Hi, I'm Shirley

Welcome to my blog on apartment living.  You can also visit my food blog where I share Recipes, stuff on Food Talk and Cooks' Resource. 

7 Steps To Create A Trendy Decor: NOT!

Someone once asked me what was trending in throw pillows.  It was a really tough question for me to answer because I think in terms of style:  modern, traditional, oriental, eclectic , Nordic and other styles defined by certain elements.  I think in terms of design principles but love the idea of departing from those principles to capture a certain mood, an ambiance, an expression of who you are.

Please don't misunderstand me, I'm not saying that their is something wrong with being "trendy."  But in an age when there are so many choices, why short circuit your brain and "your style" to just being "trendy." 

 Trendy and now overly used

Trendy and now overly used

For example, for a while the chevron pattern has been all the rave, particularly the wide, two-color pattern.  And it still is but almost to the point of being prosaic.  The pattern is an ancient one and frankly deserves better homage. 

Fortunately, there are designers who explore the complexity of the pattern and have given us not only more choices but choices that allow us to best express ourselves.  Even the most transparent person has elements of complexity.

You could say the chevron patterns below are trendy.  But I would say they offer enough complexity to not be trendy but are sophisticated and classic.

 From left to right: classic chevron by Kravet; Kasari ikat terra cotta by Schumacher; dulcina meadow by Fabricut; Tangier frame print driftwood by Schumacher; and Spa by Greenhouse

From left to right: classic chevron by Kravet; Kasari ikat terra cotta by Schumacher; dulcina meadow by Fabricut; Tangier frame print driftwood by Schumacher; and Spa by Greenhouse

So what's trendy now in interior design?  Oh dear, I may be getting into trouble here but I would say those over-sized chandeliers.  If you love them, I'm so happy for you and hope you will not scream at me.  But I just can't help it.  They always make me think of Alice In Wonderland, the Mad Hatter, the king has no clothes  but never do I think "Oh, how gorgeous!"  How long this trend will last will pronounce me a taste-less-master, old fashion or sagacious.

By now you may be asking how do you create a home and not be trendy?  How do you create spaces that are dated before you've even finished paying for it.  If your song is "I'm in with the in crowd, and I go where the in crowd goes," well, the list below is probably not for you.  But if your song is "I've got to be me," think about the suggestions below.  Whether you are redecorating, replacing old pieces or just accessorizing, this is your starting point:

  1. Look around your home and find the things you really, really love and have loved over a long period of time.  If possible, gather them in one room.
  2. Identify what style you think these items represent, such as eclectic, traditional or modern.
  3. Having identified your collected decor style, the question is do you want to continue with it or would you like to change it.  Not worry.  If your design taste changes, you can still find space for those items that do not fit by grouping them as a collection in a strategic spot.  If it's furniture, space them out as focal pieces.  This very much depends upon size and number of items.
  4. If you live alone, discuss with a friend your life style.  If not, then discuss this with your spouse, roommate or partner.  Talking about it, gets it out in the open where you can really examine your life style. 
  5. Spend a good deal of time looking through inspirational home decorated rooms--both trendy and traditional.  
  6. If the trendy really captures your taste and life style, opt for the more complex designs.  Notice, a complex design can also be understated, simple--sublime.  Think of an orchid.  It is beautiful, complex and simple--and sublime.
  7. Here's the most critical and probably the most time consuming part:  identify excellent resources from furniture stores (new or antique or garage sales) to fabric stores to home decor stores.  Shop around is the old adage.  Start with the most expensive places to buy.  Can't afford it?  That's okay.  Work your way down to other places where you can find substitutions for the pieces you want and will fit your budget.  In your haunts, include such places as auctions, flea markets and Craigslist.  They offer great surprises and bargains for that special piece.  You'll have a fun story to tell over cheese and wine or a

Notice in steps 1 through 6, you had yet to spend or waste one penny!  Being trendy saves you time by not having to think, just buy, add it to your decor and a year later tire of it.  The art of home is not about just saving time or for that matter being trendy, but about creating something beautiful that stands up to time and that you, your family and friends can enjoy for years to come.

Is being trendy the way to go?  Am I just not appreciating being trendy?  Oh please, do tell!


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