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Discover your decorating style

August 20, 2010

Seems to me there are as many styles are there are people though often our style is a twist or another of some pre-existing style. I love visiting homes that helps me understand the personality or interest of who lives there. For instance, a book-lover who decks out his or her home with bookcases filled of treasures or a pet lover who has pictures or trophies from the pets displayed in a fun way.

I think my style is a bit global:

– a bit African,


a bit Indian,
a bit Moroccan,
a bit French

– it is also a bit Bohemian, a bit contemporary and a little rustic country. So – when I play around I always know if I find anything that falls in any of those ranges there is a good chance I will like it. I guess this pretty much entails every thing but somehow I can make a distinction between them.

So what is your style? Do you know what your style/styles is/are? Do you do have a style no one else has? What do you do differently?

Sometimes it is easier to answer this question in the opposite – do you know what you do not like?

I usually assign some homework to people who ask me to help them so that we know where we are going and can get a sense of what would make them happy.

1. I ask them to go to the library and look in design books and to buy a few interior design magazines to tear out pages of interiors they love (obviously not from the library books).
2. Sometimes I lend them some of my binders with tear outs and some of my book as often they liked my style or something about my style and is looking for something similar.
3. Since it is hard to know why we like a specific interior I ask them to write down what they like about every picture they have torn out. If it is a chair – do they like the shape, the pillows, the fabric, the texture, the size etc. and I actually also often will ask them what they don’t like.
4. I try to get an understanding of how much space we have and how many purposes each room and furniture has to fill by asking them what they do for fun, what hobbies they have, if they are neat-freaks or more relaxed, if they like to have folks over or rather go out etc.

I really just help people who do not have a lot of money to spend on design but still wants to live in a nice place – almost all of them are renters, live in New York City and live in places the size of a large stamp. Also, working on a small budget is often more fun to me as it pushes your creative buttons.

All of this helps me – and them – to get a better idea of their style.
Some people suggest looking in your closet to see what you like but that would never work for me as all my interiors would be either black or purple since that make up about 95% of what I wear.

If you start taking notes of your surroundings and things you tend to be attracted to it won’t take long for you to know your style and how you want your place to look.

I have been collecting interior design clippings for years, which is also a fun way to see how your style changes over time – what stays with you and what goes.

If all fails – here are some links to tests you can take: Better Homes and Gardens has a simple color quiz using feelings about color to help you understand your decorating style. Or you can take:
What’s your decorating style? from ivillage.

Have fun and let me know what you came up with!


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