A Marriage of Styles: Tips for Couples Designing a Home

couple moving to a new home

Decorating a home is no easy job. Decorating with a spouse is far tougher though. More often than not, couples tend to clash when it comes to aesthetic tastes. One loves neutrals; the other likes bold hues.

What’s worse in this situation is that as you try to resolve the clash, you feel the pressure of getting the decorating done fast so you can already enjoy the space. While there’s an art to decorating a home, there’s also an art to designing with your spouse. Here’s how you can pull that off.

Find common ground

Before you decide which art pieces to hang or what theme you should have on the nursery room, focus first on the similarities in your aesthetic preferences. You can do this by creating individual lists of what you want to see in your home.

At a minimum, you should be able to zero in on the overall feel or atmosphere you prefer. Do you want the home to be warm and cozy? Or do you like it formal and sophisticated? Or perhaps quirky and wild? If you can’t describe it in words or you feel like they won’t suffice, illustrate it in pictures. Collect and print images from the internet or design magazines and put them together on a mood board.

From your list and board, flesh out what’s similar, take note of them and reflect them in your design. If you really can’t find common ground on the overall vibe of the home, then go for the middle ground, the compromise. Let one’s design preferences take over. Yield to the other.

Mix your styles

modern stylish kitchen with island

Another approach to your aesthetic differences, aside from compromise, is to merge your inclinations. For instance, you can mix your preferred neutral color scheme with your spouse’s rustic elements. You can also pair your obsession over maximalist gallery walls with your partner’s love for a gas fireplace in your Salt Lake City home.

The good thing about mixes in this manner is that they create a unique interior design style. It then avoids being the exact duplicate of model homes or Pinterest images. Your space becomes a reflection of you and your partner’s unique personalities.

Of course, the only risk in these mixes is when elements don’t match. It’s still important to exercise caution in merging styles. Remember that you can’t just introduce any detail into the room. You should be able to take note of the basic principles of design, like contrast, rhythm, harmony and texture.

Dedicate spaces for ‘his’ and ‘hers’

Although your home belongs to you both, there are specific spaces in your home that you can claim as “yours.” For instance, the kitchen may be your wife’s. The basement or the garage may be the man cave, and therefore your husband’s.

In such spaces, let your spouse take the reins in designing. Leave them be if they want to have a large living wall near your kitchen cupboards or all-leather furniture pieces in the garage. As long as you agree on the overall feel and put touches of that in the space, the home is tied together in unity.

It’s tough to pull off a home design project, especially when you’re doing it with a spouse who has a different aesthetic taste from you. It’s possible though to accomplish this. You just have to master the art of communication.

The Author

Scroll to Top