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5 tips for choosing the perfect art for your home

Updated: Oct 8, 2021

I’ve always loved adorning my walls with works of art I have created. As a 19-year-old, purchasing our first home, money was super tight! The only way I could get some colour onto our walls was to paint them myself. I always loved interior design and decorating and really enjoyed painting large pieces of art to compliment the colours I wanted in each room - adding pops of colour and a focal point for each space. It was amazing what could be achieved with some Bunnings sample paint pots and a cheap canvas from the $2 shop!

So, I have put together a few tips to help you decide on choosing art for your own home.

Artist Sheree Smith hanging colourful artwork on wall

1. Decide on a Size

There is nothing worse than an artwork that is too small for the wall it adorns. I see it all the time and it makes me cringe! The bigger the wall, the bigger the art should be, to look balanced and make an impact.

If you are hanging the piece over furniture such as a bed, a sideboard or a couch, you can use the width of that as a guide. You don’t want to have one piece of 60 x 60cm art above a 2-meter-long couch!

A general rule of thumb would be to at least go two-thirds of the size of the furniture, or if you have smaller works you really love, put two or three of the same size works from a collection side by side to fill the space. A gallery wall of smaller various sizes from a range of artists you love can also look amazing if done correctly! Keep in mind that a lot of smaller pieces can make a room feel cluttered, whereas one big piece will make a smaller room feel larger.

I love big statement pieces of art and if you’re not sure, bigger is generally better. I haven’t come across too many occasions where I see art that is too big…. But plenty of times where the art is too small.

large geometric artwork in dining room

2. Select artwork by the style or theme of the space

Consider the atmosphere you would like to create for your space.

Do you love a coastal vibe? Does boho float your boat? What about Scandi? Retro? Do you want the room to feel formal, dramatic and opulent? Or casual, calm and cozy?

As an example, if you’re aiming for a Hampton's feel, a geometric piece or pop art isn’t going to gel.

Deciding on the style and feel of the space will help you in selecting the perfect piece of art to help tie the room together and add cohesion.

3. Choose a Colour Palette

Art can help you decide the colour palette for the room. It is often useful to choose your art first and build the room around it. You can add soft furnishings such as cushions and throws and rugs to draw out colours in the artwork and add texture and interest to the room. Decide if you love neutral colours, earthy tones, pastels, or bright fun pops of colour.

If you already have a colour palette existing in the space, select art that contains a colour already present in the room. Play around with varying shades of the colour to keep within the existing colour palette or highlights a colour within the room that you’d like to accentuate further.

hand holding a collection of paint colour chips fanned out

4. Choose your art by subject or style

If you’re not set on a particular style, colour or theme for a room, you can decide on art you like by the subject matter. Think about the art you are drawn to and catches your eye.

Is it abstract or realism? Do you love bold and bright or soft and subtle? Are you drawn to botanical floral works or structured geometric patterns? Do you love to look at landscapes, oceans, people or animals? Do you enjoy busy, detailed pieces or simple, minimal pieces?

Thinking about the subject matter or style of art you are drawn to will help you narrow down your choices.

5. Choose art because you love it

The final and most important point is to choose a piece of art because it sings to you!

You will look at this piece every day, so make sure you like it. You want to walk by it and smile. If it uplifts you and make you feel good, then get it! If it calms and soothes you, then it’s perfect. Have fun, be playful and show off your personality!

Choose a piece because it makes your heart happy. At the end of the day, if you love the piece, then you will find a spot in your home where you can make it work and enjoy it for many years to come.

Happy decorating!

large painting in modern home dining room with raked ceiling

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