The Design Struggle Is Real: Want to Update But Don’t Know Where to Start?

For most homeowners, a total design revamp of their space is the ultimate dream. But the reality is that redesigning a space is a major undertaking.

Couple this with the fact that if you’re not moving into a new home, your space might already be “designed” (albeit maybe not well) with furniture and decor collected over time.

Instead of trying to overhaul an entire room at once – which is expensive and requires a lot of time and effort – consider making a series of key updates to your already decorated space. This approach begs the question: Where do I start?

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Tackling all the updates you want to make at once can feel overwhelming. To help, we gathered some expert tips from our Modsy designers on what they think is the best approach to making practical and stylish (and manageable) updates to your spaces, one step at a time.

Read on to find out how to streamline your updating process, and avoid home design headaches.

 

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Step 1: Assess What’s Not Working

When updating any space in your home, always start by asking yourself the crucial question: What’s not working?

Knowing this will help you zero in on what you should update in your space, and – if it’s multiple things – help you prioritize which to tackle first. , be it adding more tables and seating or simply rearranging your layout a bit.

If it’s your layout…

Try to pinpoint what you ultimately want out of your space. Do you need a more multifunctional set-up because you have small children running around? Or is it that you want to create a seating area that’s more conducive to conversation and hosting friends?

Take your time when considering how you’ll be using your space, as this decision can help you think about what kinds and sizes of furniture to purchase later on.

If it’s your furniture…

Think about how your existing pieces are not working for you. Perhaps it’s a sofa that’s not comfy enough, a TV stand that’s just a little too tall, or simply not enough places to set down a drink.

Get specific about what it is about your furniture that’s no longer suiting your space.

If it’s your room’s style…

That’s aesthetically not working for you, try honing in on specifics and start there. Is your room lacking in color? Are you looking for prettier, more grown-up furnishings? Or are you simply trying to figure out what your style is?

If it’s the latter, our Modsy Style Quiz can help provide some guidance. Regardless, keep your focus simple and straightforward in terms what you feel is stylistically missing.

 

Step 2: Set a Long-Term Goal

Once you’ve identified the focus for your updates, set a long term goal for your space and backtrack to where you are right now.

If your goal is to set up your room with better flow…

Think about how you’d ideally like people to interact and move around in your space. This will help you plan the best layout for your room.

If your aim is to upgrade your existing furnishings

Have a clear end goal in mind. Whether it’s swapping in bigger, comfier seating or adding a nicer coffee table, knowing what your ideal space looks like will help you create a checklist and work through the updates in the order and timeframe that makes sense.

If you’re hoping to up your style game in your room

Consider the mood and overall ambience you want to create, which will give you a sense of the types of details and furnishings you need to look for to update your space.

Knowing where you want to end up is a great way to guide the choices you make now to update your space.

 

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Step 3: Start With One Main Focus

Don’t panic if your answer to the previous questions ended up being ‘everything needs updating’ or ‘more than one thing needs help.’ It’s natural for all the small things to pile up, but don’t let it distract you. Stay on track by laser-focusing on one problem that is most pertinent or has been persisting the longest.

If you’re focused on creating a better layout…

Try to discern if there’s a piece that’s currently throwing off the arrangement in your space and consider if it’s needed still or not.

It’s important to be honest with yourself here if a piece simply does not fit in with your space and is keeping you from achieving the ideal layout in your end goal – this could be a sofa that you’ve had forever but is just slightly too big, or chairs that have nowhere else to go in your home.

If you’re keen on updating your furniture…

But your sofa, armchairs, TV stand, and layout all need rethinking, start by figuring out how you can update the biggest item, which is often your sofa. Then use your sofa as guide to move on to the next big furniture problem.

In this instance, solve for your furniture first rather than trying to find the best sofa and create the best layout at the same time. This will help you slowly build towards your end goal for your space.

If you’re fine-tuning the style in a space…

Pick an aesthetic angle to help guide you. Color is often a great starting point here, so take a little time to land on a color palette that will provide the ambience you’re hoping to create in your space.

 

Step 4: Don’t Get Discouraged

At this point, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed and distracted as one thing feels like it needs to work with another. Keep tackling one issue at a time and using each solution to inform your next decision.

Making long-term updates is a process, so it’s natural that things might not feel perfect right away. Keep at it and don’t get discouraged!

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Step 5: Continue With the One-By-One Approach

Eventually, you’ll have made some decisions about your space and have updated all and any big items.

Then, turn your focus to smaller problem areas or pieces and go through the same vetting process. This is where you might focus on pillows for the sofa or art for one wall or what goes on the coffee table.

Or perhaps you’re now figuring out where a chair might go; find a place for the chair and try it out before moving on. Gradually, your original vision for your room will begin to take shape.

 

Step 6: See It All Together Before Buying

Finally, it can help to see all your ideas come to life in your space, before you make the purchase plunge. This is also a great time to make sure measurements, sizing and style all come together for a cohesive look.

It can be helpful to moodboard your ideas or purchase a Modsy design package to see life-like renderings of your designs in your 3D room.

Making updates is no simple feat, but with a starting point (and some patience) you can bring your updated vision to life over time.

 

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