YOUR style notebook :: Your new decor identity
Wednesday, October 23, 2013 by {darlene}

 Ready for another entry in Your Style Notebook Get that gorgeous notebook, your lovely pen, and get ready to dive in with just a few questions to get us going! {For more on what Your Style Notebook is, check out the first post. Also, if you missed last week’s challenge, you might want to take a moment to write down your Decorating Box words.}

And I do hope you will join in for the entire series, as we work together to fine tune and/or identify your own personal style. Not mine. Not your mother’s. Not your best friend’s. Yours!

Each week, we will work together – kind of like an online, interactive design session. Our goal: Identify our personal style so that we can surround ourselves with things we LOVE {not just like}.

style notebook


Entry #2: A new decor identity

So, I love the comment that Cheryl left last week, after saying goodbye to her Decorating Box:

“out the window, eclectic! I’m feeling exposed . . . . losing my identity. . . . I hope you have a remedy for this!”

and then there was Gyen, who bravely admitted:

“Even though I love the image that those words conjure up. I’m trusting you with my identity here!”

True. These decorating “words” can really define our decor and style identity. They can give us some structure. Something to hold onto in a Pinterest world of zillions of styles. We use these Boxy words to describe the “look” we are going for, and sometimes, these words even help us shop. They help us to make decisions…

Except when they don’t.

Sometimes, we are left thinking “I really love this dresser, but it is not Vintage Beach. AND, I am Vintage Beach, so this darling dresser must not truly belong in my home.”

And yet, you loved that darling dresser….

or “This chair feels way too traditional, and I am Eclectic, and I have way too much traditional going on already in my dining room…”

And yet that chair was so dang awesome… and you loved it…

THIS is precisely why The Decorating Box words put us in a box, and often, leave us with a bunch of unfinished business in our homes. We become paralyzed by the very words that are supposed to help us.

So, “help me, Darlene,” you cry! “If these words are not my decorating identity, then I am a fish out of water! I need SOME direction here!”

I shall not leave you hanging out to dry. Because I have a solution for you. A NEW way of thinking about YOUR OWN personal style. Let’s head to our Style Notebooks, shall we??

Because I am about to tell you what your new decor identity is…. {<-Tweet this}

new decor identity


Entry #2: Your Style Notebook

Ready for your second exercise in Your Style Notebook ?: {this one has 4 steps, so don’t miss them!}

So last week I promised: “We are going to get rid of our boxes and replace those words with ones that will give you direction…. not fences.” Here goes:


Your next task in Your Style Notebook is to write down your NEW Decorating Box“I decorate with things I love.”

There you have it! See, I told you I would not leave you hanging! Everyone needs boundaries in this overwhelming image-driven decorating world; and your new boundary is this:

My New Decorating Identity is: “I decorate with things I love!” {<- Tweet this}

Now, I know that doesn’t exactly solve all of your decorating problems, but I am telling you: The minute you get this concept in your head and make it your new shopping mantra for your decor/style needs, you will feel free!

Goodbye Eclectic. You were fencing me in and I didn’t even know it! Now I am free to decorate with what I love!!

You see, the MOST amazing designers… THIS is how they operate. They may have a brilliant knack for pulling color and fabric together, but at the heart of what they really do is this:  They decorate with what they LOVE! And guess what? YOU CAN TOO!!!


So, task two: Commit this to memory: “I decorate with things I love.” This thought is what will replace your old Decorating Box.


Find a way to share this notion with one other person. For ideas, see below “Our Community Style Notebook.”


Well, as you can imagine, nothing is ever that simple {although… it kinda sorta is!}. So your final task this week is to take a sneak peek at this post. Some of you may be familiar with it {refresher course!}, but either way, it is an IMPORTANT read! Start your wheels turning, okay!?


Our Community Style Notebook

Each week, we will join each other in community, as we share our thoughts. Here are some ways you can be a part of it all!

1. Tweet your NEW Decorating Box words: “I decorate with things I love!”, and use the Hashtag #StyleNotebook

2. Share on Instagram, using the Hashtag. You can share an image of your notebook, of an actual box, one from your own home, or from a magazine, or a post, or whatever. No boxes here! #StyleNotebook

2. Head over to the Fieldstone Hill Design Facebook Page and tell the world that you are going to Decorate with things you Love!

3. Leave a comment on this post, sharing your thoughts on this.


The time has come to do it like the best of the designers: Choose what you LOVE! No more Decorating Box Words!

When is the last time you ignored the Decorating Box and picked something, just because you loved it?





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Labeled: style notebook


  • I’m going to love having a style notebook. I decorate with things I love. That’s the truth. My aim is to do it with the clever wit of my mother whose self-proclaimed style was Contemporary Contemptible. Jo @ Let’s Face the Music

  • I accept the challenge! We are in the process of finishing remodeling, and cleaning, and organizing, and getting ready for the arrival of our baby… so I will have a blank canvas in my home. A little scary but your idea is great! If I love the item, it shouldn’t be too hard to decorate with it :). Thank you!

  • I’m pretty sure I’ve overlooked things that I really liked because it just might not “work” with “my style”. But I loved it! So from here on out, I’m decorating with things I love!

  • Kathy in Mukilteo, WA

    Although I haven’t always decorated with the things I love, that is the past. Now I decorate with the things I love!


  • This seems like an interesting series and it seems its time to go back to the beginning and start from square one. Meet up with you guys in a bit.

  • EEK! Behind on actually WRITING my assignments down; they’ve been in my head! So I’ve recently (since we moved back to the States) purchased fabric in geometric patterns and colors that were not in my box and I’ve made pillows and even recovered some stools and they are so FUN! Loving your encouragement!

  • I love to decorate with a mixture of classic neutrals and incredibly bright accents. The stark difference is exciting and can be changed to reflect the seasons.

  • We’re starting from scratch just about (does anyone else’s house feel a little like the inside of a storage unit…?), which hopefully will make decorating with the stuff we really LIKE and enjoy easier. No worries here about “needing” certain types of furniture or accessories to make a proper decorating theme! Just decorating with what I love. :)

  • I’m so excited about this process! This has come at a perfect time in my life.

    My list is as follows: *Inviting, *retreat, *timeworn (I have kids. LOL!), creative, order, calm, and it needs to breathe.

    I’m feeling freedom in this decorating thing already! My home has never been mine because I feel like I have to decorate to only one style.

  • Verónica Domurat

    Before I do part 3,
    This are my words that I want for my home,
    Artistic, creative, cozy, earthy, elegant, kid friendly and organized.

    And the part of I decorate with things I love, I am going to apply it to my painting too, I will only paint themes that I love.
    Thank you Darlene!!

  • I bought an odd little crushed velvet glider/rocker a few months ago, the color is not quite green or gold, and the wood is not like any others that I normally choose, but I fell in love with it. And? It works. Even with all the turquoise. LOL

  • But what if what I love is so scattered it won’t look good together?

    • I find that when people take the time to identify what they truly love, and their own personal style, they make choices that somehow all seem to work together. Some of THE most amazing designers use so many different “styles” and combine them. You can try using a unifying color, if you find yourself selecting lots of different kinds of items.

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