When your decorating inspiration is an actual room, it’s fairly easy to pick out what you like and bring it into your space. But what if your inspiration is something more abstract and not a room at all?
The issue of how to translate abstract inspiration into an actual room design is something that I’ve received lots of emails about. So I thought it was time to discuss it in a blog post. I’m a true believer that inspiration can come from anywhere. You just need to open your eyes and your mind to see it. You never know what it is that you’re going to find that will inspire you. But if you find something, what do you do with it? How do you use it to turn your space into a beautifully designed room?
As I mentioned above, if it’s a room you found on Pinterest or Instagram that is just your style, it’s going to be much clearer for you to bring that to your home. Sometimes, though, you may be inspired by something such the feeling you get when you look at a sunset on the beach, the way the colors in a print ad draw you in, or how a store window in a hotel in Las Vegas catches your eye. (If that last one seems out of left field, it’s really not. In fact, it’s the inspiration I am using for this post.) These things are what I refer to as abstract inspiration. Today, I’m sharing my process for how I turned something like a window display into a design for a living room. To do that, I’m going to walk you through step-by-step to explain why I chose each piece for the room.
My Decorating Inspiration
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For this post, I’m using this storefront window display I saw at the Bellagio hotel in Las Vegas as inspiration and designing a living room around it. (Fun fact about this display: The man, bistro set, and signs in the front were all separate pieces and created a three dimensional effect. The shoes, cup, and bag are real, which added to the effect.)
This display has a cool and casual yet sophisticated, contemporary vibe to it. I like the contrast of black and white with slight pops of color. I can already see where this room is headed.
My Vision Board
Since I don’t have an actual living room for which I’m designing, I’m only including some basic pieces to help illustrate my process. Here is the vision board I created for the room inspired by the window display.
How I Translated My Decorating Inspiration
Here’s how the inspiration and vision board look side by side.
Below I’ve broken down my inspiration into individual elements, so that you can see why I made the choices I did for this room.
The End Table
The Ottoman and Mirror
The Lamp and Pillows
The Blue Agate Bookends and Throw
Every decorator, professional or not, has their own process for translating their decorating inspiration. I hope breaking things down for you and letting you in on my thought process helps you when it comes to decorating your home. It doesn’t have to be a literal translation; do what feels right for you.
Inspiration is all around you. Keep your eyes and mind open. And remember, it doesn’t always have to be a room. Be aware of what catches your attention and resonates with you. Realizing what you respond to with positive feelings is key to understanding your design style and creating a home you love.
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