Q: We just bought a new home, and I’m concerned that since there are so many choices and decisions to make, we will make mistakes. How can I prevent making too many?

A: The fear of making a mistake is the main reason we don’t take design chances. It is also the reason we make decisions that we feel are “safe” like beige carpet, walls and upholstery.

It’s important to remember that there are no wrong choices for your home because the house doesn’t care how you decorate it. The right choices are the ones you make, just for you, by looking inside yourself. This may sound unusual, but I have learned through working with clients that it’s “your interior” that you are actually decorating. If it feels right it is right.

What does that mean? We all have reactions to our senses. What colors are we attracted to? What are the sounds we like? What are our favorite aromas? What fabrics do we like to touch? Being able to answer these questions tells us if we are creating an environment in which we can be happy.

This is where many people go wrong. Instead of trusting what they know is best for them, they ask other people. As you go about designing and creating each room, you will be talking to many people. You’ll find that everyone has an opinion and will want to share it with you. They’ll feel strongly about what they are telling you because it is right for them – not you.

Remember, no matter who you are working with, you still have to be your own general contractor and interior designer. You must let your thoughts and feelings be known. Whether you are doing a major remodeling job or just decorating a room, every worker who comes to your home (electrician, cabinetmaker or painter, etc.) will have an opinion of how and what you should do. But this is their opinion.

Don’t get scared and don’t lose your confidence. You started this project for a reason; stay focused on that. This also applies to well-meaning friends and relatives who want to help you get what you want. What they don’t realize is that they are advising you from “their interior.”

Now, here are some hints: I highly recommend that you look through magazines to help identify your taste and to get ideas. As you gain a better understanding of yourself, you must make sure that there is a lasting value to your ideas, and that they are not just trends that look good for a short time.

I know doing all this sounds like it takes a lot of time and energy. If you do take the time to do it, you will find it is time and energy well-spent. The result: your home will be happier because it is personalized for you, healthier because it is designed for your comfort and well-being and more beautiful because it is designed for your taste and style.

You will also discover that you’ll spend less money; make fewer (and hopefully no) mistakes and live in an environment that reflects the real you. After all, you are the final word in how you want to live.

Remember, rooms have no feelings, you do.

Barbara Kaplan is owner of Interior Designer for Mindful Living. Reach her at 480-998-5088.

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Holistic Living — It’s All About Design! Ask Barbara! Barbara Kaplan is an interior designer specializing in holistic living. For information, call 480.998.5088 or visit www.barbarakaplan.com.


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Email questions to kryan@orourkemediagroup.com.

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