Creating a Balanced Room

Designer, Lauren Oviatt, shares five points to consider when trying to achieve that perfect balance in your space.

1. Color:

One of the simplest ways to balance a room is to carry the same color throughout. Many people don’t know this, but certain colors will read the same to the eye as it scans a room. Don’t be so hung up on having the exact shade of blue on the pillows, drapes, rug and decorative accessories. The more slight variations you have off your ‘main’ color will make things more interesting and less contrived. Another tip: combine the use of lights and darks – using equal amounts of cool and warm colors is effortless balance: achieved.

2. Space Planning:

Space planning is huge and something a designer’s expertise can facilitate! To create balance you MUST think not only about the appropriate use of space throughout the room, but also the scale and size of the pieces you’ll be using. You’d never be happy having huge upholstered pieces in a small room (no room for side tables, lamps and accessories) and likewise a room with fifteen foot ceilings would feel empty with furniture and pieces that are too small.
Tip: When considering a floor plan, start by placing your furniture in the middle of the room and work toward the walls. You’ll get a more exciting result.

3. Repetition:

In any space use the element of repetition to create balance. This can be in the display and use of certain shapes, motifs, colors or finishes. In a room where the palette is neutral or light overall, use dark hardware on furniture pieces, a dark lampshade, and dark frames for your artwork to draw the eye around the room and ‘connect the dots’ so to speak. The repetition of these things is harmonious and reflects a certain attention to detail without trying too hard.

4. Light Control:

Think about the placement of lamps and alternate lighting that you’ll use in the evening. Create balance by placing lamps on a sofa table in one part of the room and a floor lamp that sits by a reading chair on the other side. That desirable ‘ambient glow’ is often maximized by the use of dimmer or three-way switched fixtures that can be matched at the same level. If you have a room with glaring windows all along side, think about placing a mirror on the opposite wall to move the light around the room.

5. Room to Room:

Many of today’s homes have Great rooms that adjoin different seating areas. Carefully consider how you’ll design and decorate these rooms to reflect the balance you’d work so hard for in a singular room. Carry color or certain textures throughout; although these spaces have different functions, you should consider them as different parts that must make up a harmonious whole.

Lauren Stimpson Oviatt

Oviatt-Pratt & Associates

Interiors & Design


Lauren has always had a love for interior and landscape design, floral décor, and all things beautiful! Having lived in the South and also on the west coast before settling in Utah, her design instinct is to combine traditional elements and furniture with updated style and current color palettes. She is constantly looking for ways to infuse glamour into her projects while bringing a fresh perspective and an eye for tasteful, classic design.

Oviatt – Pratt is a full-service design firm in business for over 25 years, specializing in high-end residential and commercial design. The scope of their projects ranges from simple home renovations to large scale construction projects where design is implemented from the first wall color choice to the final finishing touches. With direct access to over 50 upholstery, accessory and furniture lines, Oviatt-Pratt’s designers are able to provide each client with pieces that are particular to his or her taste and style. Their showroom is open to the public Monday through Friday.

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