About three weeks ago Riley and I were sitting outside our house on our patio and Riley explained, “Welp, we basically have a shed now.” All the carpet, gone. Lots of drywall, gone. Bathroom, nonexistent. Kitchen, nope. Shed, yeah, it was an accurate description of our house at the time.
There are lots of decisions to make as we put the house back together. And each small decision will play a part in the overall style of the house. Like building a website, a brand, or other creative work, it’s easiest if you have a style guide decided. So I took one out of Riley’s book for building websites and created a style guide for our house.
Step One: Create An Inspiration Board
We began with shared Pinterest boards between Riley and I. We gathered images for each room, items we liked, and houses with similar layouts. The pinning process put visuals to our style liking. It was good to pin a large array of images. It’s interesting to see how you start to pin similar styles. Fortunately, Riley and I pinned very similar styles. I imagine that if Riley and I had different tastes, we’d first have to create a private board just to pin everything we liked, then later organized the images we both liked to individual room boards to create a style we both agreed on.
Step Two: Make Note Of Themes
To better understand why we liked what we liked, it was important to name it. Then we could recognize it later in making decisions. After gathering PLENTY of pins on Pinterest boards it’s time then to start recognizing themes in each pin. A good example of the benefits of this process is when we started picking paint colors. When I was asked, “What color are you painting the walls?” I’d say, “White.” “What color are you painting your cabinets?” Me, “Um, white.” “What color are you painting your baseboard?” Me again, “You know, white…”
This all sounds so drab, doesn’t it? But it’s a not the bigger picture. It’s just got a large white canvas is all. Without the bigger picture in mind, perhaps I’d start doubting myself and to make up for it sounding drab I’d paint my walls a color and really regret it because obvious from my pins, I love white walls!
Start finding themes and write them down. Look for colors, textures, lighting, hardware, and other accents.
Step Three: Create A Color Palette
Evaluate your boards and see what colors you are pinning the most. For us, we pinned whites, birch or maple wood tones, blues, and accents of red, greens and black. This is the most important aspect for me as I can be swayed easily to like a wide range of colors, but not all of them go well together. So if I stick with my palette, decorating will be easy. I will be able to move pieces from room to room and the house will have a congruent style all throughout.
Step Four: Create A Master List
Have I said yet that there are lots of decisions to make? Oh, I have? Well, it’s true. After pulling together a master list, decisions are a lot easier. I’m confident that if each decision fits my style guide, then I will be pleased with it. Now, in all honesty, we don’t always stick to the style guide, because how easy would that be? Riley especially likes to throw in a little bit of extra color or texture. I mean, we’ve got to make room for an orange chair and a gold lamp somewhere, right? Regardless of the small exceptions, defining our style has been extremely helpful!