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Evolved Over Time or Less is More?

by | Aug 3, 2009 | Decorating Inspiration, Details | 79 comments

Evolved Over Time or Less is More?

Evolved Over Time or Less is More?

Evolved Over Time or Less is More?

Evolved Over Time or Less is More?Evolved Over Time or Less is More?

I saw this collection of photos over at Southern Living (and the bedroom from Southern Accents) was curiously drawn to the simplicity of the design and the color scheme. I say “curiously” because I have noticed my design taste has evolved over the past few years.

In the past I was really drawn to the “evolved over time look”  — more patterns, colors, accessories and mixtures of styles. Things that “go” but don’t necessarily “match.” In fact, I still am drawn to that look. But lately I have also been intrigued with the peace and calm a design like this offers.

I think choosing a simple color scheme, less accessories and a lot of solid fabrics and walls like in these photos does simplify the design choices and the process.  If you are starting from scratch it is fairly easy to duplicate a look like this.

Successfully pulling off the “evolved over time look” with a wide variety of patterns and colors can be a real challenge.

However, reality is that most of us have all sorts of random pieces and upholstery we have to pull together or want to use, and it is not always financially feasible to recover or redo everything just to get this “less is more” look. Especially on a budget! It can be done but it would require some effort, patience and careful editing. And probably some sewing skills and a big can of spray paint.

So, let’s have a little fun weighing in on the “evolved over time look” versus this streamlined “less is more” look. They can both be lovely, but which do you lean towards right now and why? Which one is easier for you to pull off?

photo inspiration: Southern Living Laurey W. Glenn
bedroom from Southern Accents: Antoine Bootz


  1. Bella Casa

    I love them both, too. I am decluttering this week though…so I must be in the Less is More mode right now ;)

  2. janice

    This is a fantastic post, Melissa! I think you’ve hit on a problem that keeps a lot of folk stuck. I do homelife coaching and this is definitely something I hear often. It’s my own personal conflict, too.

    I love both so I use the whole house and garden as my canvas! I adore seaside vacation simplicity but I have kids under 14. (We only have one living room; that’s it – no family room, study or den.) I’m also old enough to have collected precious mementos and books I struggle to part with. So, I have to keep things simple and functional because of space.

    I keep all ‘clutter’ together, in cabinets or on strategically placed shelving units (God bless IKEA and wood stain) and have very little art on the walls. That way I have the clear space I crave, but the odd comfort spot where I can feast my eyes on satisfying groups of things.

    I also solve our dilemma with glazed inner doors, plain wooden floors and the same white woodwork and cream walls throughout the house, except for the dining room. I have an accent wall in my daughter’s room, but the objects, cushions, throws and art in the rest of the house are full of the colours I like. That’s what pulls the house together – my taste, whether there are one or two objects in a space or a cupboard full. That’s why I coach folk on authenticity and values, personal passion and style before we even get to redesigning.

    We also have removable covers on the sofas so I tend to change curtains, rugs, sofa colours, cushions and duvets in the summer for a light coloured, less cluttered, simpler look, and go ‘richer ‘ and more ornate in the winter.

    Sorry for rambling, but I adore this! It feels like I can be my honest, homeloving self here among other women who are just as passionate.

  3. Julie

    I really love the look you’ve posted. Less is more and plainer fabrics easy on the eye. Less on kitchen coutertops etc. I think if you choose certain pieces and place them in the right places you really get a nice effect. I really like the home that was posted , just a plain centerpiece but the light above has abit of design to make it hold its own. I can appericate the other look also….. but prefer to live with less is more . Julie in Holland……

  4. nel

    I prefer living with the simple, streamlined look with a little bit of ‘evolved over time’ bits and pieces thrown in to keep it personal and not too sterile. Every time I try to go too much for the evolved over time look I get sick of it very quickly. Lovely photos.

  5. Becky K.

    I think our style preferences reflect what is happening in our lives. Right now with the kids making drastic growing up kind of changes I find myself wanting things to be simplified because there is so much busyness and chaos (on some levels) in my life that clutter is making me crazy. Sometimes my brain translates layers of beauty as clutter…sorry.

    Just sometimes.
    I can almost always appreciate it in photos… but living with it is another matter.

    Becky K.

  6. The Blushing Hostess

    Everytime I attempt less is more a conversation with my upholsterer usually sets me straight… it can be done all at once with good things but for a fortune and still takes forever anyhow… anyway, I like the feel of some new and some patina. There is nothing appealing to me about a room ordered in one fell swoop from (insert furniture retailer of the moment).

  7. Gail McCormack

    Very interesting to me at the moment

    I’m decluttering and repainting – I thought a plain soft white background would be easy to work with – but no! seems to be more confusing than ever, I don’t want to over clutter, but then I don’t want it looking sterile and no character – so I am very much enjoying your posts – hoping it will come to me soon and fall into place – the idea of a certain WOW color or Feature which has been mentioned in your last few posts is the key I think – sorry here I go thinking out loud – but thanks Melissa for the inspiration

  8. Marian

    I am a shabby chic lover, so for me more is nicer, lol. I DO like the pictures you’ve posted but also they are a bit too bare for my taste. AS I said, love the shabby chic/romantic/roses look myself so you bet I have a lot more knick knacks and thingymajigs in my house. I do try to turn things around, put some away and get others out again, but always a bit TOO much for others but just right for me ♥

  9. Irene

    Nice post, Melissa. I think unless one starts from scratch with a fair amount of resources, both financial and human, i.e. a designer, a seamstress, a carpenter, and if they’re in the family, the better, that streamlined look is nearly impossible to achieve.

    Most of us change work and living locations many times in our lifetime. What fits perfectly in one space is difficult to house in another, but often hard to part with if one cannot afford to replace it with something that would fit better. In other words, most of us make do.

    Now, the art I think lies in pulling those odd pieces together. Finding new uses for old furniture. For example I have two furniture items that could be described as consoles. I first used them at the shop for fabric sample books. Then for the printer/scanner etc. We then took them home in a flat without cupboards to speak of where they were used as open shelving for pans and pots.

    In this house one of them is used as a book case in my workroom, and the other one has had two lives, first as a shoe rack and then as a magazine stall.

    One of the reasons I like blogging and your blog in particular is that there is this trend of making do with our stuff in clever and tasteful ways.

    So, if one is starting off, yes, plain with accent colors is good. If one can sew, slipcovers and cushions are fine. Otherwise, I must I think agree with Janice: if we follow our hearts and real tastes that reflect who we are, everything will (more or less) fall into place!

    Thank you for your beautiful, thought provoking posts!

  10. Suzann

    I am definitely a less is more “streamlined” kinda gal. I used to love to have things here and there, etc. But as I’ve aged (and they warned me about this) I tend to be seriously drawn to the simplicity of less. Not busy, not cluttered, clear surfaces, more monochromatic with a pop here or there but never too much. I am definitely all about less.

  11. laney

    …what goes around comes around…i see and feel a lot of the 70s coming back into interiors…so many of the young designers are discovering the look of 30-40 years ago…there are no new thoughts…and there are no new designs…just new minds and eyes to ponder and see ….calm spaces in decortaing—–and how i hate that word…decorating is what we do to christmas trees…not homes—are sometimes necessary for our need of quietness…but there is nothing more comforting than the treasuered clutter of a life well lived and a home well loved….

  12. Emily

    I agree with Becky K completely. I love the evolved over time look in magazines (and at the cottage!) but in my own home with two kids, it’s just easier to keep everything streamlined right now. I love simple, clean, and uncluttered. But I love when I read magazine articles about beautiful homes that a couple has lived in and brought their collection of books and dishes and such that they have gathered over the years. I like the idea of that – building up to what you want slowly and simply as you can afford it. I am not about to go out and buy 500 things to put around my house to get the evolved over time look. So, I think, for being 30 and having 2 kids that my house completely fits where I am in life. Even when I do start to collect things, I usually replace something else because I can’t stand the clutter. That may change when I am not tripping over toys all day. The toy clutter makes it so I can’t stand anything else that is too much.

  13. Pat

    I’ve always loved the evolved over time look. Although, I like both the evolved over time and the clean lines, uncluttered, less is more look.

    I find, as I grow older, I’m leaning toward a less is more look for our home. But, at the same time, I am striving for warm and comfortable, within the less is more style.

  14. Denise

    I LOVE these pictures! I find myself going with less is more, especially after completed my new kitchen. I now find myself analyzing the other rooms and now want to re do everything…ugh…baby steps, right? I may be using your consulting services soon if you are up for it! We are in the midst of a home addition and I have ideas for my new bedroom and bath and want to run it by someone. Kids go back to school next week, so then I will have more time. Hope you are feeling better~

  15. Emily-Sarah

    I love both philosophies. Right now I’m “evolved over time” by default. Hubby and I have been married almost 17 years and in our current house for 13 — AND I am the unofficial “collector/archivist” for both sides of my families. (Relatives bring the most beautiful family heirlooms, big and small, to me, knowing they will be safe and cherished.) This means we have amassed a collection of things … amid a house that is constantly reemerging (a kind way of saying we’ve always got projects in progress). Whenever we move, I both look forward to and dread the letting-go process that is sure to take place. (And I will be looking for the next-in-line family lover of history with which I can entrust some of those antiques.)

  16. Mrslimestone

    Either style can be beautiful – its all in the execution to me. In my opinion, this works b/c they’ve repeated a lot of the elements over and over. At the same time, this look can get pretty tired if you are sick of that shade of green.

    Something like this looks like a young, fun couple – maybe someone who hasn’t had the time to have it evolve over time. This would look a little less good to me if I knew the owners were 80 years old :)

  17. Astrid

    I love those photos.

    However, they don’t seem real to me. How many of us start out with a clean slate and all the cash we need to purchase new furniture. Most of us have hand-me-downs. Plus, my decorating style has evolved over the years. And it’s still evolving! I see new things and think “WOW! I want to try doing that” so nothing in my home matches. Probably why my house looks like a mess! Art Deco trying to live with Craftsman who are both angry at my stupid 90s leather sofa & loveseat…not exactly a pretty sight!

  18. Laurel

    I love the less is more look. When we bought our first home, we had nothing – hardly any hand me downs. I would rather have nothing and save for what I want, then fill it up with stuff I don’t like. As we’ve been homeowners for awhile now, it’s the look we like. I also like the energy and focus to be more on the people, rather than the stuff – you know?

  19. Stacey

    I love the evolved over time look without a lot of clutter. Some of the rooms we see these days look staged to me instead of livable.

  20. Charlotte

    Most of the objects that are featured are of substantial weight and size and not little bitty this or that’s. Actually the “less is more concept” has been envolving for the past couple of years with interior designers pushing more modern clean lines in furniture which has spilled over into traditional and country home design. Frankly, I really like this concept because it means less things to dust and keep clean and it also presents a more calm atmosphere in the room. One trend that I’m seeing pop back up again in magazines happens to be this idea of going back to wallpaper on the walls (bed & bath) which once was popular about ten years ago. But adding wallpaper to a room is easy, it’s taking wallpaper off the walls that the big pain in the you know what!

  21. Stephanie

    Right now due to my inability to commit to fabric choices and also a limited budget I am in the “evolved over time” phase. Which makes my home look very “less is more”. But I do like to fill my home with things I love. Putting finance issues aside, unless you are a professional decorater, I don’t know how you can just decorate everything all at once. Unless you are just filling the space to fill the space, and not really creating a home.
    Most of us are on a budget, and this can be a blessing in disguise. Then we make no hasty decisions & can really mold our house into a home.

  22. janet

    I like the “evolved over time” look because my house and I have both done so.

  23. alisha

    I love both! I find myself waffling between teh tow. I yearn for a lived in look, but want it to be sipmlistic and light in design as well. But my eye really does gravitate toward the less is more.

  24. Jaime

    I love this post, Melissa! I struggle with this too, and I agree with a lot of what the previous posters said. I lean towards the “less is more” philosophy, because I feel more relaxed in a neat, decluttered atmosphere, but I worry things look too sterile and plain. I like the idea of an “evolved over time” look if it’s pulled off without clutter. Thanks to my two children, my “evolved over time” look right now is due more to fingerprints on the windows and crayon on the table. :)

  25. Stacey

    I really prefer a “less is more” approach to my decorating. For one, I’ve just downsized, and clutter just makes a room look smaller! Plus, Hubby and I prefer a clean, airy look since our lives are so hectic most of the time! Calmer colors, too!

  26. Margaret

    I love the “evolved over time look”, and I couldn’t imagine parting with the many collections and paintings that I’ve acquired over the years. However, what I have noticed as I’ve gotten older and the nest has become empty of children, is the need for a more neutral color scheme. I used to love a punch of red. Now I prefer a soft and soothing palate. I like timeless, traditonal furniture and accessories, so I have never followed the latest decor fad. This has served me well. Evolved and tranquil is how I roll these days!

  27. Jennifer

    I so need two houses! (ha!) I love both looks…as soon as I get one idea done, it seems I want the other look. So, our house is becoming a combination of the two looks. Den and study are definitely “evolved over time.” I love knowing where pieces came from, when we were able to finally make that special purchase, and the comfort of it. We are in the process of redoing our bedroom and bathroom; it’s becoming a simplistic, less is more approach. There is also the challenge of marrying two styles without seeming like you so indeed have two houses in one. color helps there. I love the peacefulness and tranqulity of the space but it has not been cheap. It seems one thing brings on another thing. Having said that, I have begun to keep a list of what I like so I can “find” things along the way. It’s almost there….the big project of redoing all the flooring is having to wait for now. Oldest is off to college …enough said.

  28. Lorrie

    I like both the uncluttered look and evolved over time. My personal philosophy is more uncluttered. I like some empty space on my walls, my floors and my countertops. But I also enjoy creating vignettes here and there and that’s where the “evolved over time” comes in. I change the vignettes as my mood dictates – usually with the seasons and then store the other things away. And I don’t have tons and tons of stuff in storage – just accessories. My bookcases and my china cabinet provide enough “busyness” for the everyday.

    Those photos are lovely, by the way, and I always enjoy looking at what others have done, at the same realizing that it’s been staged for a magazine shoot. But so much inspiration there!


  29. Chele

    I love both also! In our situation right now, we have a lot of trying to put together the things we have. I love the streamline look but it’s just not practical right now!

  30. Beverly

    While I like the look of uncluttered simplified spaces, it’s just not my style. If there’s an empty space, I have to fill it. And I love layers and textures. Wonder what a psychologist would say about that?

  31. songbirdtiff

    I am definitely a “less is more” person. I have only a few patterns and colors in my home. My coffee table doesn’t have a single thing on it, and I like it that way.

  32. Penny

    I love both looks. I have noticed now that I am moving I think I like a streamlined /evolved over time look….The best of both worlds!

  33. Rhoda

    Hey, Melissa! I love these pics, I could totally live in that house. But, reality is I have more stuff than this and would probably hate to part with a lot of it. I’m drawn to both looks, but I think for me personally, I’ll stick to my tried and true plan and let that evolve. I’m always tweaking here and there to update & refresh things, so that works for me. But, these pics are sure inspirational, esp. since i love that green so much.

  34. Christi from Charm & Grace

    I, like you, seem to fall somewhere between the “evolved over time” and “less is more” looks. And it just may depend on the room. I don’t want a lot of color and stimulation in my bedroom, so the colors there are soft, warm, and mostly neutral… with the exception of floral (soft colors, though) bedding. However, my living room is alive with color and “evolved over time” accents. Great topic, and I really do love those pictures… such a tranquil looking space (and love the quotation printed on the wall.)


  35. teresa

    I’m working into the less is more look lately- not sure why, I usually like lots of color- but I seem to be moving towards clean lines- not sure why, maybe I just need a quite space =)
    The pictures you shared are great.

  36. tina m.

    Evolved over time look for me. I am one always looking for things to add to a room so my rooms truly do evolve. LOL To me the pictures above are TOO matchy, coordinated. Now I do like less accessories, less THINGS. But in those pictures, while there are many single aspects I do like, and I like my rooms to flow together, coordinating, those rooms are just too much of the same thing for me. Just my opinion!


  37. Tamara

    I like the Less is More look since it’s more calm and controlled. I NEED order in my life since the farm is always so BUSY :)

  38. Linda

    We just built a new house and had the opportunity to “reinvent” our spaces. This included a massive throwing out of “why are we keeping this” stuff that we did not want to move. In the new place we have a couple of areas that are definitely less is more – tranquil & soothing. We also have rooms that have evolved over time. Particularly as I get older, the family treasures, the bits and pieces from trips and events, pictures, gifts, even re-purposed bits of junk are all things we are happy to live with. Somehow they all work together.

  39. rue

    While I can appreciate the less is more look, it feels a bit sterile. I can see young people living that way that are just starting out, but when you’re (rapidly) approaching 40 and owned quite a few homes over the years, it’s quite natural to develop a revolved over time look. I couldn’t possibly get rid of our family heirlooms or the many antiques I’ve collected, so I make them work together. It may not be appealing to everyone, but I want my home to feel comfy and cozy and my stuff to mean something, not thrown together after buying everything in one day. That said, the pictures are beautiful, just not something I could live with ;)

  40. Jeanne

    I LOVE LOVE LOVE that home!!! I don’t deal well with clutter, so simplicity wins for me. Although I don’t think that look can’t evolve over time, too.

  41. Flower Patch Farmgirl

    I do love evolved over time, but I seem to personally veer toward less is more. I think I like looking at pictures of the former, but it starts to feel too busy and cluttered in my own home.

  42. Nicole

    I just want to say thank you for giving the link to the photo. So often on the www it is credited, but I can never find it on the original site. Thank you!

  43. Gina

    I do like both looks too-but I think the most important look is the one that fits your family, your life and your budget. I love the simplicity of those photos, but I also love the way my home is now simply because it reflects life right now. With three kids, a simple look is better since they bring in so much life and energy all on their own!

  44. Kim

    I loved the photos you shared. I could go for that look. However, my house tends to have the “evolved over time” look. Only because I am a collector and can’t bear to part with my treasures. But I would love to have a “less is more” look just because it seems calmer. But I’m sure I would end up not feeling comfortable in a “model home” type home.

  45. the BLAH BLAH BLAHger

    Oh, good gravy…is my house an example of “evolved over time”!!! I bought it seven years ago when I furnished it to be trendy. As I’ve replaced pieces, I’ve become so much more traditional and drawn to antiques and high quality workmanship. I wish I could have met my 2002 self and given her a smack in the face before she bought all that crap. Ha!

  46. LeeAnn Balbirona

    There’s a lot I like about the above photos: the green paint, the bright white cabinetry, the shiny subway tile, etc. The bedroom looks too cluttered to me. I wouldn’t be able to live with all that fabric around me. The other rooms I like but only if the styled elements are removed: the big, useless vases and dead branches, the topiary on the counter, the impersonal art (giant pears, giant coral–reminds me of paintings you see in offices or department stores). To me, this house looks like a catalog photo spread and not a real home. It’s impersonal and nonoffensive, but maybe it’s just been styled that way for the magazine. So if you took all the decorative art items away, and I could replace them with items with personal meaning, I would find those rooms very livable. I would still need another room though for all the books and kids’ stuff–you don’t see that in any of the photos!

  47. Françoise

    Hello Melissa, it’s been a long time since I commented. I fall into the older reader who is simplifying. One way of doing this without sacrificing too much is having a cold season and warm season look. This way you can rotate rugs, cushions, paintings, and objects. You can also re-arrange furniture. For example , I tend to look less at the garden in winter and move chairs/sofa around to face the center of the room and grow bulbs in pots on the coffee table.
    I have to agree with others who commented on that shade of green. Ladies, that is NOT flattering to the complexion, especially in winter!

  48. Kathy

    I love that green! While I don’t usually find myself drawn to white cabinets, I do like the way it looks with the green on the wall in that first pic. I find that as I have gotten older, I have more patience for the “evolved over time” look.

  49. Monica (peapodsquadmom)

    i love the look of those pictures, but my own style seems to swing more toward the “evolved over time” philosophy. i enjoy a home that is NOT cluttered but that feels warm and lived-in. i also love the heirloom pieces that have been handed down to me because they bring a very special energy to my space. all new “stuff” would lack that for me.

  50. Magchunk

    I’m a fan of “evolved over time”. While the rooms in the post are *pretty*, they don’t look like a home to me, just sort of like a hotel or fancy rental. Problem is, at 24, I haven’t had much time to “evolve” so I have to borrow from my parents or scour antique stores. I think a home is really made up of items that you love. If an evolved over time room simply has every impulse buy from every trend, it’s going to look cluttered. But if you truly love every item, they’ll go together somehow. May take a little creativity, but it will work!

  51. SoBella Creations

    I love the simple look of the rooms. They don’t look too cluttered.

  52. Donna at Funky Junk Interiors

    Honestly, I can do the best makeover in any given space, and take glorious pictures. But the moment my camera shuts off, reality sets in and my carefully arranged whatever has morphed into a catch all.

    Knowing that, I attempt to decorate sparingly, however careful to include well used and functional pieces to avoid a museum feel. While the mag photos are stunning, they aren’t reality for long in a real functioning world.

    An evolved over time PLUS less is more theory is typically my type of decorating. You get the warmth AND uncluttered feel.


  53. Will

    I agree – my interior tastes change as I get older, but I find this intriguing and exciting to see how I will view an object as time goes on.

  54. Jessica

    I LOVE the green and white. So gorgeous!

  55. Kathy

    I love the look of the rooms you posted and have been trying to declutter, but I also struggled with letting go of books and collected things. One way I cope with this is to change things out with the seasons. In the summer I like a simpler look and keep things pared down and use bright colors. I have neutral walls, floors and window treatments and that make it easier to change out pillows and accessories for the seasons.

  56. Tracy

    While I love the “less is more” look of these photos, I am a decidedly “more is more” person. I don’t want to commit to streamlined when it would restrict me from bringing in some new, fun color or pattern that caught my eye today. I like the mix of old and new, crisp and crusty, neutral basics with colorful, patterned pillows, rugs and accessories. And I’m old enough now to know that I couldn’t stop myself if I tried, so “more is more” it will be!

  57. angie at junkgarden

    I love the “less is more” look but I find I have a hard time living it. I’ve currently been decluttering and right now I’ve really been into the crispness of green, when I’ve never been a green person. Thanks for the pics.

  58. Puna

    My look is definitely the evolved over time look. I have so many things from years past that do not match yet I can’t part with. I do love the uncluttered look on this post, maybe one day.

  59. Brandie Kajino

    Love, love, love that idea of using the fabric of the bed! May just have to do that in my own bedroom…

  60. Jessica

    I love the “less is more” look in these photos … but I am just not a less is more kinda girl. I can’t decide. I love too many different things. I love more colors and to be able to move and change. Plus I have 3 kids, a husband, a full time job, a side business, and family and friends. That “less is more” look doesn’t have any piled up laundry or dirty tennis shoes! laundry piles definitely fit better in the “more is more” look … :-)

  61. laura trevey

    Decluttering gives me such a sense of satisfaction!

  62. Kristen ~ The Pajama Mama

    I started noticing that I was drifting to decorating in more of a minimalist fashion after years of layering.

    Pictures of Mid-century Modern rooms appeal to me because of their simplicity, yet when I would try to emulate them too much in my home, one thing-a toy, an alarm clock, etc. out of place-ruins the entire look.

    My home is much more cozy then minimalist, but is always striving for simplicity.

  63. Sarah

    I found as I’ve gotten older, and added more children to my family, I have a definite goal of “less is more” and calm, simple color schemes. There is so much action around my house, I can’t imagine adding to it with many colors, or alot of stuff. The simple style brings more order to my life and brain.

  64. lylah ledner

    Seems as if the majority of the women here are with the Less is More category…..I like to think I’m that, except while up here in Portland and doing a little Vintage shopping/looking, I’m squeezing into my suitcase a little set of shutters…Thanks Melissa…this is totally your fault, you know….:-) I also found a few copper pieces to add to my French Country type kitchen…so, so much for less is more….:-)

    Great post…as always….you’re a love.

  65. Kate at Centsational Girl

    I find I fall into both categories. My style somewhat evolves over time, but I stay pretty traditional at heart. Less is more when you seek serenity in your spaces, but I also find that major furniture pieces should be purchased with careful thought and not for instant gratification. Both decorating styles have merit !

  66. Kathy

    These photos were so calming that I made a quick visit to the SouthernLiving website. I read each of the pages related to Jill Boothby’s home, but I never found the bedroom. Was it from the same home, or was it from another site? Thanks again for your post.

    • Melissa

      Hi Kathy, wow, you are so right! Doesn’t it look like it goes in that house? I ran back to check and sure enough, it wasn’t from that house. I updated the post to show that bedroom is actually from Southern Accents!

      Ha, I just gave them a new room, their bedroom was different. Oops! I love the bedroom I posted though so I’ll leave it up. The original bedroom can be found via the first link I shared. It is pretty too.

      Thanks for pointing that out! I try to be accurate but sometimes I lose my mind.

  67. Loretta

    I am definitely an “evolved over time” kind of gal. But the part that I find most difficult is not ending up with a hodgepodge of styles, cluttered and nonappealing. I often would like to ditch all but my most loved pieces and get rid of it all and begun again. Fortunately, I’d have to win the lottery so I continue to love “evolved over time”.

    The Southern Living spread definitely looks like “less is more” as everything is so coordinated – and lovely!

  68. Hasley

    less is always more to me – clean, crisp. adore the black accents with the green.

  69. Eleanor Woodfin Craig

    Funny you should pose this question. My husband and I both adore antiques, so we like the “evolved over time” look. In anticipation of a move to a smaller, quainter home, we are going through the “less is more” process, culling anything that is not “useful or beautiful” as William Morris suggested.

  70. Deanna

    I have always been an “evolved over time” kind of gal, and with 6 kids and lots of their things I find we still live that way. However I am always working toward paring down, simple things.

    I have never been big on clutter – I know people who live with houses that look like they are country stores, and I always wonder how they “live” there!

  71. mary

    I feel like with me, the two go hand in hand. Some handed down or ‘saved from a flea market’ pieces with modern less is more are exactly who I am! I think you can marry the two by only keeping things you love over time and keeping it simple. I loved those pictures.

  72. New Every Morning

    Can you believe, that I just added these pages to my ‘keep for ideas’ notebook? Yes, I ripped them out of my S.L. (heresy, no doubt) just yesterday.
    I love the clean look, and the colors are delish!

    • Rachel

      New Every Morning..I have one of those idea notebooks too. Helps keep down the magazine clutter…although there are not as many magazines to buy nowdays.
      I find that I am decorating in a cleaner, less cluttered style. It’s fun to switch out accessories with the seasons/holidays. You don’t need to show everything you have at one time.

  73. Amy

    I am always drawn to the streamlined look, but my house never seems to end up that way! I’m more of a mess:-)

  74. PamperingBeki

    I absolutely love these photos! I could easily live in that space.
    But I’d need someone to keep it clean for me. Haha!

    I’m definitely a less is more kind of girl. Neutral walls, neutral furniture… Then if I get bored I can add fun throw pillows in bold fabrics, hang funky artwork, etc. And I am fickle so I do swing back and forth quite often.

    But I never just “add to”. When I put something new up, something old has to get put away. That keeps things streamlined.

  75. lana

    Evolved over time (and time again) is the look in my home.
    However, I try to keep my bedroom with a bit of the less is more theme, so that it is peaceful and calming and much easier to settle down and rest at night.

  76. Toni

    I love the photos featured here! I am striving for the “less is more” approach, but something that is warm, inviting, and traditional. We inherited some wonderful antiques and sentimental pieces from my in-laws. I am trying to incorporate them into our home without having too much stuff.

    My son has asthma/allergies autism, and sensory issues, so a “less is more” approach is essential for us at this time. Visual and physical clutter are too overwhelming for all of us. I am going for soothing colors, neutral palettes on the walls, and punches of color from a few accessories and photos.

    Now, I just have to get started on more decluttering!

    Great post and thanks for sharing!

  77. erin

    I am in a less is more mode. I bought a model home that was already decorated but at the time I loved it. Lots of browns, kind of a traditional look between tuscan and french country. It is very pretty but I find that I just want to streamline everything and go for a crisp clean light look. I saw these same pictures in Sountern Living and fell in love with the design. I think the change in the economy has everyone feeling stress and confusion outside of the home so when they get home they want smooth easy lines, no clutter and happy calming colors like blues and greens. Its amazing how it all ties together.



  1. I Spy…Sweet Touches & Charming Details - [...] much as I appreciate and even strive for a less is more approach, I am very much drawn to…

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