02 March 2012


 style [stahyl]
1. a particular kind, sort, or type, as with reference to form, appearance, or character
2. a mode of fashion, as in dress

As I thumb through design magazines, read blogs, or watch programs on HGTV, I find myself wondering: What's my style?  Not only in clothes but in my home? And are they one in the same?  Can someone look at me and tell how my house will look?  (Considering how I looked last Friday, I certainly hope not.... that was an unfortunate day, sartorially speaking.)

But I digress.... 

How to determine one’s style?

I tend to gravitate towards a variety of styles when it comes to my house: shabby chic; farmhouse; retro; traditional; Edwardian. Indeed, as I wander through my cottage I see that I have different styles in different rooms not only because I feel strongly that you should let the inherent bones and architectural ethos of a room tell you how it wants to be decorated but also because I tend to associate certain styles with a particular room's use. As a result I have a retro 1930s bathroom (true to the house’s pedigree); a kitchen that has a lot of “farmhouse” about it; a bedroom that is unashamedly feminine; an upstairs den that is part Casbah and part 19th c. library; a parlor that has a men’s club feel to it; a traditional dining room with lots of Asian porcelain (and a little garden statuary!); and a back porch that has shabby Beach House written all over it.   

And it's the same when it comes to what I like to wear:  a little Merchant-Ivory, a little Out of Africa, a little farm girl & country bumpkin, and lots of my father's old shirts!

Family members bandy around words like eclectic and bohemian but is it really that simple? Perhaps the one thing my clothes and cottage have in common—although an important thing, to be sure—is that they all seem to point back to a time other than the present. What that style is called I'm not sure. And I'm also not sure if it matters.

What is your style?  Is it fluid?  Rigid?   Does it inform your clothing as well as your home? And are they one and the same? If someone saw you on the street, could they imagine the interior of your home? And would they be right? 

Over and out.


  1. Mine is bordering on eclectic, I think. It definitely has a cozy country feel but I'm not necessarily wedded to one style. I ten to throw things together and make them work. (Secretly? I think that makes a house more interesting!)


  2. I'm with Claudia. I think a mix of styles is more interesting, and my house is similar to yours. I like too many different things, and would never try to integrate everything into one style just for its own sake. My style evolves all the time.

  3. I agree that a house is more interesting when it's a blend of different styles and moods; and that as we evolve, our interiors can't help evolving as well. I wonder what "style blending" (eclecticity?) says about us as a culture, and is it a relatively new phenomenon? Perhaps it's simply the hallmark of a "collector"!