Decorating a home is a big task, often done over years, so it is natural that not all parts of the tasks are going to be done in the same way. On top of that, we, as humans, have a very hard time deciding what we like, and it is the most natural thing to like multiple styles. But deciding to put only one style throughout our entire home is a difficult thing and can really rob a home from its charm and quirks. But combining different styles can seem chaotic, unnatural and very messy if done incorrectly. Luckily there is a way to make it all work, and all it requires is thinking about these few things:
Go room by room
A great way to incorporate multiple styles into your home is to do one room in each style. This is also great because it allows everyone living in the house to decorate their room or their part of the house in their own style. This way you can have a nautical bathroom, a vintage shabby chic kitchen and an industrial living room. But there has to be a point that connects the two. Hallways are a great place to do this: decorate a hallway with similar accessories from both styles and ease the transition. If there isn’t a hallway between the two rooms, just use the doors. Hanging up a small ornate anchor on the bathroom door, or a vintage plate on a bedroom door can be like an invitation into the next style and prepares the person for what is waiting on the other side.
Find an overlapping point
If you want to mix two or more styles in the same room, then you have to do a little bit more planning. The best way to incorporate two different styles is find common ground and work around that. It can be a similar material, shape or even similar size of furniture. If there is really nothing you can find that fits both styles then try to at least use the same color. Having a white vintage bird cage decoration next to a modern white armchair will look a lot better than if one of the items was red. You can also try pairing things that have complementary functions: a classic period chair next to a vintage coffee table, or a set of crisp, modern tall glasses with your grandmother’s old pitcher. The most important thing about mixing styles is that things should complement each other, not clash.
Balance the space
Imagine walking into a room that has an entire sitting area done in a vintage style on the left side of the room, while the entire right side is in a Parisian chic style. It wouldn’t make much sense, since there is nothing connecting the two parts of the space. But, if the vintage sitting area has Parisian style cushions, then the whole room becomes more cohesive. If you want to make a blend of minimalism and medieval, just having one shelf full of plate armor in a corner won’t do the trick. Instead, try to keep everything minimal and make all of the decorations in a medieval style. Or take a very professionally equipped room and place foam filled bean bags in two different corners. If you are putting multiple styles into a single room, then try to stick to just two styles. Any more than that would just clash and look messy, because there is no space to properly display all of the styles.
But you can also use disbalance to your advantage: imagine a cute, girly vintage room with a large polka style painting in the middle of the wall. It would definitely draw the eye and make the painting a centerpiece.
Most homes combine several styles and, especially if there are a lot of people living in there, that is exactly what it should be. Everyone should get a chance to display the different sides of their personality and their likings, it’s just a matter of making it all fit with one another. Have fun with it and remember that whatever you do is good, as long as you are happy with it.