Matching design services to your goals and needs can get you on the road to a living room that better reflects you

Great Home Project: Refresh Your Living Room.

Does your living room have a case of the blahs? Whether you’re looking for quick furniture-arranging help or a complete overhaul, read on for the need-to-know info on making your living room live up to its full potential. We caught up with interior designer Mollie Openshaw to get the scoop on costs, time frames and picking the right pro for the job.

Learn where to look for palette inspiration — and one commonly advised place maybe you shouldn’t

Decorating 101: How to Choose Your Colors.

Once you have figured out what style of interior you want and how much you want to spend, your next decision is: What colors should you use?

At the beginning of our Decorating 101 series, I recommended collecting photos of rooms that you like. And don’t just limit yourself to room shots. “I tear a lot of photos out of Vogue that are very inspirational to me for color palettes,” says San Francisco designer Allison Caccoma.

Take out those images or call up your Houzz ideabook now and have a good look. Are there certain color palettes that appear over and over? Is there one color that you find yourself liking the most? That should help you choose an overall palette for your decorating project.

Before you grab that first paint chip, figure out your needs, your decorating style and what to get rid of

Decorating 101: How to Start a Decorating Project.

Congratulations. You’ve decided to decorate your home. Now what?

Whether you’re furnishing your first place or redoing the house you’ve owned for decades, decorating can be a challenging task, filled with costly decisions whose outcomes could haunt you for years. How do you figure out what style is right for you? Should you tackle the job yourself or hire a pro? How much should you spend? And what steps can you take to ensure you’ll be happy with the results?

In this series I’ll take you through the entire decorating process, from initial inspirations to final floor plans. We’ll talk about choosing colors, shopping for furniture, arranging furniture, where you should scrimp and where you should spend.