Wednesday, April 13, 2011

What's your style?

Can you classify your style of design? Like I said before, I'm what my hubby would call a "design mutt" - a "Heinz 57" (as we say in the south for a mix of all flavors). One of the great things about getting older or finally growing up (some!) is that you learn to loosen up and not feel so obligated to follow the rules (not about right and wrong, but pretty much everything else).

I used to be much more calculated in my design, and wanted to make sure I did things "right" by design standards, but now I don't worry much about that. Just like I used to hate abstract art, until I was teaching at the Art Institute and learned to love it.  I've learned to just go with what I love and who cares if it doesn't all fall into a certain category? Design rules are good as guidelines, not absolutes. In my opinion (and that's all it is...just my opinion), you're not a good designer if you can't step out on a limb some and just go with what the client likes. Figure out a way to make it work! That's what makes your work "great" and creates invention and discovery:)

If I had to describe my style in everyday words it would be a mix of Ballard Catalog, Pottery Barn, West Elm and old Hollywood regency/glamour. In other words, a little modern, country, rustic, french, Scandinavian, old glamour, and lots of beach cottage (we used to live on the coast and my heart's still there). I love beautiful things, but not impractical. Life's too short to be impractical and uncomfortable. I want you to sit down and put your feet up, let the kids play and relax soaking in the atmosphere and beauty around you.
My favorite word is "juxtaposition" because that describes me to a T. I like to mix it up. Sticking too close to one style is boring. Adding the unexpected makes if fun and exciting! Contrary to what you might think from my previous post about color, I don't like wild, over-the-top. I love soft colors with an occasional pop of something bright. It took a long time for me to realize that I actually tend to prefer to keep my home more neutral and soft because it's more relaxing, which I definitely need. I've always used my house as my showcase or portfolio and I've been blessed to have a husband who pretty much gives me cart-blanch to do what I want around here. (Then again, maybe he just gave that battle up!)

Here's some pictures I pulled from my "inspirations" file that are good examples of how I like to use color in a room (although some of the rooms are a little stiff for me style-wise):

Color in artwork!
Painting via And George by Abby Kasonik

Color in the back of a built-in or piece of furniture.

via Martha Stewart

Plants and accessories.

Laren Liess via Verdigris Vie (?)


Again, artwork and pillows.

Via Verdigris Vie

 Ceilings, accessories and fabric: Notice the detail around the drawers!

Via House of Turquoise

Only on walls and a few accessories.

Again, not sure... via House of Turquoise?
Did you notice I like to tone it down by adding lots of neutrals, wood and white? I love some white in a room. A soft white, not sterile. It makes it feel open, light, bright and happy. But, you do have to have some black or dark brown sprinkled around to ground it.
See this gorgeous painting I have hanging front and center in my dining room?

Talk about abstract! But, it's my absolute favorite piece. Know why? My two older boys did it for me when they were just 3 and 1:) I will always remember them stripped down to their birthday suit and diaper (to prevent ruined clothes...not cause we paint in the nude around here!) having a ball with Mommy's paints and brushes.

See what I mean about loosening up? If I'd not done that and learned to love abstract art simply because of the feeling it evokes, I'd have missed out on the joy I see every time I look at this beauty! Bet you want to see my house now, don't you? Well, I'm gonna be mean and make you wait. I will post pics before too long of the finished rooms and maybe even post ones of the rooms still in the works. You can follow the progress that way and see how my brain works!

So, what's your style? Do you really express it or to you keep it reigned in because it doesn't "fit" into a certain category or with what everyone else's house looks like? God made us each special and unique. We have different tastes. Celebrate it! Make your home a place you love to be. Not with things so much as by creating a happy, relaxed environment that truly describes you.

Miss Bee

1 comment:

  1. I absolutely love your sons' painting. Beautiful, free and a great story behind it.

    Enjoyed browsing your blog tonight. Keep it up!


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