How To Combine Decorating Styles With Your Spouse

There are a lot of things you discuss and learn about your spouse in the weeks and months before you get married. You discuss how many kids you each want to have, whether you prefer city or country living, dog person or cat person, vanilla ice cream or chocolate. But one thing that is rarely discussed when you’re planning your wedded bliss is how you’d like to decorate your home.

When you’re first married, most of your furniture and other home decorating items are either given to you by friends and relatives or bought at deep discount sales. Your style is driven more by your budget than your preferences.

Then somewhere along the way, when you’re more secure financially, you start noticing little things start creeping into the house. Maybe your wife has been buying little Victorian accessories, and they’re now adorning every flat surface in your house. You’re starting to panic, wondering how on earth all of those frilly and flowered little tchotchkes are going to fit in with the Asian-inspired design you had envisioned.

Well, don’t panic. It may not seem like it now, but even styles this diverse this can work together. Here’s one way to use your imagination to bring two very different styles together.

Imagine that long ago an Asian furniture merchant traveled to Victorian-era London and opened a furniture store. While living there, he fell in love and married a beautiful and refined young lady. How do you imagine they decorated their house?

Interesting, isn’t it? You’re probably already imagining all sorts of ways to combine these styles in an elegant and charming way. An ornate lacquerware cabinet with a proper Victorian tea set placed on a hand-embroidered cloth. A Victorian chair accessorized with a batik pillow. One room may have slightly more of an Asian feel, than the next a slightly more Victorian feel, but they are all within a comfortable range of each other. Each style within the design reflects a mutual admiration and respect for the other.

There are dozens of ways to combine these or any styles, but how do you keep one style from overburdening the other? You start with a neutral base. Choose your primary pieces of furniture with this in mind. Contemporary furniture is an excellent choice as a neutral starting point between two diverse styles. You can then use accessories and small furniture pieces to bring any two styles together into a contemporary fusion of what may have originally seemed like an impossible mix.

When bringing two design styles together, sit down with your spouse and talk about the different elements that each of you like about your favorite styles. Get a sketchpad and brainstorm some ways that you can combine accessories within your home. Write or sketch out everything that occurs to you.

By having a neutral furniture base and a book of ideas as your common ground, rather than fighting for control over every design decision, you and your spouse will have an overall vision of how your home will come together.

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