Welcome to Decorating Diva, where every week we share fresh, fun ways to update your home and spice up your living space! If you've ever tried to talk about paint samples, lighting options or the merits of a glass verses wood coffee table with a disinterested partner, you know how frustrating it can be to decorate as a couple. But creating a space you both love doesn't have to cause a meltdown (or send you into couples therapy).
We asked Shawn Rabideau, celebrity event planner and Celebrations.com expert, for his best tips for decorating as a couple. "Decorating together can create communication between the couple, and by decorating together it allows you both to feel as if it's your home rather than one person's home," he explains. He shares a few simple ways to spice up your space as a twosome.
Decor challenges: Couples edition
There are several challenges couples face when they decorate a space together. The first is varying tastes. "Not all couples have the same exact taste, so compromise is going to help the decorating go smoothly," says Rabideau. The next challenge couples face is budget, which has the potential to cause a lot of stress. "Not all couples have the budget to do a full 'space makeover,' so working with what they have, getting creative and focusing in on items like wall color and throw rugs will make the process enjoyable and go smoothly," he advises.
Ready to get decorating? Here's how to do it in a way that won't make your guy feel like he's living in a pink-only palace.
Keeping things neutral
First things first; find a color balance and stick with neutral hues. "I would suggest that women should try to go with some neutral tones with pops of color," says Rabideau. "Stay away from the soft colors like blush or violet and go for the deeper richer tones like plum, bright yellow or red," he advises. Taupe or yellow-beige might also work if you want something a little brighter. If you're looking for something richer, butterscotch or a burgundy would work well, notes Rabideau. "In general men want women to stay away from pink."
Flowers are a great way to add color (without overwhelming with one shade). when adding blooms to your space, fall-colored arrangements make the perfect gender-neutral addition, says Rabideau. He suggests trying an arrangement like this one filled with roses, sunflowers and gerbera daisies for a neutral dose of color.
Play with patterns and accents
Incorporating the right patterns into your space can be an easy way to create an eye-catching look that works for both of you, and one that ensures you don't get bored with your surroundings. "Being this is a space that is for both I would suggest nonfloral patterns," notes Rabideau. He advises opting for geometric patterns or patterns that are color blocked instead. "I also suggest doing a lot of pillows on chairs and couches. Nothing too frilly, but something that can add a pop of color and texture and make the space comfortable."
Pillow pick: We like this chevron patterned pillow cover in fall-ready ginger hue.
Couples decor: Compromise is key
You might never turn your guy into an interior design aficionado, but you can meet him halfway to make the process easier for both of you. "if you're concerned with dragging him along to paint stores, bring the swatches to him. Ask for his input," says Rabideau. "Sometimes guys tend to glaze over with too much information, so if you approach him with small bits of information over time, then you are more likely to get more honest answers so that he doesn't just 'yes' you to death," he explains. Sharing the work is also important and a great way to bond while redecorating. "Rather than make him paint, you do the painting with him."
Do you and your spouse decorate together? Share in the comments below!
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