Small details can make the difference between a nicely furnished home and an extraordinarily beautiful living space. Serious home decorators, whether amateur or professional, give careful consideration to major details like wall covering, flooring, furniture, and art pieces. The truly outstanding home decorator also recognizes the aesthetic possibilities of basic functional items. One such item is the switch plate cover, which protects the electrical equipment behind a light switch. A plain white or off-white switch plate cover is unlikely to ruin the appeal of an otherwise well designed room. By making an unimaginative choice, however, the decorator might be squandering an opportunity to enhance the beauty of a room.
Some decorators may be unaware of the variety of materials, colors, and decorative features available in switch plate covers today. They are made from porcelain a variety of woods metals such as pewter, iron, bronze, copper, and brushed nickel and of course plastic. They come in almost any color or combination of colors you can imagine. Some are small art works in themselves, depicting characters and scenes as beautifully as what could be seen on a canvas of the same size. Some depict popular commercial entities such as a car brand or an amusement park brand. Some depict animal prints. Some are intended to complement various architectural and artistic styles. Whatever aesthetic vision a decorator wants to achieve, it is likely that an appropriate switch plate cover can be obtained.
Decorative elements which are or appear to be a permanent part of the building can impress people to a surprising degree. Consider a fresco which depicts notable ancestors of the owner painted directly on an interior wall. Such an artwork would probably make a greater impression on viewers than a framed portrait hung on the wall. Yet it would not necessarily be more difficult or expensive to produce. A child would be delighted to see a favorite interest, such as ponies, painted in a border along the top of her bedroom wall. Although switch plate covers can easily be replaced, and cost far less money than more ambitious installations, they too tend to be perceived as permanent fixtures. Even small personalizing touches make the owner feel more at home.
To be a great home decorator, one must have a strong aesthetic sensibility, great attention to detail, and the passion to take advantage of every opportunity to impress. The difference between a good design and a great one might be in subtle details that others would miss.