April 03, 2021 6 min read

Written by Amelia @ The Luxe Home

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So you're thinking of changing the interior of your home or maybe you just want to create your dream room. Problem is you're not sure where to start, your ideas are all over the place. Not to worry just follow this guide on how to create a interior design mood board and those problems will be a thing of the past but before we start, it is important to understand...

What is an interior design mood board?

A mood board (or inspiration board) is a physical or digital collage of ideas, images and colours that reflect your taste in design as well your lifestyle needs ‍- it can be used to help visualise what you want for your home! Mood boards have been used for years by interior designers, they often used magazines for inspiration and images but now with Pinterest being so prevalent you don't need anything more than your phone or a piece of paper! The concept behind this type of visual aid was originally created by artists who would create aesthetic pictures, which consisted primarily of drawings from memory. But nowadays there has become much less emphasis placed upon drawing skills as we can pull inspiration and ideas from so many different sources.

OK, now we've cleared that up its time to get started.

Step 1: Digital or physical mood board?

The first step is to choose whether you want your interior design mood board to be physical or digital. By physical I mean you use a physical piece of paper or cardboard for your mood board. I suggest using A3 as it gives us enough space for our pictures fabric and colour swatches but not so much room that we end up stuffing a million ideas on the board.

If you want to go digital just make a mood board on your favourite website, I would recommend Pinterest or Canva (free version). Once you have decided whether your mood board is physical or digital it's time to move onto step 2.

Step 2: Think about your room

Living room with sofa and coffee table place in front of a window

This is quite an important step in the process because each room contains a variety of different elements and each room will often have its own distinct purpose, all of which will play a role in creating a mood board and creating your perfect room or home.

Although each room will have it's own specific elements, as long as you cover the elements on the list below you'll be 90% of the way there, the other 10% will be specific to your room or home.

Elements that you should include on your interior design moodboard...

You'll need to find images for:

  • Room inspiration - Find pictures of rooms (you can use Google, Instagram, Pinterest or magazines) that give off the overall vibe or feeling you'd like your space to have.
  • Paint colour - We all know how important paint colour is to the feeling of a room and since you have pictures of your room inspiration you should have a fairly good idea of what colour or colours you want to use in your space. However, don't be limited by your room inspiration as that exact colour may not work in your space. The position of your windows and lighting among other things can all effect how a colour looks and feels so don't be afraid to experiment a little. Also it's important to remember that digital images of paint colour can vary significantly from the colour in real life so if you've gone digital for your interior design mood board I suggest trying to get hold of a physical paint swatch before making a decision.
  • Flooring - Flooring plays such a large role in the feeling of a room, so it should be one of the first things on your interior design mood board.
  • Rugs - Since we're on the topic of flooring its also worth considering whether you'll want to use rugs. Rugs are great for a variety of reasons but there is no right or wrong answer as to whether you should use them in your space. However, it's always a question worth considering.
  • Furniture - Find images of the furniture you'd like for your space that suit the overall feel your after and don't forget to include images of the furniture that you already have! No need to buy all brand new furniture when you may already have the perfect piece!
  • Fabrics - Finding your furniture style can be easy but finding your perfect fabric isn't always a walk in the park. Having swatches of different fabrics you like on your mood board will help you to pull the room together and get a better understanding of how the materials will work with your other elements.
  • Lighting - Lighting really can shift the feeling of a room so make sure you're thinking about your lighting style. Are you going for a minimalist feel? Look for wall lights or spot lights. Looking to create a more industrial vibe? Stick to black metal style lighting.
  • Artwork - Art is similar to rugs in that you may or may not want to use artwork in your space. Art can really lift a room but in a small space too much artwork can 'clutter' the room and make it feel too busy. Once again there is no right or wrong answer as to whether you want to include artwork but it's important to consider whether artwork is right for your space.
  • Accessories - It's easy to get carried away with choosing big pieces of furniture like a sofa or coffee table but the accessories you choose for a room will really help to create the feeling you're after. So make sure to spend some time thinking about what accessories you might want or need for your new space. If you're not sure where to start take a look at your inspiration and what accessories they have used and go from there.

Step 3: Organising your interior design mood board

Black, orange and blue material swatches

When you've gathered all your swatches and images it's time to start organising your mood board.

If you're using a physical mood board don't glue or stick anything down, your first attempt isn't likely to be the end product and you're going to want to change bits and pieces as you go. Just laying them down in position is fine until you're ready to fully commit otherwise you'll have to create a whole new mood board every time you have a new idea or change your mind.

When laying the picture down or moving them around on your digital mood board its good to prioritise and think about what elements have the biggest impact on the feeling of your room. Things like wall colour and flooring are really important, so start by placing those down.

Then you might think your furniture and lighting are the next most important so place those. Quick tip, try to group together the furniture pictures that will sit near each other in your space, that way you can get a feel for if the pieces work together or not.

Finally, you might want to lay out all the images of your artwork, rugs and accessories. Again try to place them near the pieces of furniture they might be placed on or near as this will help you see whether they work or not.

Step 4: Step back

Now that you have all your images, it's time to step back and take a look at your mood board. Pay attention to your initial reaction but don't make any immediate changes. Your immediate reaction isn't always correct but it's important to make a note of what you like and don't like. Once you've had a good scan of your mood board take some time away from it and come back to it later with a fresh set of eyes and see what you think.

Step 5: Commit or Change

Once you've sat and thought about how the mood board looks and whether it achieves the feeling you're after you can either make changes to it or commit to it. Just remember an interior design mood board will never be perfect and it is not a detailed plan of your room so don't aim for perfection.

Your interior design mood board

That's it! You're finished with all the steps and elements you need for your mood board. Just remember to have fun and let your imagination run a little because after all you're creating your dream space



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