January 10, 2011

Photoshop Decor Mock-up

Thought I'd share a quick "decorating" tip that I use frequently. Sometimes I have an idea of some kind of house project that I'd like to do, but am unsure about the results (ie. would that room look good with an accent wall? would a bench or console table look better in the entry way? would hanging curtains in the basement look weird if the couch can't be centered under them?) The hard way of answering these questions is to paint the accent wall, buy the console table, or hang the curtains only to realize that actually you don't like the end result. Trying out different options until they fit (even if the items can be returned!) wastes time and money.

I've started using a better solution- mock up a virtual photo of your idea in Photoshop. Here's how:
  • Take a picture of the room you're working with, and upload it into Photoshop. Try to take photos from a couple of different angles.
  • If you're curious as to how a new piece of furniture, a lamp, or certain accessories would work in that space, find a similar picture of what you're looking for online. Copy and paste that picture into a new Photoshop document, and use the magnetic lasso tool to select only the item you're considering in that image. Then cut that image, paste it into your room photo, and drag it to size. Place it where you want in the room.
  • For an accent wall (or different wall color), just select each wall and fill it in with that color. This obviously won't give you an exact idea, but it can help.
  • If you're trying to decide between a couple of different things in the same space (ie. which style lamp would look best on an end table) put them all into your room photo on different layers, but in the same place. You can then turn on and off layer visibility for a "quick change" of lamp style to see which you like best.
Sorry for all of the Photoshop lingo. I'm sure this works with other editing software. This is the mock up that I made for our bedroom in July. At this point, we had different lamps and no frames above the bed. I tried a couple of different combinations, and liked this best.

As I posted earlier, I've come pretty close to the mock up. I'd love find a bench, but no need to rush:) Here it is again:

This corner is empty in our room currently, but here's what I'm going for eventually:

I know that's a really crappy job of mocking up the photo, but it gives a good general idea. Hope this helps!

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