It’s fun to begin to pinpoint your personal interior design style and design a home around that style. But very few people are drawn to one pure style. Rather, most people end up with personal design styles that are a mix of a few different styles. And many people’s preferences evolve over time as well. This means designing a space that incorporates multiple styles and mixes them together.
And if you live with a partner or roommates, you’re not just designing a space with your own preferred mix of styles, but you have to keep theirs in mind, too. And that also means mixing together even more style points-of-view on the overall design of your home.
If you’re feeling stuck or overwhelmed with how to combine styles in a shared space or just how to mix your own preferences together into one cohesive look, take a deep breath and keep reading. We’ve chatted with a few of our Modsy designers—who are experts in combining multiple interior design styles into one space. Today, they’re sharing some essential shared space design tips for mixing decor styles within a home!
Read on for some of our designers’ tips on how to mix styles!
1. Pinpoint Your Personal Style
You can’t start designing a space until you’ve pinpointed your personal style. Not sure where to begin? Browse some interior design ideas to pull inspiration for what style features, furniture, color palettes, and layouts you like. And don’t forget to take our style quiz to help you further drill down on your preferred design styles! Learning to name the styles you’re drawn toward will make it easier to figure out ways to merge those styles.
Once you’ve identified your preferred style (and everyone you live with, if you’re designing a shared space), you can start working toward combining elements from your ideal design styles for a cohesive home that represents everyone in the home and uniquely brings to life your shared style.
Bonus Listening: Check out episode 1 of Modsy’s podcast, The Render, to discover your personal interior design style and learn what it says about you!
2. Make Function a Top Priority
Instead of immediately getting caught up in how to mix and match the detailed elements of your design styles, start by taking a step back. When designing a room, the layout and function of the space should be established first. So, landing on the layout and the way you want to use the space will give you a solid foundation from which to build the design. This can also help you narrow in on style options for your space.
So, think about if you prefer a more formal or casual layout and how you want the space to function. Do you prefer the formality of symmetry or a more laid-back vibe? Or maybe you want something in the middle? It all depends on how you want to use the space and how you want to feel within the space. Let the function help guide your choices.
3. Find Common Ground
Even if the styles you’re drawn to seem like they’re on opposite ends of the style spectrum—like glam and industrial or traditional and modern—you can almost always find a little bit of common ground. Take glam and industrial styles for example. At a glance, you’d think they have nothing in common. But look a little closer, and you’ll notice that both of these styles celebrate the use of the material as an ornament. While glam spaces tend to have more polished, sophisticated finishes and industrial design celebrates raw, rugged materials, you can find some common ground through glam materials in a more raw finish, like a marble side table. The same goes for mixing modern and traditional furniture. While these styles have very different sensibilities, both prioritize comfort in their foundational furniture. That commonality can help guide design choices in your space.
In this, keep things cohesive by not swinging too far on either side of the design spectrum. Instead, stay more “middle of the road” with design elements from each style.
4. Choose Furniture That Brings in Elements of Each Style
The furniture you choose is a great way to bring the many elements of your design style together. Use furniture shapes, materials, and finishes as a way to speak to each style. In the design above, the coffee table has traditional spindle legs, but the finish is more rustic. The accent chair has more modern lines, but the aged leather leans traditional. And having the fireplace and mantel as a focal point in the room is a very traditional move—but painting it all white is a very modern, minimalist approach. These are just small examples of how to bring in elements of multiple design styles into single pieces, which begins to impact the overall look of the space.
Another great tip to keep in mind? Many Transitional-style pieces are naturally “middle-of-the-road,” stylistically. So, Transitional furniture can provide a simple, almost neutral foundation if you’re struggling to mix your two styles.
5. Add Personal Touches
When you add decorative objects to a room, you have the opportunity to bring your own personal touch to the space, giving it a unique flair that helps drive home your personal style. This is a great way to bridge the multiple styles you’re mixing within a room. These personal touches could be objects from your travels, things you picked up during special events and mementos that are meaningful—like framed photos of your family or pets. Adding personal items helps a space feel more personalized and comforting, and in a shared space, it adds that extra element of building a space together.
Need a little extra help? Online interior design is a great way for partners to begin mixing design styles. Our designers are pros at combining design styles and can help you mix multiple styles into your home. And, with Modsy’s life-like 3D designs, you can try out different furniture and decor and confidently land on a design you love.