Bringing a sense of place to your home.


Interior decorating can be a stressful process for many people. With social platforms like Instagram and Pinterest offering up endless decorating and styling ideas, it’s no wonder so many people feel completely overwhelmed.

I recently decorated and styled a house that I designed and the client asked me, “how do I know what decorative items will work in my home with out spending a fortune?”

So I thought I would share my top decorating tips from the recent shoot and show you how you can style your home with some of these trends for under $300!!

Understand your style

Before I start work with a client, I get pretty involved in understanding their interior style. For many people I work with knowing what their style is, is the one thing they struggle with the most. An easy way to start to do this yourself is to create some Pinterest boards with different imagery.

Top Tip: Try not to think about it too hard, just start pinning for 5 minutes or so. Once you’ve finished have a look at the types of imagery you have pinned, is there a common theme? For example – do the images you’ve chosen feature a lot of texture or are they quite minimal?

Once you can see a common thread this will help you get more specific on the interior style your drawn to and the items that would work with the style.

As part of this project the clients identified with contemporary and industrial design and to compliment this I worked with decorative items that were more monochrome.

Contemporary and industrial interior style kitchen with monochrome decor
Photography by Thorson Photography
Interior Decorating and Styling by Michelle Canny
Black Fruit Bowl – Kmart
Wooden Tray – Kmart

Think about your colour palette

For many of us there are certain colours that we are drawn to, but before you go out and buy blue cushions, a blue throw, blue vase (you get my drift), take a step back and think about the colours that feature in your home.

What colour are your walls, floors, furniture – all these things play a part in an overall colour scheme as they can either be warm colours and tones such as reds and yellows or cool colours such as greens and blues.

Top Tip: A colour scheme should have no more than 5 colours including neutrals. A great way to to identify what colours would work in your home without it looking like a rainbow is to use artwork as inspiration.

For the colour palette design of this home, I used the artwork as one of the main sources of inspiration.

The flooring is a warm tone and the walls are a neutral grey, so to compliment the overall colour scheme of the house I chose decorative items using the colours featured in the artwork such as the cushions, throw and dining chairs.

Living room design with colour palette of blues, greens, light grey and white
Photography by Thorson Photography
Interior Decorating and Styling by Michelle Canny
Cushions – Adairs, Target and H&M Home
Throw – Boho Luxe Trader

Decorating doesn’t have to be expensive

A common misconception many people have is that decorating is expensive and because of this they can’t create the look they want.

My response to this is always it doesn’t have to be. Decorating isn’t about buying lots of pieces, it’s about buying the right ones.

Top Tip: Renovating TV shows have become huge over the last 10 years and because of this large chain stores such as Target and Kmart have responded by introducing their own home wares that mimic those that you would see on TV shows (sometimes  the items you see on TV will actually be from these stores!…shock horror 🙀)

When deciding on items to buy, think about what you like and see if it’s available at the less expensive stores. Mix it up, only invest in items you truly love and know you will keep and spend less on items you are likely to change with the seasons such as cushions.

Modern master bedroom with feature artwork above bed
Photography by Thorson Photography
Interior Decorating and Styling by Michelle Canny
Cushions – Freedom and HK Living
Artwork – United Interiors

Style to dress a space

Interior styling is all about dressing a space not cluttering it with every single vase, pot or decorative item you have.

Before you get styling think about what you would like to have on display (and remember it doesn’t have to be everything you own!) and how you use it. If you have young children it may not pay to have small nick knacks at a level they can reach them but why not try styling them on a shelf.

Top Tip: Only display items you really love and think about whether they fit your overall style. Arrange them in a way that is visually interesting such as grouping them together, experiment with different heights and allow their to be space between items so that the surface doesn’t look overly cluttered. 

Repeat this mantra after me: less is more!!! 😉

Interior styling of plants, picture frames and books for in a living space
Photography by Thorson Photography
Interior Decorating and Styling by Michelle Canny
Planter Pots – Kmart, Indoor Plants – Bunnings, Frames – HK Living

If you would like to know more about how you can create a look like this or your very own dream space, click here to book in for a FREE 30 minute obligation free chat.

Image and brand credits – All images by Amanda Thorson Photography, Design and Styling by Michelle Canny, Kmart, Target, HK Living, Adairs, Boho Luxe Trader, United Interiors, H&M Home and Bunnings

Leave a comment


Free Quiz:

Discover Your Inner Style

Need help choosing an interior style for your home but not exactly sure what your style is?

Have a go at this quick and easy quiz to help you find a look that suits your taste and ways you can achieve the look you love.


Free E-BOOK:


Inside You'll Find:

What is the right height to hang artwork?

What is the right size rug for my living room?

How do you decorate a small space?

How to find out what your interior style is.

How to choose a colour scheme for your home.