Chapter Two: What's Your Style?

Begin your design journey by discovering your own interior style with chapter two of the Houseology Design School in the Masterclass.

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Design School

When it comes to a brand new design project, it can be hard to know where to start – creating a design scheme that flows through your space and reflects your own unique sense of style can be a daunting challenge. And while there’s no shortage of beautiful furniture and accessories out there, how do we bring them all together to create a cohesive sense of style?

Whether you’re decorating a new home from the ground-up or working to update a few key spaces, here are the strategies the design professionals use to find inspiration and identify their sense of style.

Be mindful when it comes to design trends – your primary focus when you’re investing in furniture and other expensive elements of your interior should be style rather than of-the-minute fashions. The best way to incorporate trends is through subtle changes; use soft furnishings to bring in colours, styles and trends you enjoy. This will help to ensure you are keeping your space fresh and lively without the hassle and expense of a major overhaul every time the seasons change.

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01.Finding your style

The first step in your design journey is to find inspiration and get a sense of how you want your home to look and feel. Inspiration can come from anywhere; think back to holidays you’ve enjoyed, favourite hotels and happy memories that evoke a strong sense of place. Is there anything that stands out? Perhaps you love the bright, airy atmosphere of a holiday villa, or think back to a moody or atmospheric restaurant where you spent an evening in the company of good friends.

Take note of the spaces you see around you – shops, restaurants, the homes of friends and family, and even homes you see on television can all be sources of inspiration.

Identifying your style is where the fun begins. How do you want the room to feel? What do you want it to say about you? A mistake made by a lot of people is being influenced by too many, often conflicting, styles. This can lead to an environment that feels chaotic and disorganised rather than stylish and comfortable.

Narrow down the options and identify some key points about your style that will act as the guiding principles when designing your interior. Are you drawn to an easy, comfortable style? If this is you, steer towards a neutral palette with accent colours, lighter timbers and softer shapes which are elegant, timeless and pleasing to the senses.

If bolder, hotel style interiors strikes a chord with you, look for glamorous, dramatic elements and fabulous details in chrome and black to help you make a statement.

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If you prefer a more Urban style, on the other hand, seek out cool and contemporary designs that are bold and fresh. Highlighting architectural features, using iconic design pieces and mixing bright white with vividly colourful accessories will help convey a style that’s full of fun and attitude.

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The web in particular is an incredibly useful resource where you can see amazing interior designs from around the world. There are hundreds of online blogs and design resources you can browse to give you the inspiration you need. Also seek out ideas from print magazines, newspapers and design books which are filled to the brim with stunning pictures that will help you to imagine how your space will look.

Collate a scrapbook of cuttings from home and interior magazines, build boards on Pinterest and use our moodboard tool to keep track of what you find appealing.

At this stage, the goal is really to get a feel for what works for you and determine any patterns emerging in terms of what appeals to you or what turns you off. Do this for a couple of weeks and very soon you’ll have pulled together your own moodboard with a clear representation of what you like. Adapt this to create your own unique style and always refer back to your original inspiration when thinking about how to develop your designs.

moodboard

02.Signature Houseology Styles

We have developed three signature looks to help make it easier to create a professional interior design scheme in your own home. Luxe, Chic and Urban are the building blocks of our luxury home interior collections - by understanding the key elements of each of these styles, you’ll have the confidence you need to incorporate aspects of each into the rooms of your home.

Chic
Our Chic look is easy, stylish and relaxed – it’s all about creating a wonderfully casual and effortless ambience. Look to nature for inspiration when you’re choosing your colour palette, as this style brings together an eclectic mix of furniture and textures from organic materials. Set against a neutral background ranging from off-whites to deeper tones of taupe, this look draws a sense of warmth and comfort which is timelessly stylish and effortlessly chic. To create this look at home, use well-chosen luxury furniture pieces that set the mood for your space and offer the freedom of change with wall colours and accessories to complement your mood and the season. The colour palette in this look is warm with inviting bursts of colour. being added according to the season. Bold Mediterranean blues are the perfect summer accent while rich Marsala reds are gorgeous winter warmers. The Chic look is about creating an atmosphere where you instantly feel at home in rooms that are understated yet perfectly put together and wonderfully accented with eclectic pieces to showcase designer flair, travels and personal interests.

chic

Urban
Our Urban look takes its influence from mid-century modernist designs fused with contemporary styling to create a bolder and more striking interior style. The key to achieving a sleek Urban look is to start with a monochromatic palette. This provides a beautiful canvas to layer with iconic furniture pieces have stood the test of time. Accent colour is another important element in an Urban scheme, adding character and vitality to the finished look. The colours you select should be personal to you – red, yellow and blue primary colours as well as chalky pastels are all great examples of Urban palletes that work really well in this look. Use an accent hue to highlight statement designer lighting and chairs and balance it with your black and white background. Smooth engineered finishes work well on surfaces in the Urban scheme and glass, metal, rubber, plastic and pale oak timbers are classically Urban. Textural fabrics bring warmth and tactility to this interior scheme and textiles with bold colours and printed graphic patterns are key.

urban

Luxe
Our Luxe look is sophisticated and stunning, bringing together subtle combinations of luxurious materials and dramatic tones in tactile finishes. This look is all about unpretentious glamour, achieved through attention to detail. The devil is in the details in this look, in the form of piping, buttons, studs and trimmings, all of which combine to create a discrete yet sumptuous ambience. Creating the feeling of opulence is signature to the Luxe look, so consider this when you’re selecting materials. Silk, fine linen, velvet, fur and cashmere in tones of soft silver, mercury, pepper grey and rich midnight black accented in dark jewel tones or contrasting monochromatic neutrals creates a feeling of luxury that is simply irresistible. The richness of these gorgeous materials is paired with a simple black and white colour scheme and classic designs. The Luxe look’s palette is built on a foundation of timeless monochrome, which ensures that your room will always stay in style. The materials used heighten the feeling of glamour and opulence in your home through cleverly selected accessories cleverly positioned to make those iconic finishing touches.

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03.Own your style

The best way to ensure you are expressing and staying true to your style, is careful planning every step of the way. Decorate with the things you love; don’t feel bound to a particular style or design rule for the sake of it – the key is to take on board professional wisdom and translate it into something that really works for you.

As you pull your look together, plan each purchase carefully and avoid any costly impulse buys. Make lists and keep a clear idea of your style and the pieces you need to help achieve it – if you can bring pictures, fabric swatches or even your design scrapbook with you as you go, all the better. Keep track of your items and receipts so you can return any items that aren’t quite right, and don’t be afraid to play with layout and placement as you build up your room.

04.Next steps

Now that you have established your style, you are ready to put your inspiration into practice and start making firm design plans for each room. Remember, don’t rush this stage as it is crucial to ensuring your interior design ideas are a success!

chapter three

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