how to define your decorating style


I am not an interior designer, but I love decorating.  Even before I had a home to decorate, I pulled picture after picture from my favorite home magazines. Pinterest and Houzz are interior design heaven for me! I could look at photos for hours, but looking at pictures and translating that into a room in your home can be a challenge.


The first hurdle when decorating is to figure out the style and look you want for your home. Most people I know have a hard time settling on a particular interior design style. The typical styles: Traditional, Contemporary, Minimalist, etc. all seem a little limiting. For me, design is about infusing your personality into a room.

Our friends at Refinerie have 6 style categories that really resonate with me because they have personality and are more about a look than one particular style. Refinerie’s style categories are Global Inspired, Happy Chic, Rustic Elegant, Modern Glam, Traditional with a Twist and Coastal Updated. I think I want my home to be a cross between Traditional with a Twist and Coastal Updated.

If you are still having trouble settling on a look you love then go “window shopping”.  Go to a fabric shop and see what jumps out at you, or create a virtual mood board by room on Pinterest. You can pin rooms, fabric, furniture and decorative objects you love.



Photos above provided by Refinerie.

My friend Leslie Hunt, owner of LLH Interiors, is helping me with my own home. The first thing we did was go to a fabric store. Leslie had me pick out fabrics that I gravitated toward without worrying about where they would go or how they would work together. This was incredibly helpful because I didn’t overthink anything and we were able to define the mood of each room.




Photos above provided by LLH Interiors.

Once you have pinned to your heart’s desire, see if there is a common thread or theme that emerges. Are there colors, texture or patterns you keep coming back to?

Next look at the furniture and items in your home now. What pieces do you love? Which items do you wish you could replace? You may have one special item or a favorite piece of furniture that can build the foundation for a room.

Don’t forget to think about your life and how you use your home. While I love homes that are white and sleek, that would not work with two young boys and a dog.

Last, make a plan. Most people can’t decorate their house in one fell swoop. Whether you are using an interior designer or doing it all on your own, it is important to make a plan and map out what you would like to do to your home if you had unlimited time and resources. If you have a plan then bit by bit you can create a home you love.

Happy Decorating!



Refinerie is a virtual interior inspiration company.  For one set fee, they will work within your budget to define your style and refine your space.

Recognized for her classic yet eclectic style, Los Angeles based designer Leslie Hunt merges formal design with a relaxed and understated sophistication.

One thought on “how to define your decorating style

  1. Pingback: 8 easy ways to freshen up your home | jane can

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