Whether you’ve got a new roommate or you’re a couple moving into your first apartment together, learning how to blend décor in a shared space can be– well, tricky. Each individual’s style is their own, and sometimes when you’re living in the same apartment or house those styles can be on opposite ends of the spectrum. Inevitably one person will be motivated by rustic, farmhouse-chic, while the other loves modern, sleek lines. But décor doesn’t have to be the icebreaking argument in your new abode. Instead, Phifer has five tips to share to make decorating a shared space a smooth process. Here are some decorating tips for couples:
5 Decorating Tips for New Couples/Roommates
1. Determine Use of Space
What are you working with? Is your new home a studio apartment or a 3 bed, 2 bath garden home? Much of how you decorate will be based off how much square-footage you have and its function. For instance, if you have a small studio apartment then you will need to determine how you and your roommate or significant other will want to divide the main room between sleep space and lounge space. On the other hand, a larger home can feel empty or too spacious if rooms aren’t arranged correctly.
It is possible to work form into function, so don’t be totally intimidated by lack of or overabundance of space. Although it might be a challenge, organizing a space around its function can help narrow your search for the right pieces. Much like arranging a spice cabinet or kitchen utensil drawer, try to arrange your space around how you know you will need it to flow in your everyday life. Don’t forget about your outdoor space either. If you are planning on entertaining then this is a great way to pick up a little extra space, and is easily made inviting by incorporating comfortable outdoor furniture. It also allows an extra outlet for creativity. Don’t forget to heat your outdoor space during the Winter months! Here’s our outdoor heating ideas for inspiration. By using GeoBella® outdoor fabrics for outdoor curtains, cushions and pillows, you can reflect your personal styles in a fun and entertaining way. Use our outdoor space visualizer to plan your perfect outdoor sanctuary!
2. Determine Individual Styles
The process of decorating a shared space can be simplified if each party is able to identify what their overall style is and can describe it to one another. Some people are drawn to eclectic, bohemian styles while others want classic upholstery, clean lines paired with neutral fabrics. It’s one thing to work together to combine these styles. However, if both parties are unsure of their style or have trouble communicating abstract ideas, the process can become even more difficult. If you’re having a hard time describing your preferred look, here’s a helpful way to identify your ideal style.
- Collect images of favorite looks you’ve seen in magazines, blogs and social media accounts, and make note of your favorite parts of each look.
- Compare each look and determine similarities and commonalities of what you like about each image.
- Do a little research about color combinations, styles of furniture and patterns, and learn about where they originated from. From this information, you should be able to describe your style effectively.
3. Collaborate and Compromise
Bear with each other, here; compromising can be difficult, but it’s totally necessary when sharing the same home. This is where it’s easy to have arguments break out and cause both parties to want to give up. However, with a little patience it is possible to compromise and still get what you want. Here, it’s best to prioritize what elements you want the most and communicate with your partner or roommate about what their non-negotiable variables are.
Try making a list of items you already own, paint colors you want to use, furniture you want to add and artwork you want to display, and rank them in order of most wanted to least wanted. Sit down with your individual lists and discuss them with one another. Take your style definitions and communicate about what part of it speaks to you the most. You might find that your preferred styles are actually more similar than you realized. Above all, the key is communication.
Once you’ve effectively communicated to each other what you want to see the most in your new apartment or house, it’s time to combine it all. While this can be overwhelming because certain things may not look right together, do not be alarmed. There are ways to mix certain looks and tie it all together through outlying elements.
Start by consolidating your negotiated lists of must-have colors, themes and furniture and organize them by room. Referring back to each room’s determined function is important at this step. Once this is done, you can both move on to selecting elements that tie it all together. How can this be done?
Combing colorways is an easy solution to mixing styles. Neutral colors in appropriate hues are the simplest way to bring looks with contrasting patterns, themes and finishes. For instance, if one of you wants a bright yellow kitchen, while the other wants a moody, gray kitchen, an easy solution can include painting the walls a light, neutral color such as a light gray, and painting cabinets or islands a darker color. Finally you can incorporate bright pops of yellow by decorating with placemats, tablecloths and more. The main key is to find the right neutral backdrop that mixes colors, patterns or other elements so that everything ties together.
5. Finishing Touches
Finally, tying it all together can be the most satisfying step of your collaboration in your new home. This is where you can leave room for personal touches and get creative. Objects like pillows, curtains, rugs and other fabrics can really bring a room to life and marry those non-negotiable pieces you may have been worried about. These pieces are easily customizable to combine all kinds of styles and colorways.
For example, if one of you can’t part with the dark, bulky, leather couch in the living room, but the other wants to use light gray canvas wingback chairs, simply use throw pillows that compliment and match the chairs or the couch with a rug that mixes the colors. This is where looks come together, and you establish your brand new style together.
Outdoor Fabrics Couples Can Agree On
If communication is key, then finishing touches are the glue to the whole process. Fabric can be the simplest and most concise way to bring rooms together. Think about how pillows, table cloths, curtains and bedding bring a room together. Sometimes they can even serve as the focal point. All of these items are distinguished by what type of fabric is used. Here is where GeoBella® fabrics come in.
Whether you’re using it for your outdoor space, or it’s being used for indoor pillows, GeoBella® is a great durable fabric with a wide range of colors, jacquards and patterns. From combining luminous and daring color choices to creamy and cool tints, these fabrics have a little something for everyone. Made from reclaimed fibers, GeoBella® fabrics boast the plush texture and comfort of indoor furniture along with the stability, strength and durability needed for outdoor cushion applications.
Ready to Put These Tips to the Test?
If you’d like to learn more about Phifer’s GeoBella® fabric or need some advice, please don’t hesitate to get in touch or contact us via our live chat feature! We’ve got the answers to all your questions and can give you a head start on your couples design project.