Whether you are designing your own home or starting to establish yourself as an interior designer, knowing your design style will help you narrow your home decor selections and speed up the decision-making process.
Our five-step guide to defining your design style:
Understanding and identifying your design style is the first step to clearly articulating your taste to someone else. Whether you are designing your own home or starting to establish yourself as an interior designer, knowing your design style will help you narrow your home decor selections and speed up the decision-making process. For anyone who wants to design for clients, understanding who you are as a designer and what type of styles you like is important because it will allow them to know what to expect when working with you—and it might even become a selling point as to why they want to work with you.
If you're interested in learning how to define your design style, keep reading for our handy five-step guide.
Consider this your design research phase. During this first step, you'll want to do as much internet searching, Thingology feed scrolling, and Pinterest and Instagram saving as possible! You can save as many images as you'd like, but try to narrow them down to your favorite five at that end so you have a nice number of photos to compare.
When looking at these images, you want to describe what you see or feel. Descriptor words can be anything from traditional to minimal, warm to colorful, etc. Your main goal here is to describe the image's aesthetic in your own words. Try not to overthink this step; just let those creative juices flow!
Pro-Tip: If you're having difficulty defining design styles, try taking our free design style course to familiarize yourself with common styles.
What words are you seeing repeated from step two? Make a note of all of those. What are the similarities between the images you sourced? Are you seeing similar, bright colors? Maybe you are attracted to curvy shapes? You should see at least a few commonalities.
Mood boarding is one of our favorite parts of a design project. If you aren't familiar with mood boarding, it's a visual representation that will help you articulate the ideal vision for your project (or in this case: your style). In this step, you'll want to capture the essence of what you jotted down in step three into a mood board. We recommend including some of the interior images you selected; you can also add "mood imagery" (which can help you portray a literal mood) and some color/tonal photos that emphasize the aesthetic patterns you noticed in the earlier steps.
After putting everything together, you should have a general understanding of your design style! However, if you need a little extra mood board inspiration, we recommend reading this interview with five designers about why they love mood boarding.
Voila! Just like that, you have a new mood board to showcase in your portfolio. Show the world your unique point of view and who you are as a designer! Remember that your design style will likely change over time, and that's okay. We like to make mood boards every season when our style might change (or whenever we need a boost of inspiration). The good news is there is no set rule for defining your style, and although we find our five-step guide helpful, do what feels best for you.
Photo Credit: (Left + Top Right) Design Files
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