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Posts Tagged ‘design style’

decorating style
Sometimes, we don’t know what we like until we like it, but, if we don’t know what we like, then how do we know what we like?

We are all indecisive (and decisive) in different areas of our life. It’s a strength that I have with decorating, but am woefully lacking in almost every other department. Ask me what I want to eat at a diner, and I will always choose one of three things; the choice is overwhelming, and asking me to decide from more than two hundred items on a menu will have me quickly ordering the grilled cheese before you have even turned the page.

Finding our decorating style is a bit like reading the diner menu; we can’t decide, then, when we finally do, we wish we had what the other person was having. But, if we had just ordered what we wanted instinctively, without too much thought, we might really like our choice, and we probably wouldn’t be drooling over the other person’s spanakopita (well, we might, but I am sure if we asked nicely they would share a piece with us).

So, if you’re not sure what your decorating style is (and, like me, diner menu’s make you close your eyes and order the grilled cheese) here is a great little quiz from Houzz that might just help. Unfortunately, you do have to make a few decisions here as well, but I promise you, it isn’t hard at all, and no-one is holding a pen and a notepad over your head waiting for you to finish.

Honestly, I was going to make up my own quiz, but I found this, and it seemed pretty fun and accurate when I took it (it labeled my style as Eclectic), so I thought you might enjoy taking it too.

Just click on the picture at the top, and it will take you right there.

Wendy E. Wrzos http://wendyandthebluegiraffe.blogspot.com/

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We sometimes wonder if we don’t have any, or where we can get it, but really, your style is who you are. It’s that person sitting in front of the computer, the assortment of things on your kitchen table, and all those weird thoughts bouncing around in your head.

After watching far too many decorating shows, we are told that we should fall into one of four or five design style categories; we want to identify who we are, quickly attach a label to it, and claim it as our own. But, narrowing down a style from a choice of four is about as easy as choosing a shade of white paint for your wall. (I truly believe that there are more shades of white in the color-sphere, than there are blades of grass in my garden).

Despite what they tell us, it isn’t that easy, but, it is a lot more fun than you might think…

There is a show on television where the designer asks a series of questions, then comes up with a personal name for the style of the homeowners. Honestly, she has great ideas, but the wacky names alone make it worth watching; it is always something weird and interesting, like Urban Industrial Pancake, or Bohemian Rustic Amphibian (which means that you are a little bit of a hippie, who likes being outside, and your favorite color is green).

As funny as it is, she is giving them parameter’s to work with, so that instead of floundering in a sea of generic adjectives, they now know that their style is, Urban Industrial Pancake (which means that they like things to be graphic and bold, with a few squidgy, flat surfaces).

Maybe we should all take this approach, and instead of having to choose between Traditional, Classic, and whatever else is thrown out there, we can make up our own label. No two people are alike, which means that our decorating style will always be a little different. Why don’t we just string a description together for ourselves, instead of having to decide on just one? I think we should all have at least three words for our style. I think mine, at this moment, would be Eclectic Organized Purple Teacake. What’s yours?

Wendy E. Wrzos http://wendyandthebluegiraffe.blogspot.com/

p.s. The photograph above is from B&B Italia, and could be called Modern Castle Chic.

p.p.s. The television show is called  Secrets from a Stylist with Emily Henderson. I think she is very talented, and I adore her style, but Urban Industrial Pancake and Bohemian Rustic Amphibian are made up, and were never actually featured on her show.

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Have you seen the recent decorating shows that try to define a homeowner’s style? Apparently, we crave a label, and it is their job to come up with fancy names that tell us who we are, and how we should decorate. I was watching one the other day; after several minutes of very intense questions, the designer declared loudly (with a triumphant flourish) that the style was “Bohemian Classic Traditional with a hint of Asia”. Really? What they ended up with was a lovely room, but I am not quite sure if it will ever live up to its rather grand and obscure title.

Maybe we think that it makes decorating easier, and giving it a name helps us know where to begin when we are feeling a little lost. Whatever the reason, I think that style is a very elusive entity, something that can take a lifetime to grow. But, for those days when we just can’t wait, there are a few easy ways to figure it all out.

One of the simplest, is to take a look at your favorite clothes and accessories. Write down some words that  truly describe your personal style, and use the exact same words to find items for your home. eg. classic, eclectic, polished, comfortable, modern, simple, bright/shiny, fitted, vintage etc.

Another idea is to look around your home at what you already have; what do you enjoy, and what do you wish you didn’t have? Do you prefer easy-to-clean surfaces, copious collections, a large or small television, squishy or straight-backed sofa’s, familiar or original art, rustic or modern, carpets, tile, linoleum or hardwood, chandeliers, lamps or recessed lights. Be honest with yourself, keep what you love, and don’t worry about what other people may think.

If you’re still not sure, take a few moments to think about your ideal home, and how you would want it to feel. This isn’t a pipe-dream, and it may not be your current reality, but it will help you to create your own design inspiration.

Of course, how could I write about this without mentioning some of the fun on-line quizzes that will tell you your design style. Here are just a few for you to try…
http://my.hgtv.com/style-finder/stylefinder.esi
http://www.homegoods.com/hghq_quiz.asp
http://www.furniturefirst.com/furniturefirst/find_style.inc

Wendy E. Wrzos http://wendyandthebluegiraffe.blogspot.com/

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I love this photograph. I literally looked at it for ages when I found it; wanting to see what was in each cubby, and wondering how I could replicate it in my own home. My sister would hate it, she is far more minimal than I am. I don’t know where she even puts all of her “stuff”. She thinks my house is cute, but cluttered. I prefer to think of it as eclectic.

As much as I try, I need to have most of my belongings out for me to see, which can lead to a constant organizing of the chaos that could happen. Not a hoarder by any means, I have just become more visual as time marches on, and I have learned what works for me. I can tell you everything that I have, where it came from and why it is so special. So can my sister, but her things are put away, neatly, and her home has a serene feeling that mine will never have. Well, maybe for a day or two, when I will try really hard, but then I will miss what I have and re-organize it all again. The cupboards will be empty, but the shelves filled (I know I have that backwards).

My point is, that we all have different styles and needs, so fighting against  your instinct, is a fruitless exercise. No-one should feel uncomfortable in their own home. For me, I will constantly attempt to straighten what I have, but I will always end up with a different version of the same thing, and my sister’s home will remain beautifully serene (squirreling away her things into secret, hidden compartments, magically re-appearing when necessary).

Both different, but both loving our homes. What’s your style?

Wendy E. Wrzos http://wendyandthebluegiraffe.blogspot.com/

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