On the one hand, I hate rules and I don't really believe that most things are black and white. However I'm about to lay down some rules for decorating your home that you can take with a grain of salt.
Your house should be unique, and it should tell the story of who lives there. A space feels special when it's layered and there are details that catch your eye when you look at it from different angles. But that doesn't mean you need to load up your cart at IKEA or Amazon and clutter your space with random stuff that doesn't add to the feeling you're trying to create.
It's often not the amount of stuff, but the pieces you choose. Here are a few of my favourite strategies to infuse a space with style and personality without overwhelming yourself with clutter.
Rules of thumb for creating your space
Vintage or antique in every room
There's something about older pieces that add personality to a space in a way that new things just can't compete with. If you're picturing Grandma's sitting room that's not the vibe. A modern space with a few vintage accents just feels right and softens any hard edges. One piece of lowkey furniture of a cool antique sitting on a stack of books can make all the difference.
Only choose pieces that make you feel something
If you're holding a thing at a big box store and you think "Hmm yeah that's pretty cute" put it down. Wait until you find something, whether new or old, that makes your heart beat a little faster and you think "I love this! Why do I love this so much??" Fill your home with items that spark joy and you'll infuse your space with happy feelings.
Normal is boring. Even if you like a more traditional style make sure to shake it up and have a few pieces that are just weird for the sake of being weird. A family heirloom or a thing from an antique store that you're not entirely sure what it is but you just think it's cool? Those are the things that make a space uniquely you and make your guests look twice (in a good way).
Stop comparing or blindly following trends
We all know that social media can have the effect on us of making us feel lesser in comparison. Pretty pictures or videos of curated spaces can make us feel bad when we're looking around our own real, less-than-perfect, lived-in spaces. Constantly remind yourself that content online is an illusion and it's not a fair comparison to daily life. Don't let that push you into buying things just because you keep seeing it and you hope it will make you like your space better. One item won't transform an entire home, and if you keep hopping on trend bandwagons it will feel like a mismash.
Take the time, get to know your own taste and collect things that feel right. Homes take time and change slowly over time. I'm also a big fan of breaking rules so first and foremost do whatever feels right to you and looks right to your eye.