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Living Like You: Authentically

Learning to live authentically can take a lot of time. For years I denied my personal style. In my home decorating, I would stifle what I loved because I was confused. There was so much to choose from. The latest trends can be very powerful in swaying what we do with our home decor. I read every design magazine, I watched every show, I loved it all! I couldn’t decide what my style was! Does this sound familiar? I’d buy the wrong size curtains, the wrong color chair, I’d pick up a little table that would be a completely different style… I was all over the place. I’d buy a little thing that felt like it was a solution to a decorating challenge but it could never solve the bigger problem. I had a serious case of Decorating Identity Crisis. I knew what I liked when I’d go to the store but I’d want to take everything home. I would get so frustrated. I couldn’t figure out how to get it all to work. Until I learned how to figure out who I was… and what was best for my home. Creating a cohesive look that feels right when you have a limited budget can feel overwhelming. But there is a way.

The first step is to really dig deep. Write down your top three favorite styles. Study them. See how they relate. Look at each element in those styles to see what would fit in your home. What about those styles brings you happiness.

Ask yourself questions… What kind of a lifestyle do you crave? Do you like the beach or lake? What style art do you prefer? Are you a traveler or a home body? What colors do you tend to like the most? What kind of a feeling do you want in your home? Are you casual? Do you like a more formal atmosphere? Do you enjoy entertaining? Do you have little children or mostly grown? Consider your spouse and what their style is. How can you work them together? Do you both have similar goals for how you’d like your house to look and feel?

It really comes down to; What brings you joy when you look at it? What is practical for your family? The next step after you’ve begun the process of figuring out your style is to edit what you have. Remove pieces that don’t fit. Sell them, give them away, donate, or repurpose them. Purge any clutter. Get down to a clean slate. One fun way to create your personal style is to use the vision board model. You may have done this to envision your life goals. But this is also an effective way to zone in on the way your want your home to be. Gather together your favorite decorating magazines. Sit yourself down and cut out the things that immediately grab your attention and glue to a piece of poster board… and see what you come up with. After doing that for an hour or so, take a step back and look at what you collected and glued down. It will tell a story. You will see some common themes come together…and it will help narrow your focus on what your true style is.

Be patient with yourself and allow the process to flow. Once you have done some of the necessary soul searching and information gathering you will be able to hone in on what your decorating style is. Knowing this will make any decision going forward much easier and you will begin to Live Like You.