Inspiration. It’s what keeps us growing and being creative. It’s something we should be seeking out in all aspects of our lives. And when it comes to our home design, it is hopefully never ending. I know people who will rearrange their homes twice a year, to change the feel and flow. There are people who repaint rooms regularly. And of course, there are those who see a wall and imagine the room without it.
So how do we keep inspiration coming – especially if you’ve been in your home 15-20 years? There are so many fantastic opportunities in front of us every day that can help to inspire and motivate us. Sometimes we need to just open our senses to what’s already around us. But, if you need a bit more help on finding home design inspiration, here are some of my favorite ideas.
Often, people will come into my open houses who live in the area and have no intention of selling their home or buying the one I’m holding open. So why do they come in? Usually, they’re looking for inspiration. They may be thinking about a remodel or redecorating, and taking a peek at someone else’s house may be just the inspiration they need.
Open houses are a great way to get ideas for a remodel, for how a particular layout will work for for home design ideas. With interior designs, you can think of an open house as a designer showcase, in many situations. Most top stagers are also interior designers so staging is much more about the feel and style than just plunking furniture any which way.
This one is pretty obvious, Pinterest is the mecca for all things inspirational. But are you using it in a way that can truly help you? I have a lot of different boards for the various things I want to do in my home. Whether it’s furniture styles, paint colors, kitchen design or landscaping, I love to be able to have all the ideas in one place.
But you can take Pinterest one step further. My sister has been thinking about a redesign of her house for a long time. She’s created her own boards, and shared them with key people with strong opinions (mainly me and her daughter,) and we can look at them together from different locations and share comments. Much like Compass’s “Collections”, Pinterest allows for review by many and meaningful feedback by key decision makers.
Granted, it’s not just “Fixer Upper” that is great inspiration – pretty much any show on HGTV can be – but this is the show that has created a full industry around it (and driven the white farmhouse popularity on the Peninsula). Part of what makes Fixer Upper such great inspiration is Joanna Gaines’s approachable manner and how she keeps all of her design ideas functional and livable. Also, shiplap!
Thinking of remodeling your kitchen? There are shows for that. Bathroom? Ditto. Basically, you can get a million remodel and home design ideas from these shows. So find the ones whose style you connect with, and spend a day or two binge watching.
This one is a bit of an off-shoot of the Fixer Upper inspiration. If you’ve truly indulged in the show, you know that Joanna Gaines takes regular treks to antiques fairs, especially the grand-daddy of them all, Round Top (in Round Top, TX, population 90). Finding ourselves in Texas during one of the semi-annual fairs recently, my friend and I carved out two days to spend antiquing. We easily could have spent two weeks, there was so much to see.
Not only did we buy a few things (we would have bought more if we’d driven a U-Haul home,) but we got tons of inspiration. I got ideas for home decor, home furnishings, design styles and ways to display mundane items to make them really interesting.
I learned ways to mix beautiful old pieces with current, less special pieces, to make for great home design. I’m prepared that when the time comes to remodel my home, it will require another trip to Round Top – this time with a truck.
You don’t have to go all the way to Texas, though. There are great antiquing opportunities around the Bay Area. Alameda has a monthly antique fair, which is pretty good sized (not Texas big, but big enough). Mill Valley, Carmel and Napa all have fantastic antique stores, and there may even be traveling antique fairs you can go to when they come around. Take a look at the past to get ideas for now and into the future.
Now that you’ve heard some of mine, tell me what are your favorite sources of home design inspiration?
IMPORTANT NOTE: I have not and will not verify or investigate the information supplied by third parties.
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