5 Tips to Determine Your Design Style

So as some of you may know, my husband and I purchased our first home in 2014. It was definitely a fixer-upper. It was a bank owned home and since the bank forgot to turn the water supply off, winter came, the pipes froze and things went crazy. When we first walked in it was dark, damp and kinda gross. There was water leaking from about 5 different places, black mold covering the basement and the wood floors were completely warped. But I loved it because I saw the potential it had. I was excited that we were able to literally rip every little thing in that house down to the studs and start fresh.

Our First House

I’m not going to lie…it was stressful. Working full time, trying to run back and forth between work and the house, making sure everything was running smoothly and then making about 17 decisions all at once. Where are the light fixtures going? What color cabinets? Granite or quartz? What color stain? What siding material?

And then you look and Pinterest and magazines and you love like 29 different kitchens and 6 different chandeliers. It’s overwhelming. Because in the end, you want to make the right choice.

So a few months later when all the construction is done and its time to move in and start decorating. And here we go again! More decision making! What paint color for our master bedroom? What rug works best with this sofa? What hardware am I going with? And yeah…again, it’s overwhelming. Because you’re spending all of that money and you want to be sure you’re making the right choice, right?

(I know I know, First World Problems)

I made A LOT of mistakes. Well….. I don’t know if you would really call them mistakes…but I would put stuff together that looked good, but wasn’t really me. For instance, Joanna Gaines, love her, love her show, love her style. I bought this pigs head statue thingy for my wall, like very vintage/farmhouse/Joanna Gaines-ish, I hung him up and named him Wilbur  (don’t laugh because he was actually pretty cute) But after him hanging out there for a bit, I realized it’s not me, it’s not my style. So down Wilbur came and off he went with a nice man from Craigslist with an animal head fetish.


So the bottom line is, trying to pinpoint your design style can be tough. There are a million and one options out there to choose from and there is a constant flow of design trends popping in on your Pinterest feed.

Whether you’re designing a kitchen or decorating your living room, I put these super simple tips together to help you determine your personal design style and get your dream look for whatever room you’re tackling.


1. Drop the Paint Brush- Whatever you do, do not paint first! Why? Because you decide to go with the gorgeous teal paint color you saw in Aunt Suzy’s powder room and then guess what? You’re stuck picking out curtains and throw pillows that compliment that paint color instead of picking out what you actually like. Instead, purchase whatever you love, then choose the paint that will help tie your room together.

2. Track Your Style History- If you don’t have a Pinterest account, I highly recommend you get one. Let’s say your planning to remodel your kitchen, you would create a Pinterest board dedicated to all things Kitchen. Once you feel you have a good amount of inspiration, back track on things that you’ve pinned and look for any similarities. Maybe you’ll see a lot of gold hardware, a lot of white cabinetry. By recognizing the similarities in your pins, you’ll be able to determine what you really, truly love. Ya see what I mean?white kitchen pinterest

3. Organize Your Thoughts on Pinterest- Although Pinterest can be dangerous because there’s just so many amazing ideas, it’s really your lifesaver if you use it right. Decorating your master bedroom? Make a Pinterest board solely dedicated to that room. Pin your bedding, lighting, area rug, EVERYTHING! Being able to see everything all laid out together will help you determine what works together. If you’re not loving the look, keep pinning ideas until you feel you’ve got it right. That way you can see everything together without actually purchasing it. (If you don’t have Pinterest you can easily do this by creating a mood board as well)  Pinterest Sample                                                                                                                                        

4. Be Sentimental- It’s your house, so it should reflect YOU! For awhile there you could go to Home Goods and find like 50 rooster statues. And don’t get me wrong, roosters are cute, but the rooster trend probably came from some farmer’s wife in Oklahoma who had a rooster obsession or something. Trends come and go, but decorate your home with pieces that have meaning, and you’ll be sure to love it in the years to come. For example, are you an equestrian? Drop the trendy pieces and maybe swap them out for items like this……

( Equestrian Frame Set / Ballard Horse Finial )

5. Put yourself to the Test- Still not too sure? Take a test! These 3 are totally fun and will help you pin point your unique design style:


So that’s it! Those are my simple go-to steps to determine your design style. Do you have any tips? What are your favorites?