In today's post, you'll read about a special person and see the images of a room I decorated for her and her mother. You'll also get a few design maxims that I applied to this space. They are guidelines that I borrowed from my closet and maybe you can use them in your own house.
So there is this young woman. She is a kind of wild thing. A bohemian. She is also a very good, kind, down-to-earth person. I met her through my son and we became friends. Somehow I can be my weird self around her and she is much less turned off than many women my own age.
Anyway, my young friend left for college and I missed her. One day, her mom emailed me. She asked if I would please help her fix up the family's basement rec room. She wanted to make it into a hip hang-out.
What I interpreted from the request was that she missed her lovely daughter terribly and that she wanted a space in her home that caught the essence of this young bohemian. Maybe this mother wanted to send the message that no matter where her daughter lives or how she changes, she would always be welcome back home. And decorating the space in a way that her daughter would appreciate is proof of that.
Principal #1: Blue is a Neutral
You wouldn't necessarily think it, but blue is in the same category as beige, white, and black. Think of your favorite pair of denim jeans. You don't have to worry too much about what goes with them. They're a staple like khaki pants once were. The same is true with blue in a room. If you don't believe me, experiment at home. If you have something blue that you love and you're not using it because you don't think it'll work, try it. Give it a week and see if you like it.
Principal #2: Use What You Love
Look in your closet. You have items of clothing that have been with your for ages. You keep them for a reason. They're comfortable or they remind you of a special time in your life. In your house, if you love something, then find a place for it. This family collects giraffes and we were all so excited to get them out of storage and into this room.
Principal #3: Mix It Up!
We don't match handbags to shoes anymore. We mix gold, silver, and copper jewelry. We wear floral blouses under striped sweaters. We wear white in winter, for God's sake. As long as we've got moxie, we can wear whatever we want. That's what it means to be original. This rec room has furniture finishes in glossy white, gray, brown wood, and black. It has lots of metallic finishes. It has modern poster art. And it's all pulled together with swagger.
Principal #4: Eschew Perfection
Perfection is boring. Predictable. And a total buzz kill around young people who more than other humans, appreciate the quirky and the unusual. So let the dog sit on the couch, let the kids eat nachos in front of the TV and let the house be a home.
P.S. I do love sprucing up a room but I love writing about rooms even more. If you have an unusual room that you think would be a good fit for this blog, or if you need my help in updating a room, please get in touch. You can email me here.
Photos by Renn Kuhnen
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