In Defense Of The Mixed Furniture School Of Thought

When it comes to furniture and the different decorating styles you could use in your home, you can go in many directions.

Some people swear by Feng Shui while others just put the furnishings where they like. Then there are those who choose a specific décor style, like Modern, Contemporary, Minimalist, Industrial, Scandinavian, Traditional, or Transitional, doing their best to view their preference as the boundary conditions about what’s permissible.

While, of course, there are no wrong choices, and everyone is entitled to their own tastes, you can be eclectic without causing havoc.

The way to pull this off is to break the rules.

Everything does not have to match. You can add interesting items to your décor even if it doesn’t fit your current style. If you happen to fall in love with the elegance of wood and upholstery pieces from Century furniture you don’t have to sigh and walk away because the stuff you like is closer to Contemporary than the rustic and weathered finish of your home’ present Industrial design theme

Here’s the thing: what you’ll quickly notice about relaxed, lovely spaces are that they’re an artful blend of variegated styles. The reason why this can work if done properly is simple—the overall look-and-feel pleases the eye and appeals to the senses.

In fact, matching may not be essential at all to home décor. It might even be construed as boring.

The truth is that you can mix styles and get away with it. You can mix styles like a seasoned interior designer once you understand the rules of imaginative decorative flow.

Use the Pareto Principle to Balance out Diverse Décor No doubt you’ve heard of the Pareto principle by it’s more popular name, the “80/20 rule.” Unless you’ve been living under a rock, it’s mentioned everywhere, especially in self-help books and blogs on how to reinvent yourself. It’s also popular in business books on how to reshape your business model, 10X your sales, and redefine your brand.

Despite the liberal use of this principle to enlighten those in pursuit of personal development or business success, the idea originated by Italian economist Vilfredo Pareto in 1906 was first used to describe a phenomenon that he noticed in his homeland. In Italy, 80% of the land was owned by 20% of the population. What was remarkable about this observation–and the reason for the economist’s immortality–was not the unfair distribution of wealth and privilege but that this statistical rule of thumb appeared to apply to all sorts of economic conditions, as well as perfectly relevant to things outside economic theory.

Well, the 80/20 rule also happens to work remarkably well when it comes to home décor.

Use 80% of the space in a room for one style and dedicate the other 20% to another style.

Let’s return to our original example of Contemporary and Industrial décor. If you wanted to introduce Contemporary furniture into a room with an Industrial theme, you could get away with introducing 20% of it without risking chaos. Although the two styles are based on completely different philosophies, a room with 80% Industrial design can comfortably absorb 20% of any other style.

Erase the Indoctrination of the 80’s from Your Mind

Where did we get the idea that everything had to match in the first place? While it might be difficult to trace back the origin of this idea, we do know that it was the golden rule of interior

designers in the 80’s. But we now live in an age where rapid technological progress has made the idea of predictability seem antediluvian.

So–matching isn’t necessary. Aiming for compatibility is good enough.

To wrap your head around this idea, think of things in terms of groups rather than styles.

A group can be defined by size, color, texture, and the like. This means that you can place décor from different eras in the same room without raising any eyebrows—provided they have enough in common to be chunked together as a group.

The Secret Key That Opens All Doors

When home décor works, you don’t question why something is in a particular space. Everything appears to belong, and all the various décor elements, styles, and themes play well together.

You can get away with the use of eclectic décor if you understand the principle of balance. That’s the secret key. And you can achieve balance by distributing visual weight evenly. If every element in a room has one or more friends, then “everyone” appears to be quite at home.

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