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A "Misfit Room"

Updated: Mar 12, 2021

Have you ever watched the cartoon movie Rudolf The Red Nosed Reindeer? Remember in that movie the island of misfit toys? Well, I call a room that isn't balanced right a "misfit room".

No need to give up on the space for a complete remodel yet, never underestimate the power of wall art and area rug. One hot mess of a room, can be made into an amazingly designed room with the right wall art, and area rug!

Have you ever walked into a room and thought, something is way off here, or maybe you just thought it didn't flow from one room to the next? I went to a client's house once that was absolutely adorable until you entered the master bathroom, where you immediately were faced with two orange vessel sinks. They literally made no sense at all in this room, as there was nothing to tie them into the room. The clients were renting this home, so the expense of changing out the bowls wasn't really an option, nor spending money on repainting the entire room, or the expense of replacing towels and area rugs. Our number one job is to protect our client, right? Protecting their dollar investment is definitely the biggest part of that part of the job.

The easiest fix of course was to add some orange into this very olive green with blue accents room, but how? Let me show you...

I painted all the colors onto canvas and then placed into this room...

Suddenly this room didn't feel so out of sorts and the vessel bowl sinks now made sense.

Literally wall art is all about symmetry of size and color, which is exactly what we go to design school to learn about and how and where to implement it uniquely for each client .

Another client, loved a sofa but once it was in their home, they felt like it didn't look right after all. When I walked into the living area, I immediately knew their area rug was the culprit in making their space a "misfit room". So, of course I went shopping...

That rug definitely ties all the rooms together!

Sometimes, my design plan has to be a bit more hands on...

Dining table just blended with the floor and made the dining space a "misfit room"...

The budget didn't allow for a new dining table. I could throw a rug down under it, but this space really wouldn't have been the better for it. So, I went to work sanding and preparing it for a new look...

Once the table top was done (picture below) I was feeling pretty proud of my hard work!

Do you see how the fireplace now ties in the new color of the table? Placement of color is important in a design. Now, this client's space was looking pretty amazing, of course adding wall art definitely helped too!

The overall finished look after side pieces, wall art, area rug, lamps, and table was in purchased, made, and/ or refinished, was simply Beautifully Done! I love designing and seeing an awesome well designed room!

The next example of a "misfit room" needed a bit more work to make it truly Beautifully Done...

Client had old carpet with a dark area rug, in a room with dark walls, and on the dark walls was dark wall art, and on that area rug was very oversized and dark furniture. I know that sentence just kept on going... it kinda felt like I was in a Doctor Suess book, so, I just couldn't stop. lol

Anyway, after the wall was painted, the carpet removed, new floors down, we went shopping for the furniture and I painted the wall art to save money on a tight budget.

Can you see the power of the right amount of wall art, the correct sized furniture, and the symmetry of the colors the rug compliments and completes?

Let's talk about symmetry of size and color a bit more... in this master bedroom you will see a truly amazing difference in the room!

Walked into the master bedroom and immediately saw it was a hot mess. The furniture wasn't placed properly to give room, and it was oversized. The rug was simply a mess in itself.

Let's begin with the room before remodel and new furniture...

Again, before

Now let's look at how much more we actually have in the room that before seemed so cramped but now looks spacious and inviting!



We painted walls, tore out old carpet, and put in wood floors. Then went shopping... strategically placed an area rug down, and lighter less bulky furniture to compliment the room. Notice how nicely the rug and wall art compliment the room? The client was so excited, as she complained of not having enough drawer space before with her oversized furniture, and after the makeover, she had plenty!

If in doubt call a designer in! We are trained to think outside the box, and designing is kinda our thing...right?

~ Trish Whitsell

Did this blog post make you look around your own living areas for symmetry of size and color? Did you jump on the net to start shopping around?

Side note to my fellow designers and decorators...

Keep in mind if a client changes a design or implements only a part of it, they truly won't have the complete look. We will always work around their choices, but sometimes their choices might just take away from the overall effect. I seldom argue with a client over them choosing different furniture, or decor, but I always feel if they would let a designer design, their space truly will be amazing! And usually, I encourage them when they show me what their preference is (Yes, even when I feel my design is actually better, unless it is just incredibly wrong ) as they will continue to live in that space long after I leave. I also feel everyone deep down has a little designer just begging to get out! Every now and then, I will stand my ground and vigorously disagree, it is their choose but they will remember my reluctance to implement the change in a design plan. Remember, it is better to fire a client, receive even their wrath of a bad review, and walk away knowing you did the right thing. for your design reputation. To have people see a terrible design flaw under your name and reputation literally could put you out of business faster than you standing your ground over them making bad design choices. I always think about it like this... there definitely are things I am not good at, many things actually. I rely on someone who is trained and good in those areas. I would never tell a plumber how to do his job as the clog or problem might never go away, nor would I a brain surgeon as the patient might die... see where I am going with these analogies? People hire a designer to make there space a better place. Don't leave it any other way especially when your name is attached to it.

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