The Stylish Girl's Guide to Decorating Using Target Pieces

Oh, Target, how we love thee. Whether it's your new spring 2017 collection or covetable Nate Berkus line, we can't help but fill up our carts (both virtual and #IRL) with your stylish yet affordable pieces. And what better time to shop these than at the top of a new season? But the big question is how. While we certainly know what pieces we like, sometimes we're not sure how to style them with our existing décor when we get home. So to find the answer, we tapped Target Home Style Expert Emily Henderson of Styled by Emily Henderson to give us a few tips. 

"First and foremost, you need to determine how you want the room to feel," she told MyDomaine. "Functionality can happen once you start picking out furniture and larger pieces for the room. Do you want it to be cozy and relaxed? Family-friendly for the kiddos? More formal for guests or a place to be productive in? Once you determine how you want the room to feel and, more importantly, how you want to feel in the room, you can begin designing." Are you ready to get started? Ahead, Henderson shows us how along with the biggest mistake most people make when decorating. 

Courtesy of Target

MYDOMAINE: What's your personal decorating philosophy?

EMILY HENDERSON: Perfection is boring; let's get weird. Now, I know that isn't exactly a philosophy, but designing a room is all about finding the juxtaposition between expected and unexpected and working with your client to find out what works and doesn't work for them to further bring that out in their space.

MD: What are the top three qualities every room should have?

EH: I always say that every room should be happy, personal, layered, and include something vintage. I guess that is four, but they are all just as important as the next.

MD: How important is space? How does it impact the look and feel?

EH: Just as skinny jeans or oversize blousy tops don't work for everyone, same goes for petite furnishings or oversize pieces. Consider the size of your space when you are purchasing, and remember that the negative space is just as important as what is in it. Leaving enough room around furnishings will give your eye the visual space that it needs when you walk into a room.

Courtesy of Target

MD: What are your favorite ways to add texture to a room?

EH: Layering rugs of different sizes and colors is a way to add instant texture and visual interest to a room. I know most people think of rugs as an investment, but they don't have to be. Target has a collection of global-inspired rugs that feel fresh for spring, make a statement, and are relatively affordable.

If you don't have the space, or the thought of mixing rugs intimidates you, then try the same concept with Target's new pillow collections. Remember to differ pattern and scale while keeping it tonal so it doesn't get too busy.

MD: What are your favorite colors to work with?

EH: Since spring is all about bringing the outdoors in, right now I like working green accents throughout a space. A few of my favorites include this green planter, this banana leaf throw pillow, and this watercolor palm leaf print.

I will always be a fan of blue as well. Right now I'm loving this earthenware vase and tasseled pillow from Target's spring collection.

Courtesy of Target

MD: What is a next big trend you're inspired by and see others bringing home? 

EH: I have loved midcentury home design for as long as I can remember, but lately I've found myself drawn to pieces with more of a modern influence, too. I can't foresee myself ever going full-fledged modern in my own home because it's just not my aesthetic, but I love a little touch here and there.

MD: What are your favorite Target pieces to work with and why?

EH: Target is the place to go when you are sourcing lamps, vases, and pillows, and there are so many strong pieces in the spring collection. I currently have this green vase and this lidded vase in my own house. They add just the right punch of color for spring and look so striking with a blush-colored spring arrangement.

Tassels are having a moment, and Target did not miss the memo with this woven lumbar and cream diamond pillow. I also routinely style Target lounge chairs in my living room. I'm currently loving this chair. I don't have it yet, but I'm thinking about a corner where it could work. 

Courtesy of Target

MD: How can we minimize clutter to achieve that minimal look?

EH: A quick and easy way to help corral clutter and items while keeping things from looking messy is through trays and decorative boxes. This wicker tray with handles could go on your coffee table, desk or entry console to help keep things organized and keep clutter to a minimum.

MD: Many of our readers are big Target fans. What tips do you have for styling Target pieces at home?

EH: As a stylist, I love making updates to my home with the coming of each season to help keep it fresh and up to date (and knowing we're constantly shooting there). It's obviously not realistic for everyone to change their home every few months, which is why I love Target. It offers affordable, on-trend pieces year-round that seem to get better and better. It recently started shooting home catalogs, which are extremely good style inspiration and that I just covered over on the blog, here. The lifestyle shots showcase great ways to get inspired and see how you can incorporate the current pieces in your own home.

Courtesy of Target

MD: What's a mistake you see often or have done yourself that we can/should avoid? why?

EH: We are actually writing a post on it right now, but one of the biggest things people run into when decorating is moving forward with purchases without actually having a plan. They get so excited about a project that they buy before even knowing where the piece will go. Trust me, I have done this plenty myself, which is why I am learning firsthand how helpful it can be to map things out in your mind before you head out to purchase larger pieces. Measure the space out and decide how big things are and your general layout before making any large purchases.

MD: Small spaces are on the rise with more people decorating with less space. What are your tips for styling a size-challenged room?

EH: Multifunctional furniture and accessories are key to decorating small spaces. I like this wood slat bench with gold legs—it could easily double as a coffee table. And with small spaces, it is important to remember that things need to have a purpose in the room for them to be there. Sure, you can have some beautiful items displayed around the room, but a room full of beautiful accessories will quickly crowd a small space that needs more purposeful items.

Courtesy of Target

MD: What are your favorite paint colors?

EH: These are my 10 go-to paint colors that I seem to use over and over, but recently I have loved mixing in some more daring colors into my own décor. I used green smoke in my kitchen and sharkskin in our laundry room. It is so nice having a splash of color among the white.

MD: What should we never do when decorating?

EH: Take things too seriously. It is just décor, and you should have fun with it. If you make a mistake, you can most likely return it and find something that is better suited for the room. Live in the space and experience, and let yourself make changes to the room as it evolves with you and the way you use it.

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