Some people just exude style and can be counted on to live in well put together and drool-worthy homes. Learn from them, because this ain't their first rodeo. They've cracked the design code and have a lot to teach you about what makes for sophisticated and spectacular spaces. What is their secret? Here are seven common home elements that all chic people share.
1. A Confident Focal Point: One solitary statement anchors a room and automatically draws the eye. It can be a built-in feature of the room, or something you intentionally place for that purpose.
2. Something Organic: There's no better way to counter a bunch of stuff than with something that feels more alive. Natural elements add life (literally) to a space, and provide a sculptural element otherwise missing from all those right angles in a room.
3. Texture: The unsung hero of most rooms, and often the last thing considered when putting a room together. But the look and feel of surfaces add interest and depth. Too much smoothness and a room feels cold and lifeless. Too much in the other direction and you might lack serenity and calm. Find your balance.
4. Personal Effects: What's a home without the things you love, or the evidence of memories and experiences that you've accumulated? Surrounding yourself with things that mean something translates into an internalized and unshakable sense of style that will show through in your space.
Try This: Travel Photos as Art, Photos of Friends & Family, Textiles from Places You've Visited, Accumulated Collections, Handmade Accessories, Gifts from Others
5. Design Classics: Well thought out pieces stick around for a reason and stand the test of time. Design lovers keep an eye out for these long-time loves, and gravitate to them like bees to honey. They may be re-interpreted (note the shell chair above) but they are still true.
Try This: Chesterfield Sofa, Beni Ourain Rug, Parsons Table, Subway Tile, Safari Chairs & Campaign Furniture, Eames Furniture
6. Surprises: Too much perfection isn't a good thing when it comes to design. Instead, allow at least one unexpected, or even weird, thing to creep in to your space. It keeps people on their toes and makes things interesting. You can't always plan for it, but you'll know it when you see it.
Try This: Mismatched Furniture, Humorous Art, One Oversized Piece of Decor, Asymmetrical Furniture Layout, Classic Chair Upholstered in Modern Fabric
7. Negative Space: Stylish people know the power of blank spaces, and resist the urge to fill every inch of wall space and every corner with a design element. Confident rooms take a moment to breathe and, in doing so, let just enough shine through, without being boring.
Try This: Absolutely Nothing
*Re-edited from a post originally published 3.26.15 — AH