Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Overcoming Style Indecisiveness (Part 1)-- Finding Your Personal Decorating Formula

I'mmmmmm baaaaacccck! As you may (or may not) have noticed, I took an unofficial blogging hiatus during the month of February-- partially due to an overabundance of family "stuff", and partially due to decorating/DIY burnout (February Funk, if you will)! But the good news is, I am back, and I may actually have a  room reveal to share with you soon! Well, hopefully as soon as this beauty arrives:

Source: jossandmain.com via Kathryn on Pinterest

This beautiful Joss & Main wall mirror is my first "expensive" (i.e. over $20, brand-new) home purchase EVER! Six months ago, I would have never had the courage to actually purchase something this big and dramatic. You see, I suffer from a terrible case of "Decoratingis Indecisionis" ("Decorating Indecision"), which, as I only recently realized, was a direct result of not knowing my personal decorating style.

"Like it" vs. "Live With It"
See, six months ago, if you would have asked me to label my decorating style, I probably would have said something like "thrift store chic" or "cottage eclectic". To tell you the truth, I love so many facets of different styles! But I am coming to grips with the fact that just because I like it does not mean I really want to live with it! :) I can drool over tiny powder rooms with dark, glossy walls, or frilly French toile bedding, but honestly, I would probably hate it if that were in my house (okay, I might like the toile, but my hubby definitely wouldn't)! So I've been working on narrowing down my style from "everything I like" to "what I want my house to be."

Source: houseofshe.blogspot.ca via Kathryn on Pinterest

Style is a Formula
 I've also realized that decorating style is not limited to one narrow "genre" (like farmhouse vs. modern)-- rather style is a cohesive formula, a recipe blend of several different types.  And just like any good recipe, the ingredients need to be properly identified in order to have a result that you will enjoy. Over the next week, I'll be walking you through the steps I took to find my "personal formula"!

1) Start with a quiz-- or two or three!

 Yes, I was the nerdy kid in school that thought tests were fun! :) These actually are, though... I promise! (and they're not graded!) While these style questionnaires are certainly not the "final word", they do help you begin to understand how your personal likes and dislikes translate into decorating. And the more "windows" into your style preferences you can get, the better you will be able to define your personal style formula!  Here are my favorites:

This is a pretty easy one-- pick your favorite item from each of a series of "multiple-choices"! (Just go by your gut, and don't over-analyze.) Keep track of the results of each question, and at the end you'll find the key to decode them and find your primary decorating style!
My Results:
Primarily "Cozy Casual," with a touch of both "Sophisticated Classic" and "Modern Eclectic".

 This style finder shows you about a dozen different rooms, which you rate by "love it," "like it", "just OK", "dislike it", or "hate it."
My Results: 

If you can only take one quiz, take this one!   Definitely the easiest style quiz ever-- simply select your favorite 5 pictures, and the Stylescope will pinpoint your primary and secondary styles (since most of us have more than just one)! This quiz doesn't stop with the basic "country" vs. "modern, but it defines the nuances of your style-- are you a Boho, an Urban Funk, a Classic, a Set Sail, a Socialite, a Spa Life, the Traveler, a Vegas Baby, a New Country, a Farmhouse Glam, a Modern Metro, or a Sassy? 

My Results:

Find your formula.
Everyone has touches of different styles that add up to your own unique "personal formula". But do you see how we find common threads through the test results? Add together the results of each of the tests to find your personal "style recipe". (For instance, if two tests say you are primarily "Elegant/Sophisticated" and one says "Modern", then your formula would be Elegant with a touch of Modern, or "Modern Sophisticate".) My personal style recipe is "Chic Coastal Classic ": 2 parts Casual Coastal , + 1 part Classic, with a dash of Chic.

"But what if the results don't fit?" 
When I got "Set Sail" as my primary type in my first Homegoods test, I was really quite surprised! I had been focusing more along the lines of "country cottage", and I hadn't even realized how much I really did love nautical style! But after I took a hard look at my Pinterest boards, I realized how much coastal decorating had crept in without me even noticing it! (But that's tomorrow's subject...) That's why when it comes to decorating (including quizzes), I live by the motto, "If one is good, then two is better, and three is just right!" :) 

Go ahead, take the tests, and let me know what "style recipe" you came up with! Did the results surprise you?

(Oh, but you can't just stop with a quiz or two... Tomorrow we'll look at one of the best helps (and one of the worst hindrances) to discovering your personal style: PINTEREST!!! Stay tuned....)

Parties I link to:



  1. Nice to see your blogging again! I did notice....occasionaly checked to see if I missed you posting.

    To my results:

    #1 I was pretty even between all the letter. lol
    #2- I had Cottage Chic
    #3 Farmhouse Glam


  2. pinterest has definitely helped me define my style! it's awesome.
    cozy casual
    french eclectic
    sassy and a touch country.
    we are completely different! love these!

  3. #1.Cozy Casual

    #2. 46% Mountain Lodge Style
    31% French Eclectic
    23% Classic

    I have to say if it came down to how I would do MY home I would do French Eclectic! Mountain Lodge is nice in other people's houses but not mine. :) though I could be convinced ;)

    #3. The Traveler (and a touch New Country) :)

    Love these! thanks for sharing! looking forward to the rest of the series!!! :D

  4. My results were:
    1: Sophisticated Classic
    2: Socialite & a touch of Boho
    3: Contemporary

    loved the quizzes! :D


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