How To Design A Fresh + Airy Room Around One Inspiration Piece

So what does "inspired decorating" mean anyway, and why should you care?

Inspired decorating is a framework for designing an entire space around one inspiration piece that you're head over heals for. Using this framework as a guide allows you to buy furnishings with confidence and edit out all the options that won't work.

You no longer need to feel overwhelmed by all the available choices of home decor + furnishings out there. Using this method allows you to create a personalized space that reflects your individuality without any unnecessary stress.

Ready to learn how it's done?



Step No. 1

Select Your Inspiration Item + Colour Scheme


Your inspiration item has to be something you truly LOVE, something that stops you in your tracks + creates a physical reaction. By choosing something that you feel so strongly about, you ensure that you'll love it for years to come.

Next, pull your colour scheme directly from your inspiration item. Whoever designed it did all the work for you. No need to second guess your choices. This week, I pulled grey, coral, turquoise + yellow from our inspiration piece, a painting by Emily Brown.



Step No. 2

Let Your Colour Scheme Drive Your Furnishings + Decor Choices



Tip No. 1

Accessorizing with grey may seem a bit boring, but having a variety of grey decor items allows your eye to rest between brighter pops of colour.  Think about styling open shelving, built-ins or an etagere... If everything was bright, it would be totally overwhelming. And did you know that grey is the best colour to accent every other colour?

Tip No. 2

Coral is one of my fave colours, but decorating with it may not be for everyone because it instantly gives the room a feminine feel. If you want to use coral to introduce another piece of abstract art into a space that you've designed around a more predominant original painting (like this week's inspiration piece) make sure they aren't too close together in the room, unless they're part of a well curated gallery wall, otherwise they'll just compete with each other. 

Tip No. 3

When decorating with yellow, small doses are key. Eliminate the guesswork of figuring out how much to use in your space by allowing your inspiration piece (our painting this week) to be your guide. The artist only used one small brush stroke compared to the other colours. So, two to three juicy pops of bright yellow would be more than enough to make a statement, but not too much that it's overpowering. And, including at least three pops of each colour ensures that it won't look disjointed or out of place in the room. 

Tip No. 4

Turquoise is one of those colours that can easily sway to the aqua-marine or minty side of the scale. Getting the shade just right is key. Check out this Wednesday's blog post for my tips for decorating with turquoise. Keep things fresh + airy feeling by pairing turquoise with light wood tones.



Step No. 3

Add Major Personality With Quirky Furnishings + Vintage Lighting 


Tip No. 5

Mixing super modern pieces with vintage finds works when you keep your colour story consistent.

Tip No. 6

Be bold + choose a vintage statement sofa like this one over a generic piece. It will instantly personalize + add flavour to your room.

Tip No. 7

Vintage pendant fixtures like these can be transformed into table lamps, giving you the opportunity to further personalize them with a custom lamp shade. Learn more about how to work with me on a custom order.

Tip No. 8

Vintage lamps are a must. Hands down. That's why it's in here twice. You know what? There's no rule that says you can't have multiple vintage table lamps in one room. And, no, they don't have to "match", they just have to "go". This turquoise piece is one that I transformed a few years back. It's since been scooped up and is now residing in it's forever home.



Step No. 4

Don't Forget To Outfit Your Walls With Artwork



Tip No. 9

You can't have too much art. You just can't. Carve out space to add extra personality. This little angled nook could have easily gone unused, but this savvy homeowner found a way to add storage, lighting + a gallery wall, allowing them to make their home that much more unique + effortlessly stylish.

Tip No. 10

This painting by one of my fave artists, Peggy Wolf, would be a perfect fit with the room we're creating from our inspiration piece this week. The coral tones pick up on one of our accent colours, and since this piece is figurative, it will complement rather than compete with our abstract inspiration item.



Step No. 5

Wash, Rinse, Repeat!

Apply these same steps to each room in your home and you'll never feel stuck, or confused, or worried about "messing up". 

When you start with something you LOVE, you really can't go wrong!

If you liked this post, be sure to follow along with my Instagram feed as I reveal a new inspiration item every Monday morning and spend the rest of the week offering up design tips for decorating a room around it.



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