Finding your Interior Design Style
Ever ask yourself what is my interior design style? Ever wonder how to pinpoint your design style? Unsure what vision you have for your interior spaces? Not sure where to begin?
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Interior designs should be an experience. Your environment should function in harmony with who you are. When searching for your design style this is an important part of the process. How does your environment make you feel? How would you like your environment to make you feel?
Interior design studies show that your surroundings can provide a sense of security and comfort as well as positive stimulation. The emotional significance of your space can impact your individual emotional state. You want to create a healing, emotionally supportive space of wellness in your home interior.
Do you want your environment to feel like taking a leisurely stroll through the woods, or do you want it to whisper peaceful bliss at the beach? Perhaps you are a free spirit and want a more carefree feel to your environment.
Design styles range from maximalist to minimalist, modern to country, ultra-sophisticated to a more simple farmhouse decor style, and everything in between!
Interior inspirations can come from anywhere, everyday items as well as unusual elements. Regardless of whether your inspiration comes from a babbling stream flowing downhill, a barbed-wire fence, or a beautiful serene garden, you can incorporate those elements into your interior design.
So how do you pinpoint what overall ambiance you want your space to reflect? Finding your personal interior design and decor style can be a real journey. So how do you get there? One very productive process that professional designers use is an “inspiration board” more commonly known as a mood board.
Mood Boards and Inspiration Boards
What is a mood board you may be asking? A mood board is a creative tool consisting of various elements in the form of a collage. This is a visual representation used by designers in the early design process to determine a theme or mood for a space.
A physical mood board can be used in this process with the use of a foam board or a bulletin board where you can attach materials and photos that appeal to you. You can clip from old magazines or photos that you may have collected, samples of fabrics, and other finishes, paint swatches that you pin to your physical board.
You may prefer to use a digital mood board through the use of photoshop or one of the many online apps for this process. You can even create a board on Pinterest for this purpose. Internet searches, Instagram, visual apps, and websites like Adobe and Canva, provide plenty of photo options as well as collage formats.
We recommend starting with a general mood board that includes some or all of the following items:
- Visual images of items, rooms, or other settings that you feel drawn to for inspiration. These can include animals, outdoor settings, and other inspiring visual images that speak to you.
- Visual representation of color swatches, and color combinations.
- Words of inspiration, favorite quotes, etc.
- Textures and patterns in the form of fabric, decor samples, or images of these items. Items such as rugs, throws, linens, pillows, flooring, tiles, and other elements work well.
- Designs and illustrations, fashions, brands, memorabilia, and other relevant images or items.
General Mood Board
You can include anything you like based on feelings, emotions, colors, textures, animals, flowers, insects, people, furniture, houses as well as places such as the beach, mountains, desert, country, city, or other items that speak to you in a positive way.
Your initial general mood board may be random or more specific if you already have a vision for your space. Pin items that you like, including things that you already enjoy as well as things that you have never tried but appeal to your senses.
There are a variety of mood board processes so when trying to determine your interior design style your process will be general at the outset of the project. Look around your current environment and include those things that are special or speak to who you are. You can include your favorite tea, movie, hobby, fabric, flower, sprigs of herbs, or other favorites if desired.
Include New Elements
Include elements you may have never considered before that visually appeal to you. Have you found a setting, room, or arrangement that you like? Pin it to your general mood board as well as colors, textures, and any other elements that give you a pleasant visual experience.
If your project is for a child’s space, then you can include them in this process. They will enjoy picking out the things that they like. You can make suggestions and include items that correspond with their preferences. While going through this process you can use questions such as, how do you feel about this item or color? You can also consider what your child enjoys doing such as hobbies, strengths even their fashion style if they are older.
This general mood board process is one that defines what design elements are in harmony with who you are. You want your space to feel comforting, refreshing, and soothing to your senses. Now you will take a look at what you have collected on your general mood board and make note of any common elements such as wall colors, textures, architectural design features, furniture pieces, decor accessories, and so on.
Second Step, Finding your Interior Design Style
Once you have completed the general mood board step then you can move to the second step in finding your interior design style. You will now make a second mood board and include pictures or samples of the common elements that you noted from your first mood board. You will then add pictures of designs that include those common elements. When completed you will have narrowed down your style and you can begin to make an actual design plan.
Read more about mood and inspiration boards here.
Create a Floor Plan
The initial step in completing the process of implementing the design mood board elements you have created is to prepare a floor plan. You want a layout that is both functional and creates balance in the space. After creating your floor plan then continue with the flat surfaces in your space such as floors and walls. Floors including area rugs are the first anchor in your design and will have a significant impact on the overall look.
The next step will be walls which is the largest color palette and the backdrop of your design. Next, you will move upward to your ceilings which is the second anchor of your design. Consideration should be given to architectural features such as wood beams, light fixtures, and color schemes if different than your walls, in order to anchor the space with the flooring.
If renovating or doing a complete remodel there may be other considerations such as cabinets, hardware fixtures, countertops, and any other built-in construction elements of the design.
Incorporate Decor Items
After the ceiling, you will begin to incorporate décor items to enhance your basic palette. Again start with the floor area, arranging the furniture according to your floor plan and adding additional decorative elements as desired. Work your way up to the walls to determine a focal point. Determine where and what will be your focal point. If you are lucky enough to have an existing architectural feature that serves this purpose, then highlight it. An example would be a floor-to-ceiling stone fireplace with a mantle. Consider what will enhance it as the focal point of the room, such as an impressive piece of wall art or enhancement of the mantle or mantle area.
If your room is basic and has no existing architectural features then select a piece of art or other décor items that makes a statement and arrange the other décor to compliment your focal point. A focal wall is also a good option, using paint, texture, stenciling, or wallpaper that draws the eye. Harmony, balance, and unity are important roles in your interior design.
Repetition of design elements such as color, shapes, and textures can be used to achieve a harmonious aesthetic to your space. Even if your style is eclectic using these common elements throughout the space creates a cohesiveness and harmonious balance in the overall design.
Lighting is an Important in your Interior Design
Lighting is an important consideration in your interior design. Consider what natural lighting you have and what you use the space for. Light intensity for cooking, reading, or dressing should be well thought out. Do you need dimmable light options in the space? Consider if light-blocking curtains or window dressings are appropriate for spaces such as theatre rooms and bedrooms.
Space is another important consideration to achieve balance in your interior design. Is the overall space small, large, square, rectangular, or cut up with room off-sets? Furniture and other physical items in the room should be chosen on the proper scale.
A small room with bulky furniture is a mistake that is often made. Too many small items in a room can create a cluttered environment. Proportion and scale are something that can easily destroy an otherwise good design so consider these carefully when planning your space.
Use room offsets to your advantage by creating shelving space, seating nooks, a home bar area, window seats, a writing desk nook, or an office nook. A nook that can provide a functional purpose to the room is the optimal use for this type of space.
You can achieve harmony and emotional wellness for your space by staying true to what evokes a positive emotional response for yourself and your family. You can be your best interior designer by making a plan, using the right tools, and using the information above to create the perfect interior design.
Whether just starting your interior design plan or tweaking the overall look, mood boards are a great tool to determine what will work for you. We wish you happy hunting to find your personal interior design style. Be true to Yourself!
Read more about decor and design styles here.
Wellness in interior design methodology example here.
TEXINI, The Lonestar Life here.
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Interior design should be an experience. Your environment should function in harmony with who you are. When searching for your design style this is an important part of the process. One very productive tool that professional designers use in determining individual design style is utilizing an “inspiration board” more commonly known as a mood board.
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