By way of illustrating how you can find an authentic style inspired by and for YOUR life, I thought I’d share these photos from a story found at Traditional Home online. I was drawn to the cheery bright clear colors and when I read the article, the fanciful style of the home was perfect for this family. Why? The home was originally headquarters to a well-known circus! Their home address? One Circus Place. How neat is that?
To decorate, the family played off of the home’s colorful history, the fact that they adore children (they have two of their own) and that the woman of the home is a children’s photographer (her studio is on the third floor of the house). Their home is all about youthful fun. This house’s design makes sense for them, reflects the history of the home and illustrates their own life on many levels. Whether or not you like the fun colors and patterns, you have to admit this is an original and authentic home.
As you probably know by now, I am not a fan of “theme rooms.” However, with that said, I am a fan of authenticity. There is a difference between creating a home full of your memories or passion for life and getting confused by overdoing a theme. Authenticity can evoke feelings without making everything too obvious. Here, they chose lively, high quality fabrics that produce the same feelings you might have at a circus. It is a happy place.
I like how they were careful to let their furnishings pop, without painting all the walls vivid colors and going crazy with a colored carpet too. The pink chairs and and stripped ottoman are enough. Also, the serious architecture of the home is a nice contrast to the fun decor. This home can handle some whimsy without getting too sweet.
Here, they added colored walls but let this corner of the room have a break in the color by incorporating a black table, simple wood chairs, and neutral mantle. The rug is neutral and this whole corner helps balance things out so you are not overwhelmed by the room as a whole.
When I came to this photo (below) of the clown, I started to worry that the circus theme was being overdone. HA! Seeing the big clown face was (at first) too obvious for me. In designing a home that is personal to you, you still want to keep good taste in mind. It can be easy to veer off into buying everything that screams “this is my THEME.”
But, in this case, as I read more of the article, I found out that the home owner’s aunt was a photographer who a generation ago took circus photos. This was one of her photos. Ok, then! If anyone else had a circus themed home with photos of clowns on the wall, I might scratch my head and wonder (or cry), but in this case, it makes sense! It is a fun conversation piece. So, SEND IN THE CLOWNS, I say! WHY NOT??
I just noticed, that table next to the Designer Guild pink chairs has rings, like in a circus! Clever!
The Inspired Room’s Authentic Style Tips:
1) Consider things in your life (past & present and dreams for the future) that are meaningful to you or your family. Family history, places you’ve been, life experiences and your dream life are all good places to start looking for the real you. No one else will share your style if you are true to yourself.
2) Consider the architecture of your home. You don’t have to match its style, but it is helpful to be aware of its impact as you select furnishings and decor.
3) Learn the art of subtlety. Consider ways to incorporate the significant things into your decor without making everything a “Ta Da!” moment. It is more intriguing to let design elements unfold rather than have everything hit you right off the bat as you walk in.
4) Definitely avoid cheap and tacky. Fun, sure. Great deals, absolutely. Cheap & Tacky, no. Who wants their authentic style to be cheap & tacky? That is not giving off the right vibe at all! You deserve better than that!
5) Incorporate conversation pieces that allow visiting friends to get to know you.
6) Design a room to work as a whole, not as a bunch of individual pieces. Your house can be full of life, memories and color, but the idea is to pull it all together in a tasteful way so that it all works when you step back.
See more photos and the story from Traditional Home here:
designer: Betty Murdock