Personal style is not something that can be bought or truly replicated. It is not about being elitist, owning expensive furnishings or having high-brow taste. And it is not a matter of copying furniture placement and colours from a magazine either—even if it's just a messier version! Possessing a personal interior style is about knowing how to create a home that expresses your personality.
At homify we believe that everyone is born with bucket-loads of style. If your home doesn't reflect that, it just means that you have an exciting journey ahead of you. A person with a strong personal style is simply someone who has learnt how to tap into what really resonates with them.
Before we go further, we will assume that you have been collecting pictures of objects, furniture pieces and colours you love. If you haven't started yet, it's a really important part of the process. You might start with a picture of an entire, complete suite that is very matchy-matchy or just a few seemingly random decorations. The simple act of documenting or gathering these pictures will help you become more conscious of patterns in colour, shape and form that inspire you. The key is to be open minded and accepting of your idiosyncrasies. Over time, you will develop more confidence and a stronger eye to what works.
To help move along the process of developing your own interior style, we have a collected a few tips. Enjoy!
Walk through your space and take note of things that you love. Similarly, take note of items that add little to the visual beauty of your home. We tend to hold onto items because they have functional value—or because we paid too much for them. If you can't get rid of them, see how to minimise their presence in the home.
Then take some time to go through any sentimental items that have been stored away out of sight. Perhaps you have some beautiful old postcards, an old record collection, a print of a favourite artwork or a drawing by a favourite niece or nephew. There's no point hiding these things away. They represent your life and deserve to be put on display.
Collecting pictures of inspiring interiors will inevitably lead most people to fixate on a unique—and often pricey—piece of furniture or fabric. Try to focus not on the one specific item, but take note of the qualities that draw your attention. Perhaps it's the unique soft shapes of these of crocheted lamps or the shape of the sofas. Look at the colour combinations, perhaps you only like grey when it's teamed with a vibrant yellow like this. These are valuable clues in which to start building your colour scheme.
Now after mixing up your favourite materials, things may start to look a little chaotic—particularly once you start varying the shapes and prints in your fabrics. Again, don't limit yourself by fighting the eclectic nature of your favourite items. Every great home interior has a certain rhythm or pattern —even the most eclectic ones. The key is to find common themes in the weight, colour, texture or even line to unify these items. Set them against each other in a way to highlight these commonalities. See here how a record collection has been used to cover one wall. Although the artwork is seemingly random, all the albums display are either monochrome or possess a mute brown or blue tone.
The current trend of mixing and matching styles is a friendly environment in which to develop your own personal style. So don't be afraid to use different materials. Match your favourite wooden sculpture with that fabulous modern glass table you love or mix up your favourite cushions with some older scruffy ones of sentimental value. In this interior a seemingly random collection of old and new chairs and stools have been unified by a monochromatic colour scheme. The final effect is both beautiful and unique.
Finally, we are all constantly evolving as we allow ourselves to be shaped by the things around us. Our lives are not perfect and our on-going style will not be a collection of perfectly matched fabrics or materials. This is not a bad thing. This is the magic ingredient that will give our homes warmth and cosiness. The juxtaposition of different materials is a soulful reflection of our constantly evolving tastes and lives. Don't fight that.
When we were children, we loved creating things without inhibition. At some point many of us simply stopped drawing, painting or playing music stopped creating with the same free exuberance before we had a chance to develop those skills. But the expression of our inner creativity is an important, if dormant part of our lives. We are not pushing you to start drawing again unless you feel like it. But list your favourite hobbies, music or collections and think about how to display them in your home. If you are a closet romantic, look at creating a room like this. Your bedroom is private so there's no point trying to create a sophisticated decor if you just want something a little rustic and old-fashioned.
If you have always wanted to paint or draw, look at creating your own wall art or get an easel. If this is a little intimidating, start by collecting pictures of your favourite artworks and attempting an interpretation.
If you have been following these steps, you are privy to a little secret. You are already original! The trick is to learn how to be brave enough to show it. If you are feeling hesitant, just take it one step at a time. Perhaps you could even lay a base, subtle and even conservative theme—then start slowly adding pieces as part of your daily life. Next thing you know, you might have a home with papier-mache animal heads on the wall like this!
If you are interested in redecorating, you'll love this Ideabook How can I colour up my life?