The decorator's den

How to find your decor style

1:18 PM

Finding your style starts with finding what you like: favourite colours, items. Start building your decor style around those things that you are attracted to.

A couple of months ago, as part of the same series, I blogged about ones individual decor trait and what mine was. How I liked homemade accents, crafty things and bright colours. What I failed to touch however, was how one find their home decor style in the first place.

The truth is that there is no one fool proof way to do that. Some have a more step by step approach, some have a very instinctive one, and some need a lot of help and inspiration to figure it all out. Home decor style is determined by current or past trends and your personal tastes. If you are planning to give your home or even just one room a makeover but aren't sure about what you want exactly, you need to start figuring that one out first. The tried and tested method to get some ideas about this is a fairly simple one, made even simpler now with websites and Pinterest.

Your first task is to collect magazines, browse websites and blogs about home decor and check a few books on the topic. Open a Pinterest account as well if you don't have one already. Then, simply leaf through all your literature, bookmark pages having photos you like, cut them out of magazines, pin websites to your Pinterest, and build a wish list of sorts. At this point, do no worry about the feasibility of a look, or the cost, or even the focus on the overall result. If there is anything in the picture you like, even if it is just the colour of the tea cups used as a prop, save it.
Once you have a big enough collection of picture, look at them again, one by one. If they are newspaper and magazine clippings, I encourrage you write notes on them such as :  "love the wall colour", "pretty curtains"... Soon enough you will see a pattern emerging. When we go and select thing we like instead of making a point to go out of our comfort zone we end up realising that there are things that keep repeating. Like, the preference for a certain colour palette, or a certain style of furnitures, or a certain overall look.

For me, my to go to, most basic decor trait is the use of the colour blue. If you have been following me for a while and looked through all my pictures on this blog, you probably noticed it too. It is my colour, and I built a lot of my decor around it. It is not that I don't like other colour, far from it, but I invariably end up going back to it, instinctively I might add. There is nothing wrong with it, there is nothing wrong with having a comfort zone when it comes to home decor. Truth be told, I'd rather see someone confess an absolute love for something like antique carved furnitures or the absolute attraction for something like orange than see someone just copy the latest trend look seen in every magazine (all white minimalist look and cold marbles...I'm talking about you). Again, nothing wrong with the all white look, if that is really what YOU like in the first place. But, I suspect very few actually dig the look at all, and just opt for it because that is the "safe" fashionable thing to do. In the very same way the 70's were all about avocado green and orange paired together. I kid you not my bedroom was made in this combination simply because my parents thought it was in fashion. Said room is still vividly imprinted in my memory, and that is not a good thing.

Once you figured out what your basic style is, work with it. If you plan on redoing your whole home, start making some mood boards for each room. Pasting little details you would like to see in said room on a piece of paper or in a notebook; be it paint colour swabs, the picture of a particular bed sheet, or a lamp you really like. Play with ideas, and slowly build a decor that is entirely YOU.
As you probably know, I take a lot time to make decisions about my own home decor. I, after all, spent 10 years finding a dinning set I liked. And, I usually spend months working on a thing as "simple" as a painting. Changing my mind very often about the process too, because that is part of who I am. I'm the intuitive type, my home is a never ending process. Which, for us, is a good thing considering we moved so many times in the past decade. I constantly reinvent things, and that constant flow is as much part of the core of my decorating style as the use of the colour blue is.

My last tip to you is to not rush things. You don't have to find that personal signature style right away, take some time if you need some; and plan a room at a time. Leaving  ample room for flexibility in the process as well.

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