Hi there! Hope you’re off to a great summer. Many of us love to travel during the summer and some of you may even have a summer retreat. Today I wanted to share a few design tips on how I would approach designing a home away from home! The incredibly fun aspect of designing a second or vacation home is this is your chance to really explore and push your design limits.
I know often when we are working on our homes, we tend to take the safe route. The first thing to do is decide on what story you want to convey. Now I want to point out I am not talking about a “theme.” Often when people are talking about design I hear the word – theme. This is a no no! Rather you should focus on what is the style or story you want to convey. The way I get to that answer is by first asking myself what would inspire me and my family in this space. In this case I would ask what would inspire me if I could get away from Houston.
For you that might be wild pattern play, bolder colors, subdued tones, totally washed out finishes – are you starting to get the idea? Next, I would look at all the areas where I can bring these elements into my projects, such as in upholstery fabrics, fabric textures and patterns, wallpapers, pillows, paint colors and more. Can you start to see how the feeling, story or tone you want convey will come through in the pieces and finishes you select? Personally, I love the idea of pushing the design limits and truly incorporating a tad brighter and bolder color palette, richer patterns and bolder design motifs. Like any project I suggest working on it a room at a time and mapping out the project with a design plan so you can shop anywhere in the world – not just where your retreat is located. Of course take cues from the natural surroundings around you – this may be the ocean, the mountains or other similar natural elements. I love working with the incredibly inspiring surroundings of a home So for example if you’re working nearby the beach you may want to consider natural fibers such as jute, using durable outdoor fabrics inside, more airy furniture plans, sheers instead of full window treatments, lighter wood finishes and lighter fresher paint colors.
If you’re working on a project in a cooler, mountainous region I might consider brighter colored oversized wool rugs, cozier furniture arrangements, fuller upholstered pieces, storage for blankets, richer wood tones – are you starting to see the picture? Again all of these ideas come from answering that original question of what you want to your space to do for you. So how do you approach decorating a second summer or winter home? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!