Still miss Domino? is the next-best thing.

I’m a regular reader of the bi-monthly online shelter magazine because it’s just like flipping through a real glossy mag. It’s also full of relatable down-to-earth design ideas and offers a smart take on how real people outfit their interiors

This month’s issue ponders “Interior Design Rules You Should Break.”  DIYers are intimidated by conventional wisdom regarding how to put together a room, said Lonny. When I went through the checklist, I discovered I was a already a decorating iconoclast –  unintentionally.

Rule: Match Your Wood Finishes
Many people are afraid to mix wood finishes in a single room, said Lonny.  I must be pretty brave because my family room is an assortment of  whitewashed wood hutch, dated 1990s golden oak coffeetable and dark walnut side table from a junk bonanza.  No worry. “Varying wood tones create a layered look,” said Lonny.

Rule: Every Window Needs a Window Treatment
Two walls of windows remain bare and exposed in our family room addition finished four years ago.  At night, the neighbors can easily watch me watching “Gray’s Anatomy,” and during the day the space feels unclothed and cold.  I’ll dress the windows some day. “There’s no shame in a naked window,” says Lonny.

Rule: Use Small Furniture in a Small Room
I have a tiny dining room and it’s overstuffed with a huge mahogany dining room table. At Thanksgiving, guests have to take turns pulling out chairs before sliding in. But beggars can’t be choosey when given a cast-off from a relative who moved to Florida. “Using a few large pieces in a small space often creates the illusion of a bigger room,” said Lonny. Often doesn’t mean always.

Are you a decorating rebel? Tell us what works for you.
If you’d like to see the complete list of rule breakers, go to

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