When my team and I work with a client, the early process is sometimes to determine what their style is so we can go forward with a new design. It’s normal to like lots of styles; however you have likely already started a direction in your home. You could do this yourself , however, we do this every day and can make better use of your time. Your style changes over time based on your experiences, education, travels, reading etc.
Start by flipping through copies of your favourite design magazines and place sticky notes on the pages that appeal to you most including why you like them. It could be colour, furniture, structure or a detail, however, you will start to see a trend emerge. Carry a camera to take pictures of things you believe work well or look beautiful. The collection will tell a good story.
You can go in many directions and while some design firms believe in “right” and “wrong” in terms of style, I believe that you have to love where you live and the details around you. YOUR style is what is ultimately important to us. Perhaps consider your favourite hotel. The design direction is generally very clear so if you are most comfortable at the Banff Springs Hotel versus the G Hotel in Toronto, you’ve got a pretty good clue as to your personal style. Either is achievable, provided you love it!
DON’T PLAY IT SAFE
People are often attracted to a transitional style; neither classic nor modern but somewhere in the middle. It is a pretty safe style to work with and rarely will anyone have a strong reaction to this styling, good or bad. Sometime fear keeps people from taking a chance on something that may suit them more. A designer can move you slightly out of your current comfort zone towards your ‘real love’.
FIND ART YOU LOVE
I think one of the most telling things to do, is to visit an art gallery. Do you find yourself drawn to simple blocks of colour or to the more detailed landscapes? What are the colours that make up the image you are attracted to? What comes forward is an emotional reaction to pieces that are abstract or very contemporary or completely classical. There is no exacting science to what resonates with you and it should come with no judgement. Remove the element of what you are “supposed” to like and simply react with your emotional self. We, at the studio, are here to make sure it all functions well for your life and results in a sense of happiness when you get home at the end of the day. Of course it is possible to do it on your own however I always believe that if you think it is expensive to hire a professional, wait until you hire an amateur. Discovering your style is just a process but I promise you, everyone has got style!