I don’t know about you but I have a folder on my desktop FILLED with images of rooms I love from Pinterest. Every once in a while I go back and look at them for inspiration and divine design enlightenment. I’ll remember some dining room table accessorizing I loved that I want to remind myself of, or a colour palette. There’s one room I’ve saved 5 times over the years, lol. Every time I see it it’s as though I’m seeing it for the first time and I save it again.
I do the same thing with buying avocados. I always think I’m out of avocados. I am never out of avocados. I go to the grocery store, remember I need avocados, grab some and then when I come home with them I see the fridge is filthy with avocados. Tons of them. I am literally never out of avocados. Regular Karen knows this. Grocery store Karen however is always convinced she needs avocados.
I don’t have Alzheimers. I took a test.
How to pin for Pinspiration?
Just pin whatever you like. What your gut reaction to a room is. Don’t spend any time analyzing and critiquing it. If you like it. Pin it.
But what if that image is of a library in a Scottish castle with 20′ high ceilings, you say?? Doesn’t matter. Pin it anyway.
You may look at a room and like it immediately but when you really look at it you have NO idea why you like it. The chairs are weird, the colours aren’t something you normally gravitate towards and when you really dissect it, there isn’t anything in it you’d ever actually buy.
THAT’S WHERE THE MAGIC OF OVERPINNING COMES IN.
Keep pinning and pinning (or saving and saving images) and when you go back to look at the images things will start to make sense. You’ll realize OH! Look at that. I’ve saved 30 images of rooms that have a tiny bit of robin’s egg blue in them. Or all the window frames are painted black. Or all the rooms look completely different but they all have a piece of modern art on a rustic table in them. Whatever.
It’s when you gather everything together and look at it all. THAT’S when what you like will start to make sense.
You just have to pay attention.
I mean, obviously if you’re looking at Pinterest (or gasp … actual MAGAZINES) for something specific like table lamps, then you’re just looking for lamps. But if you’re looking for a broader type of inspiration. For the way a room flows or feels … that’s when you just go hog wild Pinning.
Weirdly I don’t Pin a lot of stuff. I drag the photos onto my desktop and then save them in separate folders … on my computer. So I’m recreating Pinterest on my own computer. For what reason? I have no idea. Maybe I’m secretly convinced this whole Pinterest/Internet thing is a flash in the pan and is close to imploding at any moment.
Like I said, I’ve been doing this for years so my folders are getting pretty packed with stuff. When I really REALLY like something I also flag it.
Let’s take a look at some of my flagged living room inspiration photos.
Uch! Nate Berkus’ Greenwich Village apartment from a few years ago. That’s when I really started getting into gold velvet which I’m still pretty dreamy eyed about. I sent this image to a high end designer I know and her immediate reaction was she LOVED it. Her second reaction was to say that if an interior designer took all the pieces in this room and tired to sell their clients on it, most clients would say no.
If you really study the room some pieces seem to small, some too 80’s, some too bland, some too bold. But put together? The create an outstanding room.
What I particularly love: The chairs.
Moody, moody, moody. This is a room begging to be napped in. And then to play with a Ouija board in.
What I particularly love: The ceiling painted the same dark colour as the walls. That’s what MAKES this room.
Again Nate Berkus creating a room full of stuff I might not like (coffee table, two little runners) alone, but together it’s perfect.
What I particularly love: I’m a full-on sucker for bookcases, especially behind a sofa.
ANYTHING else over this mantel and the room just wouldn’t be the same. I like this room. I have NO idea where it’s from but it kind of feels like an American trying to give a room a French apartment feel.
I remember when I first saw this room in Country Living 3 years ago. I had the horrible realization that I like country. It was alarming to me. I don’t like cutesy country but more of a clean lines country. More Americana than shabby chic.
What I particularly love: The little green plant in the brass bowl on the mantel. Seriously.
Remember when I said you had to gather a lot of photos to start to realize some of the similar elements? Wall moulding. I didn’t realize how much I would love wall moulding in my house until I put all these living room inspiration photos together. If a room doesn’t have wall moulding it has some sort of plaster or marble architectural detail.
What I particularly love: Kind of all of it. The lamp with the classic Chesterfield, the antique chest with the propped art on it and the mantel. Those wouldn’t be the chair’s I’d pick but the reason the room looks so good is because of the balance and contrast they give to the heavy sofa. If there were two heavy upholstered chairs across from the sofa the room would lose a lot of its appeal.
Again. This is the difference between a room that’s done by a designer and one that’s done by your average Joe. Every single choice shows confidence the average homeowner just doesn’t have. Yup. That’s a leather folding chair.
What I particularly love: The mess, the books, the magazines and the mirror. PLUS the scale of everything.
This is one of those rooms where I kind of don’t like anything in it individually but I like the feeling of it.
What I particularly love: I just told you. The feeling, lol.
This room was designed by one of Ralph Lauren’s proteges. So you know he knows what he’s doing. The room has a lot going on. Like super huge a lot of going on. But again it feels cozy and comfortable. Even *with* what appear to be a billion foot ceilings.
What I particularly love: The chairs (which are obviously too big for the space but they said SUCK IT, who cares) and the TV easel along with lots of art propped around it.
Again here I go with the full on country. It reminds me of the English cottage in The Holiday. I mean it’s great and if you don’t think it’s great I’m going to wonder very much about your sanity. This is real life.
What I particularly love: Fireside dining. Wingback chairs.
This looks like the coziest of cozy English smoking lounges. Is that even a thing? I feel like this room would smell like tobacco and horse sweat. Which, if you’re wondering, is a good thing.
What I particularly love: The colours, the gallery wall and the funny little pull out wall sconces.
could NOT find source. 🙁
Here it is. The room I Pin over and over again. I can barely even look at it I get so tingly. It kills me that I cannot find the original source for it because I want to see MORE. I WANT TO SEE THE WHOLE ROOM! What kind of sofa is in there? What’s the coffee table like??? The lighting???? Based on this tiny section of the room I’d guess this is in Italy. That’s a completely wild, gut reaction guess.
What I particularly love: All of it. Seriously. The black background portrait, layered with the bust and white matte art, over the mirrored wall. The herringbone wood floors, the wall sconces, even the side by side matching wood baskets.
You know what’s funny? I always say I don’t like high contrast. But most of these rooms and definitely the ones I love the most are VERY high contrast. White walls with black accents, or black walls with black accents and so on.
I would never have guessed or thought that based on my own personal decorating thoughts. I needed to see all these inspiration shots to realize I do in fact like contrast when it’s done a certain way.
Going over the photos again I see I like black, white and gold with natural elements like stone, sticks, branches, plants or raw wood. I did know that, but seeing so much of it in my inspiration shots really does bring it home for me.
I’m off to make a coffee ( I don’t need any photos to solidify the fact that I LOVE coffee ) and study my inspiration folders again.
Also I need to pick up some avocados.
Have a good weekend!