Gray and white interior design of a dining and kitchen area

15 Interior Design Secrets from the Professionals

Looking for a complete family room interior redesign or some interior design secrets for selling houses? At Dream By MJS Interiors we have completed projects for the Four Seasons Residential Tower in Austin, as well as other sophisticated projects, such as a complete interior redesign of a two-story penthouse in Houston and a project for a Texas state senator at Camp Logan in Houston

Throughout our experience, our team of professional interior designers has picked up some secrets that can be applied to any interior design project, whether it’s decorating modern living rooms or 19th-century Mediterranean decor. But we believe that knowledge is most effective when shared.

Here are fifteen interior secrets that the professionals use that can be applied to your next interior design project!

Design for Comfort

When starting an interior redesign, comfort and purpose should be your primary objective. More specifically, comfort should be your primary purpose. You want your home, living room, and bedroom to be an area of zen and relaxation, utilizing soft, earthy tones and plush furniture that is inviting and roomy.

This is why most designers recommend choosing your color palette as the first step in an interior design project. This is because softer colors will promote greater relaxation in more intimate rooms and darker colors will promote greater urgency in home offices and kitchens. By establishing a comforting atmosphere through the color wheel, you can begin assembling furnishings and home decor that will build up a room’s sense of comfort and purpose.

Focus on Focal Points

Think of the focal point of the room as the foundation of a house. The focal point is the first thing that visitors will spot when entering a room. It could be a fireplace, a window, or a table that establishes the flow of the room. The focal point will dictate the positioning of the furniture and the arrangement of walkways and seating. Use furniture arrangements to bring more focus to the focal point of a room and establish a balance thereafter.

Don’t Leave Walls Bare

This tip isn’t as much of a secret as it is a necessity. Bare walls can make a room feel suffocating and simply unsophisticated. Wall mount lights, artwork, and mirrors can add significant depth to a room that may appear smaller than it actually is. Plus, wall fixtures add to the flow of a room, making rooms feel more inviting. Imagine walking into a bathroom without a mirror? Creepy!


Everyone Forgets About Ceilings

Ceilings are the most neglected area of any room, but they can significantly add value to your house and depth to your design. Glass ceilings can enrich rooms with natural light, mural ceilings can compliment decor arrangements, and gold-tinted ceilings can add an unparalleled level of luxury to any home. Many argue that walls or furnishings tie rooms together, but why not ceilings?

Use Bold Colors Strategically

As previously stated, softer shades can breathe serenity into any room and make it more inviting. But a red throw pillow or an imperial blue lamp can add a nice visual contrast. Don’t utilize bold colors too frequently, but use them as secondary focal points to tie the room together through color contrasts.

Living - Family | Interior Designers

Utilize Color Accents and Contrasts

Color truly is everything when it comes to finishing a design:

  • Complimentary colors can create illusions that make rooms appear bigger and bolder
  • Accent colors can tie the room together by contrasting focal points on opposing walls or surrounding trim
  • Monochromatic colors create a pleasant and inviting atmosphere.

Natural Lighting is Everything

What separates a studio apartment in a highrise from your stylish home living room is not the amount of furniture or the ceilings you have, but the availability of natural lights coming from your windows that make rooms appear bigger and more inviting. Sheer curtains allow for natural sunlight and are the perfect addition to a finished room.

Wallpaper Can Add Pop

Do you have a bare or ugly wall or ceiling patch you want to cover up? Well, some floral or monochromatic wallpaper can add pop to any room, as long as it fits within the general color scheme. Cheap, effective, and unnoticeable, wallpaper adds a fresh aesthetic to any room and can tie a room together if done well.

Rugs Are Inviting

Wood and laminate flooring often evoke mixed emotions, none of which are too inviting. A rug could quickly fix that by arranging them properly in walkways and living rooms to focalize furniture and other decor.  

Furniture and Spacing

You may notice that interior designers never push furniture against a wall. All furniture is usually positioned at least a foot away from walls to actually make rooms appear larger and more inviting. It may sound strange, but arranging furniture with enough space from each other and any barriers can make rooms appear less suffocating and more inviting.

We Love Wall Lights

It’s true, wall lights can solve many of your existing interior design issues. Aside from covering up bare walls and accenting mirrors, they can add more light to rooms, giving it that added layer of zen. There’s nothing more uninviting than a dimly lit room.

Add Color to Trims

Window and wall trims are perhaps the most overlooked design aesthetic of any room...and ceilings! But there’s a great opportunity to add a splash of color to your lifeless wall trims to create some unique color contrasts and compliments that, again, tie a room together.  

Consider the 50/150 Rule

This tip really applies to a fresh interior redesign or stripped walls. Essentially, you want to create a color contrast that is 50% lighter than the base with another color that is 150% darker than the base.

More Pillows!

Nothing is truly more inviting to a room than more throw pillows. They can add bold color contrasts and simply make a room feel more comfortable, literally!

Fixtures and Accessories Tie Everything Together

Finally, what truly ties a room together is furnishing and decor. From wall mounts to lamps and couches, choosing the right furniture will establish Feng-shui and influence how people interact and relax in your room.



For more design tips and tricks visit our interior design blog or contact us today!

Outdoor patio interior design surrounded by plants

Ways To Give Your Outdoor Area A Fresh New Feel

A home’s exterior is the first thing that people see, and it often shapes people’s opinions on the property. Having an appealing exterior can leave a lasting first impression that can greatly improve one’s opinion of the home. The great thing about renovating your home’s exterior is that there are many ways to go about it. There are many ways to spruce up your outdoor area a fresh feel, and it is all up to personal preference. For example, a Texas native may search for some modern outdoor furniture in Houston to add detail to their outdoor living space, while someone in a more rural area may opt to plant a garden instead. However, not all remodeling projects are created equally, as many have their strengths and weaknesses. Here are some of the best ways to give your outdoor area a fresh new feel.

Plants and Flowers

One of the easiest and cheapest ways to redecorate your home’s exterior is to plant a garden of some kind. An assortment of plants and flowers can be a great way to spruce up your home’s exterior and breathe new life into it. Flowers and plants can be bought from just about any major retail store, and are relatively cheap compared to other remodeling options. One of the best things about planting a garden is there are many different ways to go about it, and you can create your garden to match your home’s style or your own personality. In addition, planting a garden typically won’t require any outside help, allowing you to do the entire project by yourself. This can be a great way to save money as paying contractors will not be required, allowing you to spend money improving other areas of your home. However, planting a garden by yourself does require a lot of time, effort, and care in order to successfully complete and maintain. That being said, if you’re up to the task then adding a natural element to your home’s exterior can be an extremely cost-effective way to give your outdoor area a fresh feel.

Add A Deck or Patio

Although one of the more expensive options on the list, adding a deck or patio can be an amazing way to give your outdoor area a fresh new feel. Construction will likely cost thousands of dollars, but it will be well worth it if you can fit the renovation into your budget. Decks and patios are not only aesthetically pleasing to the eye but are also extremely versatile in their uses. A patio can be used as a second dining room, allowing your family to eat outside when the weather Decks can be a great place for grilling and enjoying summer days. You can be the envy of your neighborhood as you host barbeques and cookouts from your brand new deck. In addition, there are also many different types of decks and patios that you can choose from. For example, you may want an enclosed patio with some David Hicks carpet designs. Enclosed patios give you great freedom when designing, as you can choose from a wide variety of things such as carpeted flooring or tile flooring. An enclosed patio can function like another normal room in your house and is still aesthetically pleasing from the outside. You could also want an open patio, allowing you to soak up the sun as you enjoy time with family. Decks are usually straightforward, but they come in many shapes and sizes for you to pick from. Adding a deck or patio can be an amazing way to change how your home’s exterior looks and can make your home that much more enjoyable to live in.

Buy New Furniture

If you already have a deck or patio and are looking to spruce it up a bit, then try buying all new furniture for them. Old furniture can really dampen the mood and make a place seem dilapidated and outdated. On the other hand, brand new furniture can breathe new life into a place and can also be a great talking point. Try integrating some new furniture into your outdoor areas such as some Dedon patio furniture. This can give your home’s exterior that brand new chic look that you’ve always wanted. If you’re buying new furniture, make sure you are buying pieces that match and go well together. You don’t want to mismatch your new furniture and have your home’s exterior be a hodgepodge of different colors and conflicting designs.  In addition, completely renovating your outdoor area with new furniture may be quite costly. That’s why you may want to replace your old furniture in a gradual process or try saving up a little before making purchases. If you have the budget to splurge on some new furniture, then your home’s outdoor area may just be the new talk of the town.


One of the best ways to give your outdoor area a fresh feel is to clean and repaint your home’s exterior. Start by pressure washing your homes’ exterior to remove all dirt and dust. Then prime stains and begin repainting. Cleaning and repainting your home’s exterior can make it appear brand new and can greatly improve its looks. If you’re not satisfied with simply repainting your home’s exterior, you can also repaint your home’s doors and windows for a little extra flare.  There are many options to consider when repainting your home’s exterior. For example, are you going to keep the same color, or will you go with something different? Is this a project you are comfortable tackling by yourself, or will you need outside help? Repainting your home likely won’t break the bank like some other options on this list, but it also isn’t the cheapest and will still require a lot of time and careful planning. However, if done correctly your home could appear clean, fresh, and looking brand new. If you’re looking to give your outdoor area a fresh new feel, then you definitely have to consider repainting your home’s exterior.

White and silver living room interior design idea

Designing The Living Room Of Your Dreams

We all have that one dream living room design that we’ve always wanted. This dream living room is vibrant, filled with life, and full of our favorite colors and things. This room would be classic yet modern and would serve a wide variety of purposes in your life. It can be a creation that your proud of, a dream that you brought into reality. Unfortunately, most people believe this dream to be unattainable. People don’t want to put time, money, and effort into creating a great living room. What most people don’t know is that with a little effort and some planning, the living room of your dreams is entirely obtainable. While designing a living room may take some time, it is by no means out of your reach. All you need is a headstart and some pointers, and soon you will be a designer pro. Here are some tips to help you design the living room of your dreams.

Pick A Theme

Before you can do anything with your living room, you need to have a theme or some sort of design in your mind. While this may seem like an easy task, it can actually be quite challenging. You’ve had your dream living room in mind for years now, so surely it shouldn’t be too hard to translate it into a workable design, right? Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case. Some aspects of your dream living room may not fit into your budget or your room size, and may just be flat out not practical for a living room. You don’t have to compromise too much when it comes to picking a theme, but try making the design as practical and easy as possible without sacrificing your dream living rooms’ identity. This can save you a lot of time, money, and effort in the near future.

Find Outside Help

Designing and furnishing an entire living room is a very tall task, so it may be wise to seek some outside assistance. That is why you should consider seeking out a contract for interior design services. These people can help you make your dream living room a reality and can handle many of the tough design elements. It's a great help to not have to tackle design issues all by yourself, and these designers can provide ideas and input that can make your dream living room even better than you could have ever imagined. These designers also have connections that can greatly help the quality of the room, and they may even be able to find you great deals in places you never even thought to look. Overall, the purpose of having an interior designer help you out is to make sure the whole design process goes faster and much smoother. For example, an interior designer may be able to speed up the design process by utilizing fast track constructing. A fast track contract can ensure that your design comes to life well ahead of schedule and can save you time and money. If you’re struggling to make your dream room a reality, then hiring an interior designer may just be the final puzzle piece missing.

Get Started On Flooring and Walls

While flooring and wallpaper may not be the first thing you notice when you walk into the room, it is an extremely important aspect and should not be overlooked. Think of your flooring and wallpaper as the glue that holds and ties your room together. Quality flooring and wallpaper can go a long way and making a room appear high quality and modern. To start, you need to pick flooring. There are a wide variety of options, so choose carefully. You could go for something standard such as a carpeted floor, or try something a little more modern such as tile. Carpeted floors allow you to choose from a wide variety of fabrics and colors. You could even add some real flare by looking into some David Hicks interior designs. Tile can appear more modern and comes in many different sizes, shapes, and colors. Once you decide your flooring option, you need to move onto your living room’s walls. It is highly recommended that your room’s floor and walls match in some capacity and play off of each other. For your walls, you can either find some chic wallpaper print, or you can simply paint your walls to match your floors. Regardless of how you choose to decorate your room, never lose sight of your overall design and theme. Make sure that that all of your room’s elements work well together, and you will have a stunning display.

Decide on Furniture

Once all other design elements are decided on, it is time to start deciding on what type of furniture will go into your dream living room. The furniture is the true star of the room, as it is what will take up much of your vision. Ideally, you want furniture that blends in well with your flooring and wallpaper, but also fits in well with your other furniture pieces. If your furniture does not match, then your room will never come together and will simply look like a hodgepodge mess. In addition, you probably want to go with new and exciting furniture to tie your room together. You may be able to find some good deals on quality old furniture, or may even find some quality refurbished pieces, however usually old furniture pieces are dilapidated and don’t appear modern at all. By choosing modern furniture you can give your dream living room a fancy chic look that will be the envy of all of your guests. Also, make sure all of your furniture fits the dimensions of your room, as you don’t want a singular massive piece that sticks out like a sore thumb.  Once your new furniture is all in place, all of the design elements are all set in stone and your dream room has finally come together. Congratulations, and enjoy your dream living room!