I have to be honest. My interior design taste was not always so curated. When I was in 5th grade, my mom let me design my bedroom, and it was not my best work. I spent weeks waffling between the "surf-chic" designs at Pottery Barn Teen (despite living in land-locked Indiana), and a preppy hot pink and green aesthetic.
When it finally came time to decide, I thought that the pink and green might have some more longevity. I painted my walls half pale pink, half bright yellow, and the bathroom was a lime green shade that was best for a more tropical locale.
By the end of high school, I was wishing for a more soothing color palette filled with my new favorite colors of blues and greens. By the time I was visiting home from college, I had re-painted the walls an inoffensive soft beige and replaced my paisley comforter with a vintage-inspired denim blue quilt.
But that's the nature of taste. As you grow and evolve as a person, your style moves in tandem. Though it's easy to laugh at old design choices, each one represented a little bit about who you were at the time. Below, here are 3 ways my own interior design style evolved with me.
I Embraced Mis-Matching
It's easy to fall into the trap of matching furniture. What could be more simple than a store basically outfitting your room for you? But mixing and matching furniture is an easy way to add some personality to your space and a sense of lightheartedness.
Though I used to long for the perfectly matching Pottery Barn sets as a child, I'm much more interested in the eclectic now. Instead of a living room set, I paired my gray sofa with a navy velvet armchair and repurposed two gold metal dining chairs as extra seating when friends visit. Instead of a bedroom set, I have a mid-century modern-inspired dresser from Target on one side of my bed, and on the other, I use a navy metal nightstand from CB2. Though it's nowhere near symmetrical, I like the look and most importantly, it's extremely functional.
I Began to Value Sentimentality
Once I grew more confident in my space (and probably myself), I wanted to add more touches that felt like home or felt like there was some kind of history behind them. I filled my home with framed photos of family and friends. I added vintage trays and only kept the books on my shelf that I actually wanted to re-read. I brought in art that I found in thrift shops and made sure to highlight any family heirlooms I had acquired, like a pie plate that belonged to my grandmother or a handwoven blanket. Though I was initially afraid that these little touches would feel cluttered, instead, they brought my home to life and made it a place that reflected my upbringing and family history.
I Went From Minimal to Curated
Possibly in response to my brightly colored room as a child, when I rented my first apartment, my style couldn't have been more minimal. I got textured all-white bedding, a light gray sofa, and a metal coffee table as I slowly outfitted my place.
After moving to a new city and starting my first real job, I wanted a place I could come home to and feel instantly at ease. I stuck to a mostly cool color palette with grays, blues, and the occasional soft pink and tan. I was living in a tiny studio apartment and never wanted to feel cluttered, so I kept my wall art minimal and stuck to only the basic furniture.
As I've moved into my second apartment, I'm no longer afraid of making my mark on my home, even though it's not much bigger than my first. There is artwork hanging on nearly every wall, and I've brought in more color, from deep hunter green accents to a vintage-inspired, deep blue and burgundy rug. The result is a home that feels curated, thoughtful, and most importantly, welcoming. It's a wonderful compliment when your friends can visit your home and immediately say "this looks like you."