Decorating in Your Signature Style

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Today is all about decorating in your personal style. 

I fine-tuned my signature style over the course of many years. I learned that decorating is all about editing – lots of it until you are left only with what you truly, truly love.

It doesn’t matter if no one else gets it – you only need to listen to your instincts and have confidence in your choices. It is like finding your happily ever after.

Once you have defined your decorating style, the best compliment anyone can give you is when they say…“that is so YOU!” 

My Signature Decorating Style

Signature Style Series blogger Diane Henkler In My Own Style
  • Baskets – I have been collecting all sizes of square and round baskets since I was in high school. I use them to organize little things in drawers and big things on the floor like throws, pillows, and pet toys. I recently even made an ice cooler out of one.
  • Lots of White – I have experimented with many paint colors, but know that I like my spaces light and bright so that whatever I bring into the room I never have to worry if it matches. Most of the walls in my home are white with the exception of my bedroom, foyer and dining room.  The foyer and dining room both will be sporting white walls soon, too.  I use white slipcovers in my family room, white dishes, serving ware, and sheets. If I am at a loss as to what color to paint an item – I know I will not go wrong with white.
  • Vintage – I like old pieces or items that bring back a fond memory.  I am not into collecting it, but if something makes me smile and I get that happy nostalgic feel – then I want to add it to the mix. A pink princess phone on my bedside table is a perfect example of this.
  • Flowers – Purple/Pink hydrangeas and pink peonies are my signature flowers. I wish I could have them in my home all year long, but I don’t have the budget for that. I search high and low for high quality fakes that I can place in vases and urns to enjoy the fresh happy color all year long.
  • Comfort First – If it is in my house and needs to be sat or laid upon – I make sure it is comfy before adding it to my decor.
  • Fresh Color – Even though I like lots of white, the only way white in my mind looks good is when it is paired with lots of colorful decorative accessories.
  • White Slipcovers – Some think these are a trend. I beg to differ. I will always want white slipcovers for my seating or at least one piece of it in a room. They add a casual, but put together look without being too traditional looking.  Plus, they are so easy to care for. When something spills – you simply throw them in the washer. When you place them back on slightly damp from the dryer – they end up wrinkle free when fully dried.
  • Stripped Furniture – This is something that is fairly new for my style. I have a lot of hand-me-down furniture. I used to paint all of it, since I was never a fan of stain – too brown. Two years ago I started seeing stripped and salvaged wood furniture without any stain at all at furniture showrooms. I loved the look and knew I could do the same on a few pieces I had. I will admit stripping furniture is a messy job, but has been well worth the time and effort. I like the look of it for the same reason I like white slipcovers. It makes traditional pieces more casual looking.  I like casual and do not have anything too formal in my house.
  • Pretty Storage – I don’t like to see lots of clutter. Having decorative ways to store items on shelves and in drawers adds order.
  • Painted Furniture – I started painting furniture when I was first married as a necessity to transform all the hand-me-downs I had been given.  Over the years I began to enjoy the process and loved the look of the brightly painted pieces amongst my other furnishings. They added visual interest to the room and became my statement pieces.
  • Unadorned Windows – I like to see outside and most of my windows have no curtains or draperies.  When I need privacy or to shield the sun, I simply add a white roller shade to the window.  In my dining room and guest room, I do have white drapery panels, but they are set off the windows so they are not blocking the view.
  • Seagrass Rugs – I love the neutral texture they add to a room and the feel of it on my bare feet. They also are easy to care for which I love since I don’t want anything in my home that requires too much upkeep.

I hope you enjoyed a round up of the items that make up my signature style.  I can’t say my style fits into any category… that is the best thing about decorating with personal style…when you put things you love together…they just do – go together… like it was meant to be.

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  1. Lisa Marie says:

    At the staging part of the house selling step. I’ve been told NOT to paint or do anything else but would still like to paint the third bedroom as it is currently a lilac, which I think is a big turn off. My front driveway gates could also use some spray paint as the previous owners used water-based paint on wrought iron – that’s a no go in Arizona! Now the rust is coming through. I never knew how much money went into trying to sell a house!

  2. Sheryll & Critters. says:

    I love your style and feel like everything you do is so inside me and it is my soul…… just that I never knew my style, till I found your blog.

  3. So glad for the day you decided to share your ideas with the rest of us! Like Beth commented, I was reading and shaking my head up and down throughout as well. I picked up several great ideas I am going to try now. I have many pieces of traditional furniture I want to paint or strip but have had too many well-meaning friends ask “are you crazy??” when I tell them what I wold like to do. I could just say “DITTO” to everything you wrote…lots of light, casual inviting rooms, unadorned windows, no clutter…. And best of all your comment that no space was going to be safe from editing while you purge, lit a fire in me to do the same. Thank you!

  4. Linda Weeks says:

    yep – your casa es mi casa – I don’t know how much I learned from your posts and how much I’ve been learning subconsciously as I read blogs all over the internet, but your taste is my taste! and your blog is my very favorite!
    thanks for all the help!

  5. I’m a lover of white and neutral backgrounds mixed with pops of color too! Love reading about your signature style and being in this fun series with you! I totally agree about comfort first as well! ~ Heather

  6. It’s really true, Diane, that your “signature style” is SO you! It seems that the one thing that is not “you” is the house itself- its very traditional and I picture you in an easy-going beach cottage. Do you agree? Maybe someday, right?

    1. Hi Bettsi – I am dreaming of that someday!!! :-) The house of my dreams sits on a cliff by itself and overlooks the Chesapeake Bay. It was in the movie Patriot Games with Harrison Ford. I fell in love with the house and location. I would have all the windows and doors wide open so the fresh air and bay air could blow through. I am keeping my fingers crossed for a house like this.

  7. Jackie Lee says:

    Your style is what I have been trying to implement in my own home! I could not put it into categories in order to have a complete game plan now I do! Thank you!!! I am now your #1 fan forever!!!

  8. Mary Ann Howat says:

    I am a new reader of your blog, and I really enjoy it. It’s so conversational and personal. I am learning a lot from your posts. I need a little more courage before I take up my paint brush and paint that vanity cabinet that looks so tired. Maybe next month I will be able to tackle this project. You are giving me courage!

    1. Hi Mary Ann – That is so nice to hear – thanks. If you want to get the courage up to paint your vanity cabinet, find a piece of scrap wood and experiment with the technique to improve your skills and confidence. Once you get the hang of it, then tackle your vanity. Once you start you will start to look at everything with new eyes and want to transform it all into your own vision.

      1. Mary Ann Howat says:

        Thanks Diane. We do have some scrap wood, and I will try the color out and glazing on the scrap piece. Why didn’t I think of that!

  9. Diane, I have always admired your style. You know just where to add the perfect amount of color! And you are so right – it doesn’t matter if everyone else hates your style – as long as you love it! That’s almost identical to what I just wrote in my post for tomorrow!

  10. love your use of color! so fresh and pretty! and i agree that the best compliment is when someone says “that is so you!” i love that. :)

    1. Hi Julia – Looking forward to yours tomorrow! Loving your posts from your trip, too. XO

  11. We have many similarities in our signature styles! You have a beautiful home and I’m so glad you share it with us.

  12. I love all the elements you brought together for this. They are definitely your style! Lots of white and brightly painted accents.

    Have fun nesting this fall – I’m doing the same myself. They we will be ready for the holiday season right?!

    1. Hi Jessica – I keep telling myself this – to get organized so that I can sit back and enjoy fall. I am hoping this year I can. XO

  13. This is fun blog theme! It helps me so much to read bloggers define their own style. I’m a late-comer to decorating and have to fight the urge to “include it all.” Mentally, I’ve finally gotten to the point where I can say I want to decorate in style x and use that to edit my choices. Great blogs like yours have helped me come a long way!

  14. I read through your lists just nodding my head! I love white slip covers and stripped furniture. It immediately makes the space more welcoming and comfortable!