How to Find and Define Your Personal Style: Part 1

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Personal style can be a very elusive thing. It can be hard to pinpoint exactly what we want our homes to look like. Part of it is the sheer wealth of choice, there are hundreds of colour palettes, trends, textiles and furnishings to choose from and put together. It can get pretty overwhelming. But I think the other part of it is confidence. You have to feel seriously brave to paint your home in neon hues, or decorate all in white. It’s far, far easier to go with the crowd and blend in, even if that’s not what your heart really wants.

Part of my job is helping people not just find, but actively define their own personal style. The aim is to be able to describe it in as few words as possible, for example: minimalist, neutral, vintage infused. Being able to quickly define your personal style makes it much easier to communicate what you’re looking for to designers, retailers and craftsmen. (It also helps with Google, Pinterest and Instagram searches).

Finding your personal style doesn’t happen overnight, it takes time and thought, and preferably a mood board or two. But here are some tips to help you get there.

Make a Mood Board

Yep, I’m diving straight in with this one because it’s the easiest way to figure out what you’re drawn to. Pinterest has made it easier than ever to create mood boards, no cutting or sticking required.

First, create a board just for interior design, and then start pinning any images you love. Don’t worry if it seems like you’re drawn to all different styles right now. What a mood board does is provide a great overview of everything you like. Then you can pick out common themes (such as colour palettes or furniture styles) and use these as jumping off points for defining your own style.

Decide What You Need From Your Home

Personal style is intrinsically linked to the way we live our lives. It’s often viewed as a shallow distraction but in reality, style (and design) can make our lives significantly better. There’s a whole psychological aspect to design that we sadly don’t have time to delve into, but I’ve touched on areas of it here and here.

So to help you find your personal style, decide what you need (or want) from your home. Should it be a cosy safe haven from the outside world? Or do you want to frequently throw parties and entertain friends? Do you work from home? Have hobbies or interests you need to make room for? All of these things have an influence on our personal style so it’s really important to consider how you want to live in your home.

Come back next week for part 2!

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