Today’s post topic is one that’s by popular request! One of the most frequently asked questions I receive any time I do an interior design Q&A on Instagram is how to create a cohesive decor aesthetic in your home. Truth be told, I never really think about it when approaching the design plan for a space in our cabin. But I can definitely see how that can be a challenge, especially if you’re a new homeowner, saving up to renovate, or renting! So I thought long and hard about these tips and I hope you find them helpful.
How to Create a Cohesive Decor Aesthetic in Your Home
Create a secret Pinterest board dedicated to your home
My first step with ANY design project is to start a secret pinboard — btw read more about my entire interior design process here. When you’re first approaching the design aesthetic of your home, start by saving any images that speak to you. And I definitely mean ANY and ALL. Don’t give it the editing eye just yet. This stage is all about saving and saving lots of visual reference.
There really isn’t a timeline for when to stop saving images, but after about a month or two, I typically start to scroll through everything I’ve saved and start to look for similarities and themes. I also take this time to move anything that doesn’t seem like a good fit to a board section called Archive. That way I don’t lose the idea, but it isn’t in the main feed to throw off the overall look.
Pro tip: to find additional, related images for research, open a pin that you like. Then scroll below that to see images that Pinterest recognizes as related or similar and pin from that!
I also like to create board sections and move the pins into those sections based on rooms. For example, every time I saw that I’d pinned something for reference for our guest bathroom, I moved it to that board section. That way, when it’s time to tackle that project, all of the visual reference is in one place.
Decorate with pieces you love
I know this sounds like such a no brainer, but it’s shocking how many times I’m asked what to do if you love a piece and don’t know how to use it! I am firmly of the mindset that if you love something, you’ll find a way to incorporate it into your decor eventually.
A great example of that is a large portion of the vintage artwork now having in our living room and guest bedroom. I’ve had a lot of that artwork for years, but it didn’t always have a home. Now that we live in a larger home and my decor taste has shifted, I’m able to pull them out of storage and use them!
The idea here is that if you truly love something, you’ll figure it out. And that love you have for a piece of furniture or decor is major component into designing a cohesive home that you truly love and that fits your personality.
Create a color palette for your home
Color is one of the easiest ways to give a home a cohesive decor aesthetic! That doesn’t necessarily mean painting every room white or a neutral. Instead, as you’re selecting paint colors (check out my tips & tricks for picking paint colors BTW), compare the swatches to others in your home.
For example, as I chose a shade of blue for our guest bedroom, I compared the options against the green paint on our trim. Even though there is a door separating the spaces, I want the home to flow. The shades of blue and green needed to feel complementary, but different. Almost like cousins instead of siblings!
I also recommend using the same shade of white whenever possible to create cohesion and flow. So even if I paint only the trim white, I use the same white as the wall color in our living room.
Pro tip: Save swatches of the paint you end up using, as well as other visual references in a folder, such as fabric or wallpaper. That way, the next time you tackle another design project, you have everything in hand to make sure you create cohesive decor plans!
Stay true to the architecture of your home
When it comes to defining and embracing a cohesive look in your home, the biggest suggestion I have is to make sure you honor the style of your home. For example, if you have live in a bungalow built in the 1900s like we did, research the finishes and decor of that era. And then implement those elements in a way that makes sense for your tastes!
When it came time to define the look of our cabin, I knew I wanted the space to have curated vintage vibes with a heavy Pacific Northwest influence. To me, that means a variety of plaids, curated gallery walls of landscape artwork, touches of midcentury modern furniture, and layers of eclectic textiles.
Consider your transitions
Something that’s always driven me crazy about our cabin is that the flooring is different in EVERY SINGLE ROOM. We have laminate in the open concept living and dining rooms, parquet in the gear room, raw wood boards in my office, tile… and we had carpet. It’s a LOT of different materials and none of it feels cohesive. To remedy this issue, I plan to eventually use the same flooring or narrow it down to two flooring types in the entire house.
Flooring is just one way to create a consistent, cohesive design look. Focus on establishing your primary design elements and then making sure they are consistent across the entire home.
So what do you think these tips about how to create a cohesive decor aesthetic in your home?? I hope you find them helpful. And if you have any additional questions, leave a comment and I’ll do my best to help!
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