When working with clients I often hear these reasons for why they are enlisting my help:
“I am too busy”
“I don’t know how to pick things out and put them together”
“I hate shopping for my home”
Although I can’t create more hours in the day or convince anyone that shopping is the best form of therapy, I can help you learn to create a home that has great style and that reflects you. There are a couple of concepts I keep in mind whether shopping for my own home or a client’s.
1. Comfort and style should go hand-in-hand
Everyone wants a home that feels welcoming and warm. Whether it’s just for your daily use or so that guests always feel welcome, your home should be a comfy little nest. The best way to achieve this is to create spaces that encourage lounging, talking, and relaxing. No matter your style, you can achieve these things with simple touches like throw blankets, pillows, comfortable seating and a good layout. Don’t buy furniture just based on looks. Test drive the furniture to make sure it is comfortable, the right size, and conducive to your life. Spend a little extra money on soft blankets, good sheets, down pillows, and appropriate lighting. These things are the finishing touches that really make a home reflect it’s owners and take it from house to haven.
Everything you need is right there so you can just sit back and relax!
2. Know your style but don’t be afraid to branch out
Like with most things in life, you shouldn’t limit your realm of thinking to just one thing. Very rarely do stylish homes consist of just one type of decor. Even if you are a tried-and-true traditionalist try throwing in a more modern floor lamp for an unexpected punch. Likewise if you usually go for big bold statement pieces try balancing them with a traditional neutral rug. In decorating a good mix is always best. By layering styles you create the illusion of things collected over time (or maybe they really are) and that always translates into a more interesting home.
3. Mix it up
As I said above decor should be a mixture of things to create layers and same goes for the pieces you choose. Mixing dark wood with a light marble or stripes with another pattern creates depth. Don’t be afraid to mix patterns and textures! Not all of the furniture in a room needs to be the same finish or material, in fact it usually looks better if they are not. Same with bedding: a patterned comforter looks great when layered with a textured quilt and an array of pillows. Again you will create a look that reflects your taste and that appears to have more thought than a store-bought set. Start with a base you love and build around it…without following any self-imposed rules.
Other rules to break…
No clashing colors: forget this one! Now you can mix all kinds of colors from red with pink to navy with black. The key is to stay in the same color family but otherwise the options are limitless.
No mixing metallics: As with jewelry, mixing silver and gold is totally acceptable. Having a silver lamp base does not mean you can’t have gold frames on the walls. The hardware does not need to match the other accessories in the room and mixing in textiles with a variety of metallic shades only adds dimension.
Stay away from wallpaper: Although it’s a little more permanent than paint, these days there are plenty of options that are just as viable as paint. If you can’t commit to hanging wallpaper try out the popular trend of stenciling your walls! It’s a great way to add pattern that can still be re-painted with ease (If you can stand to re-paint all your hard work!)
*Thats a free hand stencil!
Neutrals-only on walls: You don’t have to hold back with color anymore! There are tons of choices that have made their way into the “neutrals” category that are just as easy on the eyes. Try a slate blue or plum or at least switch from khaki to a shade of grey. Doors and trim can use a little coat as well!
And last but not least my most important advice to anyone afraid of decorating…the easiest three things to switch out for an instant style transformation are rugs, lights, and window treatments. A rug can totally change the look of a room and instantly makes it seem more pulled together. If I were to spend my money on any one thing that is where I would start. Same goes for lighting fixtures. Whether you add a pair of matching lamps or switch a ceiling-mounted light for a hanging pendant, lights add personality to a room. Window treatments also add a customized look to your home. You don’t have to spend a lot either. Start with a basic panel and add ribbon or fabric for trim. Borders or stripes are a nice, simple way to upgrade boring windows.
So there’s my two-cents! Hope I have helped but if you still feel that you need a little more direction or help please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.