You Can Totally Change a Room by Switching out These 4 Small Design Elements


Not all interior design changes have to be full remodels. Sometimes, all it takes is a few small additions to totally change the way a room looks and feels. If you’re looking for some small design elements that make a huge impact, this post is for you. Read on to learn which elements make the biggest difference and how to use them in ways that will truly help your design stand out.

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small design elements

Use throw pillows to give the room a pop of color. Image: Ana Donohue Interiors

Throw pillows and blankets

If you’re looking to make a quick change to how a room looks, there’s no better way to do so than by switching out your textiles, like pillows and blankets. These items are not just functional. These small design elements help add visual interest in a variety of ways, including color, pattern and texture.

As far as color is concerned, you’ll want to keep the 10-30-60 rule in the forefront of your mind. Here, you’ll want to concentrate on the final 10 percent of the room. Pillows and blankets should always involve your accent color, or boldest, most eye-catching shade. Any prints or patterns you choose to use should also fit nicely within the color palette.

Then, there’s layering to consider. In this case, the goal is to infuse some texture into the space. Remember, in interior design, texture is experienced through the way an item looks like it feels. Do your best to incorporate a variety of distinct textures through your throw pillows and blankets.

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Switch out drawer pulls to give the room a new look. Image: Gold Interiors


Your hardware, or the pulls that you choose to use on your drawers and cabinets, may not seem like a big deal at first glance. However, these small design elements can make a significant style statement. Luckily, making the change is a fairly simple home improvement task. In most cases, it’s as simple as unscrewing one doorknob and screwing in another. Just be sure to count the number of pulls that you need so you avoid having to make multiple trips to the store.

Whether you choose to go with a modern copper finish or a more traditional brass finish, swapping out your finishes can go a long way towards changing up the look of your kitchen or bathroom for a fraction of the cost of a full remodel. Whichever finish you pick, make sure to repeat it in multiple applications throughout the space in order to tie the look together.

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Plants can add some freshness. Image: Scandinavian Homes

Plants or flowers

No matter what your personal design style, you should make a point to have plants or flowers become an element of the space. The reason behind this thinking is that plant life can add a pop of color and visual interest into the space while almost functioning as a neutral. Natural elements are commonplace enough that they will add to the design without drawing attention away from your other, stronger statement pieces.

That said, shopping for plant life is not a one-size-fits-all task. First, you have to consider the amount of natural light that there is in the room and aim to find a plant that will flourish in that environment. Next, you have to consider the amount of maintenance that you’re willing to undertake and purchase accordingly.

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Use decor elements to add visual interest. Image: Robert’s 21st Century Design

Decor pieces

Last but not least, when you’re looking for small design elements that have a big impact, it’s crucial to consider decor pieces. These are design elements with the sole purpose of adding visual interest into the space. Take, for example, the way the items on the built-ins in the picture above make the room much more visually complex.

The key to choosing successful decor pieces is making sure to include lots of variety. Do your best to choose items that vary in terms of shape, size and color. Then, when you get the pieces home, arrange them together in groupings so that their placement feels purposeful.

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