Decor For Two: Can This Marriage Be Saved? #1:Your Style

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First Things First: You First


It’s your home. You can have anything…. you just can’t have everything. Creating a home that truly says “You” starts with being able to identify which styles you would like to live with and then building within those parameters. Not slavishly, mind you.

Most of us have taste parameters with soft boundaries that can be stretched to fit a few complimentary styles.

If It Weren’t For Bad Taste He’d Have No Taste At All. Every one has a sense of style, for better or worse. One of the biggest obstacles to creating a home that looks like “You” is the lurking dread that your taste will be found to be gauche, rube-like or just plain ugly. This unresolved apprehension results in a kind of “I dunno” default position.

Vague is not a viable style solution.

Abdicating your décor decisions to a designer won’t save you either. A designer won’t be able to give you a version of your vision if you don’t know what it is.

Determining your style doesn’t mean figuring out which tidy little box fits the definition of your taste. This is too much like “color within the lines”. Your home décor preferences will be a reflection of who you are as much your personal taste, almost in the same way that form follows function. We are all complex. Very few people live entirely in one style category.

It’s just as important to understand what you don’t like as much as what you do. Having a basic understanding of why you like or dislike certain things will help you be better able to grasp how to translate myriad options into a style you can call your own.

Not enough cultural exposure? Not likely. We are all bombarded with too much information all the time due to the variety of media that streams our way. The upside of this is that your horizons on the decorating front can be easily expanded with a little thought and specific research.

Go on a mind trip, together. The best bet for both of you is:

  • Go old school. Thumb through interior design magazines
  • Go new school. Browse through the 10,001 great design blogs that are posting 10,001 style approaches every day at every price point.
  • Go get schooled. Leave home and roam. Go to design shows, events everywhere. Be curious and ready to try on a new idea.

Realize and clarify your preferences. Be on the look-out for commonality between styles wherever it exists. This is the key idea to finding styles you both love that will also live well together.

Next Time: Decor For Two: Can This Marriage Be Saved? #2:  Lifestyle

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(Decor For Two: Can This Marriage Be Saved? Three Part Series)

Decor For Two: Can This Marriage Be Saved? #2:  Lifestyle

Decor For Two: Can This Marriage Be Saved? #3: Happy Ending

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The original version of this post was published on in 2009. It’s presented here as a foundation for further topic discussion.