Decorating Ideas

Our Co-Founder Shares the Best Decorating Tricks She’s Discovered

Our Co-Founder Shares the Best Decorating Tricks She’s Discovered
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Since starting One Kings Lane seven years ago, our co-founder Susan Feldman has gleaned some game-changing design smarts from the wildly talented tastemakers we’ve worked with and the gorgeous homes we’ve featured. Here, she shares the decorating lessons that made all the difference in her own journey toward creating a home she loves.

Designer Sara Ruffin Costello’s living room nails a masterful mix of design styles.

Designer Sara Ruffin Costello’s living room nails a masterful mix of design styles.

1. Don’t Be Afraid to Mix Styles

Like most people I was obsessed with the idea of “finding my style,” so discovering that it didn’t have to be just ONE style was incredibly liberating. Don’t hesitate to pair a Louis XIV chair with a modern glass coffee table. These unexpected combos make for some of the most interesting interiors.

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The Connecticut living room of decorating doyenne Bunny Williams features multiple touches of gold.

The Connecticut living room of decorating doyenne Bunny Williams features multiple touches of gold.

2. Go for the Gold

When Bunny Williams speaks, I listen. During an interview she told us that “every room should have some gold in it. It reflects light, and to me it’s not formal—to me it’s happy,” and I’ve found this to be so true. Whether it’s a gilded mirror, a side table, or even just a small object topping a stack of books, a touch of gold is an easy way to brighten up any room.

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An oversize mirror dresses up the outdoor dining space of designer Windsor Smith’s L.A. abode.

An oversize mirror dresses up the outdoor dining space of designer Windsor Smith’s L.A. abode.

3. Layer Exteriors Like Interiors

I live in L.A., so there’s been no shortage of design attention paid to my outdoor space. Even so, discovering the professional secret from designers like Windsor Smith and Miles Redd of adding a last layer of elements you’d normally reserve for your interiors—decorative mirrors, hurricanes, a rug—has helped me take my backyard up a notch in style. Whatever you do, don’t just stop once you get the furniture in place. Look for beautiful “extras” that can weather the elements.

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Mustard-yellow sofas and an oversize mirror make dramatic statements in the living room of New York food guru Alison Cayne.

Mustard-yellow sofas and an oversize mirror make dramatic statements in the living room of New York food guru Alison Cayne.

4. Every Room Needs Some Drama

Over time I’ve found that the rooms I gravitate toward share one key characteristic: a sense of drama. Sometimes it’s through scale, with an oversize piece of art or a statement light fixture; other times it’s with a powerful punch of color—think a jewel-tone sofa or drapes; or maybe it’s with a showstopping rug. Regardless of how it’s done, I’ve learned one bold choice can be enough to take a room from beautiful to “oh, wow!”

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Our makeover of Gray Malin’s home used a series of matching pairs to create a new look.

Our makeover of Gray Malin’s home used a series of matching pairs to create a new look.

5. Symmetry Is ALWAYS a Great Solve

Matching pairs is one of my favorite, time-honored pro tricks, and one I’ve never regretted employing when decorating my own home. There’s something so calming and comforting about balanced bedsides or coordinating bookshelves flanking a mantel. When in doubt, go for two of everything!

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6. Trust Your Instincts

Designing a room will never be an exact science, so you do have to trust your gut sometimes. Through all my travels, conversations with designers, and countless hours spent searching for new products to feature on the site, I’ve learned that some things just speak to you. Now if I fall head over heels for a piece, I trust that I will be able to find a place for it in my home.

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Join the Discussion

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One Response to “Our Co-Founder Shares the Best Decorating Tricks She’s Discovered”

  1. boofinky says:

    stunning—–attractive

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