During the early days of the pandemic, when we were spending most of our time housebound, I consumed a lot of fashion content. I became really interested in seasonal color analysis and style for the different body types. Throughout my life I’ve wasted more time and money than I’d care to admit trying to wear things that were fashionable but didn’t necessarily make me look or feel my best. Once I took the time to analyze my body shape and coloring, a new world of possibility opened up – one where I can feel natural and good in the clothes I’m wearing. This got me thinking, could a similar kind of personal style exploration apply to interior design choices too? And the answer is yes, definitely!
Have you ever had your “colors” done? I recall my mom having a copy of this book back in the 1980’s. There’s been a resurgence of interest in personal color analysis among younger generations today.
What does personal style mean for interior design?
To me, personal style in interior design means knowing what feels good and harmonious for you, and determining what works well for your day-to-day lifestyle. It also means taking what’s current, or “on-trend”, and filtering it through the lens of your own taste and preferences. At best, our home interiors should function to soothe our psyche, lift our spirits, and make us feel both joyful and at ease. Personal style is the combination of unique design elements that achieve that special harmony for you.
We collect inspiration images when we work with our clients to help pinpoint their personal style.
How to identify your style
You might describe yourself as a minimalist, or a maximalist. Or you may know you have a strong preference for certain colors. Knowing this is a start – but it’s just the tip of the iceberg. Similarly, design quizzes – the kind that sort you into a category much like the Hogwarts sorting hat – are somewhat useful but only in a very broadbrush way. Personal style is more complex and nuanced, and no one else will have a style exactly the same as yours. The best way to figure out your unique style is to start noticing VERY SPECIFICALLY what you like and why, using images as reference. Interested to learn more? I’ve created a step-by-step guide on how to discover your personal style, which you can download for free on my website.
Once you know your style, it will change your life.
You may have spent most of your life living with interior design choices made by others. Which were fine, but not really what YOU liked. Or perhaps you chased trends – you had the Tuscan kitchen when everyone else was gaga for Tuscan, or the Farmhouse kitchen when every other influencer was extolling the virtues of Farmhouse. OR, and I see this all the time with clients – you just never allocated the time or money to cultivate a personal interior, because you had other priorities and demands in your life that took precedence. I get that. But I truly believe everyone deserves the chance to create something that is uniquely their own. Here are four ways your life will be better once your home is a true reflection of you.
1. Your stress level will go down.
Being surrounded by clutter or by things that make us feel regretful, bad or just blah is stressful. The stress may be lurking just under the radar, but even if you’ve learned to ignore or “just live with it”, there’s no question it’s taking a toll. Knowing your style means you’ll have an easier time letting go of stuff that doesn’t “spark joy” as Marie Kondo would say. When your interior is thoughtfully curated with things that are beautiful and meaningful to you, you’ll feel more comfortable and at peace in your surroundings.
2. You will save money.
Are there any pieces of furniture you look at and think, well, that was a mistake! You’re not alone. As a designer I hear this from clients all the time. And the problem is often compounding. Because once you have one thing that’s kind of meh, then you feel stuck buying other things to go with the thing you don’t love, and before you know it you end up with a house full of things you never really loved! When you know your style, regret purchases will be a thing of the past. You’ll shop with intention and according to a plan. Sometimes that means waiting until the just-right thing comes along, or saving up for your dream decor. Ultimately this will save you money, hassle and heartache. So worth it!
3. You will gain confidence and pride.
Do you ever find yourself second-guessing your home choices? Asking your in-laws, your opinionated neighbor, and just about everyone who comes into your home for their feedback? Once you know your personal style and start creating a home that refects it, you will stop second-guessing every decision. You will develop a rationale for your selections that is based on who YOU are rather than on what other people think. How powerful is that?! Ultimately you’ll feel proud to welcome friends into a home that expresses the unique you they already know and love.
4. You will feel energized for a fresh start.
While self-discovery and growth can happen at any stage in life, often it’s the big transitions – marriage, kids, divorce, loss of partner or spouse, retirement – that inspire us to move to the next phase in our life’s journey. In fact, I would estimate more than half of the clients I work with are either going through or have just experienced a major life change. Sometimes those changes can be really hard, but we can also see them as opportunity. Creating a space that reflects their new life direction is a big priority, and that starts with identifying their style. Once we do the work together to reveal their style, I usually see so much excitement from them to see it actualized in their home.
Whether you’re just at the beginning of your journey to identify your personal style, or you’ve reached a point in life where you’re reassessing and fine-tuning your style, the process is inherently rewarding and well-worth the effort. Much like your clothing, your space is a phsyical representation of your inner self. It plays a powerful role to reinforce your self-image and support you in becoming the most refined, elevated version of yourself. And when you know who you are and have the confidence to express that to the world, it’s life changing.
Want personalized, expert guidance to define your Signature Style and implement it in your next home project? Send us a message today!