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Toss Out Old Fashioned Home Decor Rules


Is this hard to swallow for someone who generally loves rules?  No, because us Scorpio’s have logical rational for everything.  I appreciate history and have great affection for what came before.  There are interior design rules (balance, focal points, dimension, scale, etc.) which should not be messed with.   However there are some, which I like to call our “mother in our head rules” which either don’t apply today or were too uptight to begin with.

Learning to understand scale and texture at an early age.

It is time to toss a few of your mother’s decorating ideas.  

  • Your dining room does not have to seat 8-12 if you never entertain this large and it definitely does not have to have a china cabinet and a buffet.
  • Ban the matchy-matchy sets or suites of furniture are so pre-1980’s.
  • You can put color in any room if it is appropriate with the rest of your interior.

Blue is just fine in a kitchen!

  • Not all the chairs have to match.
  • Not all the furniture in a room has to be of the same period or style.
  • Not all the woods in a room have to match.
  • There is no correct number of prints, solids, checks or plaids one must have in a room.

It is important to coordinate your outfit with the furniture.

  • Never buy a complete set of furniture (unless you want to advertise you are boring.)
  • Get the voice out of your head: “Will I still like it in 10 years?”  It never proves relevant.  People tend like the same colors over time.
  • You only “need” rooms that fit your lifestyle.

I joke about these types of things all the time with my clients.  It’s true, we get these ideas in our heads about what we can and can’t do in terms of decorating often planted years earlier by our mothers.  This becomes very inhibiting especially when it comes to color.   If you love hot pink, you will likely still love it in twenty years.  (Why else would Lilly Pulitzer be so popular – we loved it as kids and still love it.)  Free yourself from these silly “rules” and decorate with your own style and passion.

FYI: this post is in no way a dis to my mom, she had great decorating style.  Here we are 40 some years ago on my birthday.

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One Response to Toss Out Old Fashioned Home Decor Rules

  1. liz kuhner

    what a great set of photos and it’s apparent that you got at least a portion your terrific design talent from your mom! her choice of furniture in picture #1 would still be cool today!!!

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