Decorating can be overwhelming with all the accessory and furniture selections that need to be made to create a beautiful space. There is so much to choose from, so where to begin?
Determining a personal style can be helpful in keeping a room cohesive and staying on budget by not purchasing items that do not add to or blend with that personal style.
Look online or in magazines: Home decor magazines or online websites like HOUZZ.com can be great sources for inspiration. Don’t analyze too much. Just save pictures of rooms you find appealing. If there is something really special in the room, then make a special note. Same if you see something that is disliked a lot — make note of that, too. I have clients who tell me they cannot decide if they like dark or light kitchen cabinets. I have them bring me pictures of kitchens they find attractive. It never fails; almost all their pictures will be either dark or light. That helps me make decisions in creating a space that I know they will enjoy. Looking online and through home decor sources can also help determine what design style fits one’s home best. Once pictures have been collected, one can see similar patterns or trends (whether most are formal, casual, dark, light, cozy or sparse). Some popular decorating styles are:
Traditional today: Traditional interiors are less formal than they once were but continue to include classic elements. Drapery now is scaled down without swags and toppers, and fabric choices are usually subtle patterns or colors. The overall ambience of traditional decor is homey, understated, and non- jarring. Furnishings tend to match and are consistent. A marker of traditional decor is typically rolled arms found on upholstered chairs and couches.
Transitional: This design style is a mixture between traditional and contemporary. Transitional furniture designs are classic, timeless and clean. Curves combined with straight lines deliver a look that balances both masculine and feminine attributes for a comfortable, contemporary design. The lines of transitional furniture are less ornate than traditional but not as basic as contemporary lines.
Modern: This style might be considered the opposite of traditional. Modern is a very organized, scaled back disciplined style. Modern is clean, simple but sophisticated design. This design style often uses iconic furniture pieces from early 20th century architects and designers like Eames and Miles van der Roche.
Contemporary: This interior style is the most current and relevant style of the moment. It’s really about fashion, and it tends to follow current trends. It is sometimes confused with modern design because of the simpler, clean lines. Modern follows stricter guidelines following 20th century designers. Contemporary is more fluid and tolerates a bit of rule-breaking. Less is more: smooth profiles instead of ornamentation, solid or subtly patterned fabrics in lieu of colorful prints, minimal accessories rather than big collections. Current contemporary trends are pops of color, text, less but larger scale accessories, mixing metals and trellis patterns.
Rustic chic: This style can also be called farmhouse modern, shabby chic or French country. All these styles incorporate rustic and distressed items. This style is appealing to many people with its inviting, casual, “down home” feel. To achieve this look, mix rustic pieces with modern furniture and clean lines to obtainan overall eclectic comfortable inviting space.
Glam: This style, as its name suggests, is glamorous. This look tends to be more feminine. This style can include damask prints usually layered with some bling. Mirrored furniture and crystal chandeliers add sparkle to give a space the sophisticated glam look.
Industrial chic: This style may come across as more masculine and raw with a very casual feel. It gained popularity with recycling and reusing industrial items like machine parts and weathered wood and worn textures to create unique furniture with a warm feeling.
Global chic: This style is inspired by world travels. It may include natural manmade materials and Moroccan patterns and furnishings. These accessories and collected souvenirs can create an exotic and intimate vibe that guests will admire. This style generally consists of textured fabrics, natural woods, bold patterns and colors.
Coastal chic: This style was once only associated with sea side living, but it has become more mainstream as an overall design that inspires calm and relaxed settings through the use of light colors, textures and an organic accessory. Lots of natural light with warm whites, soft furnishings and reflective surfaces will provide the relaxing environment of coastal living.
Decorating becomes a simpler task when one is aware of their likes and dislikes and is able to categorize them. Few people, even interior designers, decorate strictly with one style. A mix of two styles, but with different and unequal proportions, keeps the space from becoming predictable and boring.