Are you hoping to move from one style to another style? It can be very stressful, I know. I had a very ‘Tuscan’ house at one time full of red and yellow, but I wanted a house with neutrals and a little bit of blue. Those looks are very different, and they don’t go well together. There isn’t a good look that incorporates both that I’ve found.
To have a room that works, I think you need to go all one way or the other, so if you are transitioning from one to the other, the ‘in-between’ time isn’t going to look good.
If you are changing your look in a drastic way like I did, the first thing I want you to know is that the room probably is going to feel awkward to you during the transition. I don’t like an awkward room, so this phase was very painful for me. Transistioning from one style to another can be painful.
HAVE A PLAN
One thing that is helpful is to have a plan so you can make the changes that you need to make in the quickest way possible. Having lived through the process I definitely know it is worth it, but yes it was not easy. I decided to make slipcovers for all of my furniture. It took awhile to complete all of that sewing.
CLEAR THE ROOM
Another tip I have is to remove all of the things in the room that are not going to work with your new look, as much as you can. There may be some empty spaces, but I prefer empty spaces to furnishing and furniture that clash.
SELL THE OLD STUFF
Let’s say you need to buy some new furniture for your new look. One thing you can do is to sell your old furniture to help finance the new furniture. You might be surprised by how much money you can make. How much depends on your area, your local market and where you sell your items. If you have a lot to sell, I prefer to go to consignment stores. You’ll probably only make 50% of the selling price, but you won’t have to deal with buyer phone calls, strangers in your house, bad checks, and so forth.
DO THE WORK YOURSELF
Also, try to think of what you can do yourself to save money. I mentioned that I made my own slipcovers. You could also paint the room yourself, rather than hiring painters. You could buy furniture second-hand to keep costs down. Maybe there is other work that needs to be done that you would be able to do yourself. Changing door knobs for example, is usually really easy.
Lastly, keep your eye on the prize. Try to imagine that room once the change is completed. It’s going to be amazing.
Lea Ann Boswell says
I began transitioning my home decor from Tuscan to Neutral, April 2017. I cleared out everything I knew wouldn’t work with this new look. I also looked forward each day to your posts for my daily inspiration and mentions of antique stores in the Houston area. I’ve made several purchases from stores in the Heights neighborhood. I also bought your first book for ideas and tutorials. It’s beautiful!! Things are looking pretty good over here.
Oh Lea Ann, you are so kind. Send some photos! I would love to see your beautiful home.
Ginger Valdes says
Oh, Anita ! The pain! No, it’s not easy, but so worth it in the long run if you want your home to be your haven. Just seeing the red and orange fabric on your now slip covered chairs reminds me of some of the fabrics, napkins, tablecloths, ceramics, etc. That I purchased on impulse in Italy, without really having a clear direction or plan of what I truly wanted. (And red and amber orange just were never my colors!).
Where were you 15 years ago when I was making all the wrong choices and living with them for so long??! Just thanks for being here now!
In my apt I cannot make major or structural changes, which is ok, but am trying to figure out how to change my bedroom, which I have never been entirely satisfied with, so do appreciate your thoughts.
Patti Smith says
Perfect timing!! I am also transitioning from from yellow and reds to white and blue. I wrote some time ago to tell that we are downsizing from a large home to a 1400 sq ft patio home. I love it!!! But it was so painful to get rid of 2 rooms of furniture and many many decorating pieces, wow!! I knew it would be hard but no idea how hard. I have gone to all white with many shots of blue. White walls, sofas, and in the process of painting furniture white. I am feeling so light and loving the white. My canvas cushion covers are white and can be cleaned at the cleaners or in my washer. I have 4 grandchildren and NO area will be off limits to them. And the white is working out just fine!! I love your advice and this blog came at a perfect time. Love all the pictures too! Oh and I plan on introducing Violet, my other favorite color!!
Patti Smith says
also your French Accents book is on my desk in our great room!!!
LINDA J says
So, there was more than a few of us going Tuscany Style some 10 years back? No wonder I can’t seem to sell any of it on Craigslist, lolol!! I am finally going back to my first and always love — Vintage Romantic — and it is such a RELIEF to have repainted our Merlot walls a restful, soft green. I have loved pinks and greens since I made my first decorating effort at 16!!! Saw some bedspreads I really loved, put them on layaway and paid for them with my part time job (my mom was like that…you want it, you buy it…)…..and here I am 45 years later, and I do not consider it a rut!! Nothing so beautiful could ever belong in a rut!! However, just to prove I’m not stuck in a rut, I am using a dash of Farmhouse in the kitchen — and it all blends so well….I love it and LOVE YOUR IDEAS!!
I know!!! Tuscan stuff was so hot back in the day. If you know the style you love and you are loyal to that style, I call that decorating confidence, not being stuck in a rut. You do it the way you love it!!
It’s awful transitioning decor styles. Like you I remove everything that doesn’t go together and do without instead of having things that clash. In addition, I am not good at judging the proportions of things, so an empty space makes it much easier for me to plan out what I will put in the space. Great advice about being patient, but it is very hard.
Norma Rolader says
Beautiful and a lot of inspiration