What to do when your styles differ…

I’m forever collecting images and making plans for every corner of our home, quite often I will wake up with an idea and want to get going that very day. I usually try to run my ideas past my husband (it is OUR house after all), but I have been known to get painting when he’s gone out for the day! Sorry hubs!

I’m lucky that most of the time he likes what I suggest/do (phew!) but every now and then, he’ll turn his nose up…Most of the time he can be persuaded, but occasionally he has been known to get his way and I have had to learn the art of compromise. There was the sanded wood floor vs carpet debate for our living room. And then the Smeg versus the much more reasonable but far more boring (in my opinion) built in fridge. Try as I might, I couldn’t persuade him on either of those, but two loses in a house full of wins isn’t too bad I guess.

But what do you do if your styles differ so much that these kind of disagreements are a regular occurrence? One of my lovely readers has found herself in this situation and has asked for my help. So I have been racking my brain to come up with a few tips to help her and anyone else that can relate!

1. Try to find a common ground between your styles. If he loves the coastal look and you want Parisian chic – then focus on what they have in common – the colour palette. Add subtle hints of both, but don’t go too overboard one way or the other.

Image via Pinterest

2. The colour debate – one of you loves bright, bold colours, the other wants neutral muted tones. I think in this instance it’s best to work with a neutral base and add pops of bold colour through accessories. You can always add to it over time in the hope that your partner doesn’t notice :)

Image via Pinterest

3. Something that can be quite common is when one of you prefers functionality or comfort over aesthetics. Yes you absolutely should be buying a comfy sofa, but that doesn’t mean you can’t keep searching for one that is both comfy and attractive.

4. Clutter versus clean. If one of you loves clean lines and sleek surfaces, and the other wants knick-knacks galore it can be tricky to find a balance. If you find this is the case in your house then I recommend keeping the overall look clean with simple furniture and white walls but add shelving solutions to display ornaments – and display them in a neat, coherent way.

Image via Pinterest

5. One time I think you have to give in is when it comes to your partner wanting to display personal and meaningful objects – even if you feel that they don’t go with your scheme. Find out why it is so important to them and try to focus on that, rather than the fact you have an ornament of a cast iron dog in your living room! (My husband has had it since he was 5 – it reminds him of the dog he had as a child so who am I to say that it doesn’t go!)

If none of these tips are working for you, I have one last suggestion, which is actually my secret to getting my way 99% of the time…!

Give your partner the spare room and let them go wild! HA! I have a full on man cave in my house – complete with pool table, dart board and football memorabilia galore!! It’s certainly not what I’d do with the room – the edwardian fireplace does look a little out of place – but it’s a good compromise for us. Chris gets to do whatever he wants with that room, while I have the rest of the house :)  And I have to admit, it is kinda fun having a pool table!

Have any of you experienced this, how have you worked around it? Which of you usually wins the house battles?


4 thoughts on “What to do when your styles differ…

  1. Great tips Kate. My poor hubby doesn’t get much say at all. He has come home numerous times to find rooms have changed colour!!! My tips are:

    1. Before committing to something it’s worth testing it out for a while. Use the whole tester pot of paint to cover a long strip of lining paper or two instead of just a small square in the corner so you both get an idea of what it will actually look like. You never know hubby may be won over!

    2. Get inspiration! Use Instagram to see what other people have done in their home. Pinterest is great for looking up styles and making boards and it might give an idea of how mixing two different styles together could work. I live in a Victorian terrace and love mid-century inspired styles but if I went all out 50’s it would look a bit too much against the original features so I have papered the chimney breast using Sanderson’s Dandelion and picked out the turquoise and mustard from the paper in cushions and throws. For the personal touches of photos I have picked pictures of my grandparents from the 60’s and I love how this adds a vintage touch.

    4. Figure what is most important to each of you in the room and how the room is going to be used. Do you really need a party pad if you know you are only going to entertain a few times a year? You can always dress a room up for special occasion, or if you just fancy a change, using accessories. Kate, you are obviously the Queen of dressing a room! Or if a dining room is not used very often would a bold statement would better in this room then a living room where a more relaxed look might work better?

    Failing all of this just chuck both peoples stuff in the room and say you have gone for the eclectic look ha ha


    1. Thank you so much for taking the time to share your tips Claire – they’re brilliant! Number 4 is just so important!! As is decorating your house in keeping with the era. Really great tips lovely, thank you so much! xxx


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