUGH

You found your dream home, so what now? Beginning the design process can feel extremely overwhelming—and for good reason. These are big decisions you’re making! But it doesn’t have to be that stressful. Designing your home is supposed to be fun, remember? Keep reading to learn the first three steps to creating your new space.

  1. CREATE A MOODBOARD.

     First, you must think about what type of space you are looking to create—both for each individual room and your overall home. Do you want to create a calm, Mid-Century Modern-inspired space? Or an energizing eclectic space? Discovering what types of styles (yes, you can mix them) you’re drawn to can help give you a direction beyond the specifics, like “I want light wood furniture”. Browse Pinterest (and thedomino galleries, of course!) for inspiration and create a virtual (or physical) moodboard. These images can vary between room layouts you like to different colors you’re drawn to. Searching for inspiration should naturally help you nail down a preliminary color scheme and what type of furniture and accessories you’ll need, which leads us to step two…

  1. START SCOUTING. 

    Before you start scouring the Internet and real life stores for new items for your home, take stock of what you already have. What do you like about your current pieces? What do you wish were different about them? Decide what you’ll be keeping and incorporating into your new space and what you will be selling or donating. Another thing you must do before you actually start buying is to set a budget. Set it and abide by it—before you walk into any store. 

Inspired by this color palette? Good news. This sofa is available for purchase at article.com.

Now that all of the hard stuff is out of the way, it’s time to start browsing your favorite shops as well as new spots. Keyword: Browsing, not buying. It’s important to see everything that is available and compare prices between your options, as opposed to buying the first thing you see. If you have time, stop by stores in person. If you’re more rushed, check their websites first. If you’re not finding what you’re looking for, consider DIY-ing it (like these affordable, oversized art projects!).

Not sure what shops to start browsing? Check our lists of affordable places to find things for your kitchen andfurnishings for your living room. Looking to places like IKEA, Target, Wayfair, and Home Goods are no-brainers, but online destinations like Urban Outfitters also have great options. (Here are our favorite inexpensive furniture shops. You’re welcome.) Buying second hand is also getting easier and easier, thanks to these online marketplaces.

MAKE DECISIONS AND TAKE ACTION. 

You’ve done the research and now it’s time to take action! Decide on the official colors of your new walls, purchase the items that will anchor your space (whether it be a statement sofa or small piece of artwork that inspired the entire space), and get to actually decorating!

Remember, there is no pressure to finish decorating your space immediately. Designing a new home is a process and is not meant to be conquered all at once. Hopefully, your space will be ever evolving with new accessories and artwork.

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