• Robin Dobbins

7 Layers to a Well Dressed Room


Layering a room with all the appropriate elements (furnishings) doesn't have to be complicated at all. There are principles that guide good design and, when those elements are in synch, that's when you know you are on to something. Let me be clear now instead of philosophical, it's just decorating after all.


Imagine your space as a blank canvas. What would you imagine would be the FIRST layer necessary to help define the space? If you guessed paint, you would be right! Paint is an inexpensive way to transform a room, and don't forget to have fun with it. So many interesting things you can do with paint. Go find your inspiration. Now for the SECOND layer, for me, this would be lighting. Lighting is key to creating the right ambiance and tasking for the room. Without it, you are dead in the water. So, having adequate hardwired and mobile lighting will help you achieve all that you need to successfully use your space. THIRD would be the furniture. This is what I call "The Core". This is what defines the parameters of the room. With proper space planning for best function, your third layer is completed and set. Now let's add more personality to the mix, the FORTH layer would be soft goods, one of my favorites. This would be rugs, drapes, bedding, and pillows. For me this really can transform a space and make it more inviting. Keep in mind it is always a good practice to lay the rug down before the furniture is set, work smarter not harder. Now we want to balance the soft with some harder edges, so the FIFTH layer is your decorative objects. This is were you will use your own judgement on how much is too much. Me, I love going antiquing and finding unusual vintage items that give me the nostalgic feels. So, more is more for me right now. Get creative here and try some playful items that make people smile. Next we need some art on the walls for your SIXTH layer , can you imagine a life without art? I can't. Again, have some fun and get creative here with your compositions. Life is too short to be safe and conservative all the time. It's your home, express yourself! Last, but certainly not least, add your SEVENTH layer plants and flowers. Something about the greenery that really finishes off the look. Plants are a great filler and a go to of mine for an inexpensive solution for spots that need to be filled.


Thinking in layers can make your life easier when you start from a blank canvas, adding one at a time, till it's done. I hope you leave this post feeling more confident about layering your rooms. This is how you will get more depth, dimension, and personality into your style. Don't be afraid of what others might think. If you don't want to be on the cutting edge of what's trending, DON'T. Style is individual, and never apologize for who you are and what you love. You are King or Queen of your castle. Off with their heads if they don't like it. Just kidding, kind of.

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