Discovering Your Design Style

Finding the Perfect Balance Between Function and Aesthetic

As an interior designer, Media local Lauren Mink, owner of Providence Home & Design wants you to know one thing– Your home is your sanctuary, a reflection of your personality, and a place where you find comfort and solace. Choosing the right interior design style is crucial to creating spaces that not only look beautiful, but also serve your practical needs. 

While there are numerous design styles to explore, from traditional to modern, coastal to rustic, discovering your unique style can be an exciting journey– one Lauren takes her clients on each and every day.  In fact, over making beautiful spaces alone, Lauren is most committed to helping her clients on the journey of discovering what they love, even if they don’t know what that is yet! “It's a great thing to be able to help people live in a place that they are happy about and proud of and feel comfortable in,” she told us in a recent interview. Her best advice for those wanting to refresh their home? Start with function over style. “I would say think about, first and foremost, function… If you see a room in a magazine that you think looks really beautiful and you want your house to look like that, great! But make sure that room is going to function the way you need it to.”

By prioritizing function over style, you can create a home filled with spaces that you genuinely love and enjoy. Once you’ve determined how a space in your home needs to function to serve your and your family’s practical needs, then think about aesthetics. Lauren gives each of her clients a custom quiz to help them determine what they like and what they don’t. But you can start with these popular interior design styles she sees most often. 

Traditional Elegance

If you find charm in timeless appeal and appreciate classic elements, the traditional design style may be your perfect match. Characterized by ornate details, rich colors, and antique furnishings, this style exudes sophistication and refinement. Look for furniture with intricate carvings, plush upholstery, and elegant draperies. Warm, inviting, and often formal, traditional spaces create an ambiance of luxury and comfort.

Transitional Harmony

For those who love the best of both worlds, the transitional style combines elements of traditional and modern design. Emphasizing clean lines, neutral color palettes, and a mix of textures, this style offers a harmonious balance between classic and contemporary. Choose furniture with simple silhouettes and incorporate subtle pops of color and pattern to achieve a seamless blend of old and new

Modern Simplicity

Sleek, clean, and uncluttered – the modern design style is defined by a focus on functionality and open spaces. Modern interiors embrace the beauty of simplicity. Opt for furniture with clean lines, neutral colors, and a lack of ornate detailing. Use minimalist decor to accentuate the space without overwhelming it, creating an atmosphere of sleek sophistication.

Minimalist Zen

If you believe in the mantra "less is more," the minimalist style might resonate with you. Striving for simplicity and decluttered spaces, minimalism embraces neutral color schemes, open floor plans, and multifunctional furniture pieces. Embrace natural light, incorporate storage solutions, and remove unnecessary items to achieve a calming and serene environment.

Maximalist Eclecticism

For the adventurous souls who love bold statements and vibrant colors, the maximalist style offers a playful and eclectic approach to design. Layer patterns, mix and match colors, and display an array of decorative items to express your personality. While maximalist spaces are vibrant and energetic, be mindful of creating visual balance and harmony to avoid overwhelming the senses.

Coastal Serenity

If you find peace and tranquility by the sea, the coastal design style may resonate with you. Emphasizing a light and airy atmosphere, this style incorporates soft colors inspired by the ocean and beach. Furniture with natural textures like rattan or wicker complements the coastal theme. Add nautical decor elements like seashells, driftwood, and ocean-inspired artwork to evoke the feeling of a beachside retreat.

Rustic Warmth

For those who love the charm of countryside living and appreciate natural elements, the rustic design style is a great choice. Warm and welcoming, this style incorporates wood, stone, and other natural materials to create a cozy and inviting ambiance. Look for vintage or distressed furniture, warm color palettes, and embrace imperfections to highlight the beauty of rustic living.

Prioritize Function Over Style

While exploring different design styles can be fun and inspiring, Lauren reminds her clients that it's essential to prioritize function over aesthetics when creating your dream home. Consider your lifestyle, daily routines, and the specific needs of your family. Think about how each space will be used and what elements are essential for its functionality. For example, if you have young children or pets, choose durable and easy-to-clean materials for furniture and flooring. For those who love to cook, invest in a well-designed kitchen with ample storage and efficient workspaces. Emphasize comfort and practicality in living areas and bedrooms to ensure a relaxing and restful environment.

Finding Your Perfect Balance: Style & Function

Your interior design style should be a reflection of your personality and lifestyle. It's entirely possible to have a home that is both functional and visually appealing with spaces that bring you joy and comfort while also serving their intended purpose. To discover your ideal design style, start by gathering inspiration from various sources like magazines, social media, and interior design blogs. Consider creating a mood board or Pinterest board to collect images that you love. Look for common themes and elements that appeal to your taste. Lauren reminds her clients to feel free to mix and match elements from different styles to create a unique and personalized look. Your home should be a reflection of your individuality, so embrace your creativity and trust your instincts! Then, identify the function of your space.  Do you entertain a lot? Do you have children or pets? Do you need additional seating areas? Consider how you will use the space and what elements might be necessary to make it a practical fit for those needs. 

Finally, Lauren recommends considering your budget. Know what you can reasonably spend and make your plan realistic. Consider investing in larger items and adding smaller items over time, or, explore purchasing second-hand pieces. And, of course, don’t forget to consider what you already have that might be able to be reincorporated into a new look. Whether you're drawn to the elegance of traditional decor, the simplicity of modern spaces, or the eclectic charm of maximalism, remember that your home is your canvas to create a space you truly love and enjoy. Happy decorating!

While there are numerous design styles to explore, from traditional to modern, coastal to rustic, discovering your unique style can be an exciting journey.

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