finding your design happy place


He loves recliners. I hate recliners. But hey, we're pretty happy.


One of the biggest challenges in design is accommodating two different tastes that live under one roof. It has even been a challenge under my roof! I love wallpaper and bright colors, he prefers rustic industrial pieces, hockey memorabilia and oversize leather chairs...Neither of us is wrong - (well he might be with the hockey red light that lights up and blows a terrifying siren through out the house when his team scores...). Like many partners/couples/ roommates, we have the challenge of respecting each other's tastes and trying to blend them. And let me tell you that can be hard...until you just let go a little.

The trick is all about communication and balance. Which is why we are currently reworking the middle floor of our little row abode. The husband rarely sits in my favorite DIY turquoise dining chairs and I sometimes wish his leather recliner fell off the moving truck accidentally. (Though when no one is looking I may or may not lean back in that sucker and sip a little tequila with the housewives on...what?) So as a compromise we are swapping out the dining chairs for something more appealing to him and considering other more tailored "hidden" recliner options. 
You gotta meet somewhere!

I see this same predicament all the time. Working with clients over many months can start and end in many places. Either one partner has full design control, both are flexible, or both are in a power struggle with design decisions. All great reasons to bring in a designer! By the end of the process, I find that most clients grow in their design knowledge and taste and are always pleased when pushed a little out of their comfort zone - even if that means allowing for their partner's taste to mix with their own.

Designers (should) listen to all your concerns, ideas, and inspirations and provide a cohesive plan for your home. But what really allows for the best designs is the ability to be open. I love the challenge of mixing opposing tastes - rustic and elegant can live together. Modern and traditional can live together. Netural and colorful can live together. And all beautifully! See below...

Rustic Wood Brings Warmth to Elegant Furnishings

Modern chairs and a playful chandelier lighten the mood next to a traditional
dining table in Minnie Mortimer's California home.

Yellow Dorothy Draper Chairs add interest in an otherwise serene and neutral space. 

See what I mean?
It actually turns out that mixing tastes makes a room more interesting. And more than that, it makes for a happy household. When all tastes are represented, everyone feels as though they've been heard, which makes everyone feel good which makes living together much more fun.

So give it a whirl and see what happens!

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