I was soooooo excited to move into that 800 square foot one bedroom back in 2005!
Since then, I have learned a lot about my own decorating style. The following are not golden rules for decorating – I am always changing what I like, and I am certainly no interior decorator. But as I have had more years to play house, this is what I have learned about my own decorating style.
I am always looking for inspiration. I’m not the best as visualizing potential. I can’t walk into a dilapidated house and see how gorgeous it could be with some paint and knocked down walls. But I can study examples and replicate them with my own spin. I love Houzz for drool-worthy photos and great articles, HGTV magazine and Better Homes & Gardens for their house tours, and the Ballard Designs, West Elm, Crate + Barrel and Pottery Barn catalogs to browse before bed. They have all taught me a lot about what I like and don’t like.
Stick With One Color Scheme
When we bought our first house, I was into bold colors. We painted our living room bright orange and our dining room next to it a dark green. Talk about contrast!
After years of studying magazines, I’ve realized that I like calming ocean colors – shades of blue and seafoam green. Bright white. Soft gray.
Rather than having a different color in each room, I now prefer to have the whole house feel like it’s part of the same wardrobe.
Natural And Vintage Materials Rule
Sea grass, reclaimed wood, burlap, blue glass – I love them all!! They add character to otherwise boring IKEA décor.
Invest In things That Hold Things
Boxes, chests, storage baskets, etc. Storage rules the world, and I have tried to create space in boxes big and small.
From our built in IKEA bookcases…
To the vintage boxes and baskets in the laundry room…
To the Mazen’s wannabe vintage toy box
Use Bold Colors Sparingly
I’ve been trying to use yellow as a pop of color for ages, but it just never worked upstairs because of our beachy feel. But yellow has finally found its home: the guest bathroom! It’s a modern masculine space that needed to be more cheerful, and cheerful is exactly what the yellow brought.
Don’t Buy Terrycloth Hand Towels
For years I’ve been buying terrycloth hand towels for the bathrooms but they never looked very nice to me. Then it dawned on me one day when I was browsing BHG – hand towels in magazines are rarely terrycloth! Since then I’ve started using an assortment of vintage linens and modern dish towels that have more pattern and texture, and I like the look so much more.
White Is Bright
I like that gray wall, but sometimes I just want to paint everything bright white! The houses I love most in magazines have all white walls with colors in the furniture and décor and tons of natural light. I know white can be boring, but it’s what I like most at the moment. If that gray wall didn’t threaten to take 10 coats, I just might do it!
Beach Cottage + Farmhouse = Me
The style I like best is a mix of beach cottage and farmhouse with just a dash of modern thrown in (like the green shade above!) I love the natural materials, light, airy colors and the character cottages and farmhouses get from moldings and nooks. We are thinking of doing some DIY board and batten in the living room above for a bit more character.
What is your home style? Do you love bright colors? Venetian columns? Red dining rooms?