Whoever coined the term “Home is where your heart is” was well attuned to the way our homes become our sanctuaries. There is something both thrilling and peace inducing about having your own space for the first time, whether it’s your dorm room, your first apartment, or your own house. For centuries people have taken pride in their personal spaces where they can style a location that is all their own; we most enjoy our homes when we create them to be an expression of our personalities through finding the right presentation aspects that suit our inner selves.
As Monica Leed, the bestselling author of the home design and organization book Simply Spaced said, “From wallpaper to gallery walls or a simple coat of paint, you can transform your space with just a touch of intentional love. Color is a powerful tool that stimulates our subconscious mind.”
When your friends and guests enter your home, you are not alone in wanting them to get a taste of who you are. This is why letting people into our personal spaces can feel extremely intimate sometimes. Although an obvious way to style your home to match your personality is through the right display of decor and personal mementos, another lesser realized tactic is to apply color in a way that expresses both you and the mood you hope to set. Color can be extremely tone setting, so with the right implementation you can adjust the entire ambiance of your home.
We spoke with style and design experts at the top of their fields about how to style a home in a way that fits your personality. They offered rich advice on their own favorite ways to enhance your space through design.
The co-founder of artisan goods company The Little Market suggests decorating with personal details; adding personal touches to your space will make it feel more like home to you and your visitors.
“Over the years, I have loved making a house a home — a place where my family and I feel comfortable and safe and my loved ones are always welcome. It’s important to me to incorporate our personalities into our space, from the interior design and colors to the trinkets and memorabilia on display. When selecting pieces from The Little Market, I like to mix and match with what will resonate the most with me, my husband, and Liam and Charlie. For example, I like to bake apple pies this time of year and love apple scents. William and I always have our apple cider or apple candle going during the fall. When I designed my sons’ rooms, I selected pieces like stuffed animals in their favorite designs or neutral throws and pillow covers that could be easily paired with brighter pieces that match their growing personalities. When adding new photos or flowers to display, I opt for our neutral picture frames and clear etched vases to add texture to the space while still letting the picture or bouquet have its moment. When leading with your personal interests and taking everyone’s favorites into account, you can’t go wrong,” says Lauren Conrad, Co-Founder of The Little Market.
The founder of modern furniture company Modloft says to remember the others who share your spaces with you, and to try to find common interests or design themes to structure some common areas around.
“While your space is your home, you might also share it with others. In this case, your home should reflect each of you individually as well as you as a team of independents with very different tastes. Collaborate with the others sharing the space to decide what mood and feelings you want the place to evoke. Maybe you want your home to feel welcoming and comfortable, or maybe you want it to evoke a sense of freedom with light, airy colors. Maybe it’s your artist's lair and you want every room to inspire you in different ways by using different colors,” says Ted Toledano, Founder of Modloft.
The CEO of entertainment ware company Sophistiplate emphasises the significance of colors in regards to how much they can say about your personality. For instance, since colors carry certain suggestions of moods and feelings, the way you paint your house can state a lot about who you are. Maybe your home is bright and peaceful in gentle shades, or maybe it’s vibrant and bold.
“Your apartment should encompass all of your favorite colors. Your favorite color says a lot about your personality and who you are. When you style the apartment based on the colors, you are also basing it on your personality. Also, use your favorite colors with your favorite aesthetic,” says Daniel Seehoff, CEO of Sophistiplate.
The interior designer and color consultant for paint company Colorfully Behr says one easy way to select your color palette is to first start with a color family, then narrow down and sample shades until you find one that works with the light in your home. Also, Hellander recommends working off of a mood board or well-loved home item if you don’t know where to start.
“Color is personal, and the one you choose for a particular space all depends on the feeling you’re trying to evoke. Narrow the pool down to one color family you love—and from there, sample, sample, sample until you land on the perfect hue. I recommend looking at existing design elements that you know you love—like a favorite art print, tile backsplash, throw, or piece of furniture. Oftentimes, you can pull out hues from these fixed or beloved elements that work nicely on walls. Layout your favorite items to create a version of a mood board, and from there see which colors pop out as your go-to hues,” says Rob Hellander, Interior Designer and Color Consultant at Colorfully Behr.
CEO and co-founder for interior design help company The Finish, Stephanie Purzycki, says if you don’t know specifically which color scheme you want to work around you can always choose a well reviewed color. 2022’s big decor color of the year is eagerly anticipated to be green, which Purzycki is full of ideas on how to effectively style.
“When you’re choosing a green paint color for a room and you’re thinking about the light in the room, you almost want to choose the color that’s counter-intuitive. Typically, you think you’d want to brighten up a dimly lit room with a light color green, but it’s actually the opposite! I prefer to use a darker deeper tone of green in a gently lit room to play off the moodiness. You can then brighten it up with white linens or furniture. Then, in a bright room, light sage greens or super pale mint shades work really well. You don’t have to paint a room entirely green to still bring in the calming, neutral effect. Botanical prints are also really popular right now, especially in wallpaper, so [green is] becoming a really popular accent color for trim to complement wallpaper. [Green has] also been a big accent color for upholstery: drapes, throw pillows, things like that—and [in] lots of different shades from emeralds to olive to sage. Chartreuse and olive work well as accent colors for pillows and decor, while deeper and more neutral greens are perfect for walls or upholstery. I’m loving moss-green velvet for sofas and drapery right now,” says Stephanie Purzycki, CEO and Co-Founder of The Finish.
The CEO and founder of ADU construction and design company Cottage points out that the reasons we gravitate towards certain colors can be revealing about ourselves. Even if you don’t know which color to start with, there are self suited guidelines that can help.
“We always have certain colors we are drawn to, but sometimes the deeper reasons why are more complex than we even realize. If you’re not sure which shades accurately sum up your personality, one method to match color and self is by examining your best shades through an analysis of whether you are a winter, spring, summer, or fall color scheme. These studies are based upon your skin tone and eye shade to figure out which colors look best on you. And if they look great when you wear them, the same should apply to how they look on your walls and in your home.
“Another deeper reason we might like particular shades and colors has to do with the emotional connotations they evoke. For example, yellow is sunny and positive, red is fiery and bold, and orange is confident and earthy. This is another great place to start when you want to utilize color in your home,” says Alex Czarnecki, Founder and CEO of Cottage.
Founder and CEO of athletic wear brand Oliver’s Apparel, David Wolfe, reminds us that color psychology is an in-depth personality study that pairs each person’s traits and self with a color palette that expresses their inner desires. When in doubt, Wolfe points out that knowing your color psychology can help you decide how to style your home in a personal way.
“You can turn to the basics of color psychology in order to style your apartment to match your personality. Color psychology says that everyone’s favorite colors reveal all that is needed about their personality, likes, dislikes, and state of mind, and it matches them with their specific color personality. With this in mind, it’s obviously quite important to choose wisely when you paint your walls; you can style your whole apartment around shades that complement your color personality if you truly want your home to say something real about you but still in a way that others won’t expressly understand unless you explain it to them–in this way it’s still highly private,” says David Wolfe, Founder and CEO of Oliver's Apparel.
You do not just need to use paint to style your home with color. Instead, the head of sales for Balance Homes recommends weaving statement and complimentary colors into your decor and furnishing items.
“Some great places to incorporate color in your house that are not the walls–say for example, if you wanted to have more of a neutral wall color and decorate with pops of color–are throw blankets, rugs, wall art, dried or fresh flowers, displayed pots and pans, vases and odds and ends jars, and even couches. This method of using decor and furniture to implement colors works well for those who don’t want just one statement color, but more of a mix flowing throughout the house or rooms,” says Daniel Osman, Head of Sales of Balance Homes.
There is more to each of us than can be easily summarized or displayed, but one place where we can all present insight into who we are is in our homes. When anyone enters your house or apartment, they should feel as though the space well compliments the owner, even though they may not be able to pinpoint why they feel this way. As the experts have shown us, using color in your home can be a fantastic way to style your apartment to fit your personality. The best way to start is simply by picking a color you love, but if you are still not sure, there are various methods you can turn to for choosing your best colors.