Finding Your Own Decorating Style

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Finding your own decorating style is easier than you think. Whether you are young and moving into your first apartment or a seasoned citizen ready for a change, the process is the same. The key is to just surround yourself with the things you love.

As we age, our tastes change. I certainly don’t decorate today like I did in my twenties. In my twenties, I thought that everything had to match. I thought that I had to choose a style and stick with it throughout my home. No matter which style you chose, Mediterranean, modern, Early American, you picked out your living room set as a whole, with matching sofa, loveseat and chair, and matching end tables and coffee tables. We wanted everything to be brand new and, above all, match! We purchased a dining room set or a bedroom set. Well things have changed ladies! We do not have to be slaves to decorating trends or someone’s idea of what is “in style”.

Here are just a few tips to get you started in making your home reflect your own sense of style.

1. Keep a 3 ring binder and clip out photos from magazines of anything that you like. Don’t worry about the colors or styles. If you like it, clip it out and put it in your binder. This binder will become a constant source of inspiration as you decorate your home.

2. Hang on to those family heirlooms – If you love grandma’s gate leg table or her old hand painted plates, proudly display them. The key is to surround yourself with the things that make you happy. My grandmother had a gate leg table sitting in her hallway with the phone on it. When I was a teenager, I announced to my grandmother that I wanted that table! 40 years later, it still sits next to my bed and is one of my most treasured memories. My grandmother’s hand painted plates hang above my kitchen cabinets. In fact, other than my bed and sofa, there is not one piece of furniture in my home that I purchased new. Don’t be afraid to shop garage sales and flea markets. If you see something you love, buy it! If it’s not the right color, paint it.

3. Surround yourself with your collections – I lean toward the romantic cottage style of decorating with lots of whites and pinks; however, I also have collections of roosters and antique birdcages. How do you incorporate roosters and antique birdcages into a romantic cottage, you ask? You just do it! Everywhere you go in my home, you will see a rooster or an antique birdcage. Now you probably aren’t going to see this combination shown in any home decorating magazine, but I don’t decorate my home for them.

4. Choose colors that make you happy. Maybe those pink walls in the bedroom wouldn’t appeal to a prospective buyer, but unless you’re getting your home ready to sell, who cares? I plan to be carried out of my home feet first, so I certainly don’t worry about what a prospective buyer would prefer.

In the end, you’ll find that if you just trust your own instincts and surround yourself with things that make you happy, you will have created a warm, inviting home that will make every guest feel comfortable and welcome. More importantly, you will have created your own retreat away from the rest of the world.

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