Unify. The trick to blending different design styles is to unify the styles. It’s easier than it sounds.
Contrary to what we told about design twenty years ago, things don’t necessarily need to match. What you do need to achieve is continuity. When you mix styles you need find a way to make them blend or complement one another.
One easy way to unify styles is with color. Using deep rich warm colors to mix rustic pieces with more traditional pieces creates a cozy space. If you have a rich brown leather sofa for example, you may think Traditional but it actually can work well in a Rustic, Modern, Farmhouse, or Industrial space.
2. Lighting – Use The Same Metal
We recently did a kitchen renovation in a Traditional Gambrel Colonial. The kitchen had lovely original architectural detail and we wanted to make it light and bright. We installed white shaker style cabinets, stainless appliances and added a bit of contrast with bronze lighting fixtures. We used industrial sconces over the island and a more traditional crystal and bronze chandelier. The kitchen looks fabulous and congruent.
There a several places that I shop for tile where I could literally spend the day! The choices today are fabulous and endless. When you’re tiling a bathroom, tile can dictate the style of the space. For a recent reno project, we used Carrera marble in several different patterns to create a classic, but more interesting look. For another new build, we used Calcutta (which is very similar to Carrera but has a bit of pale gold veining) paired with the most fabulous encaustic tile. The room looks vintage but fresh and would work in a lovely farmhouse, cottage, traditional home, or eclectic home. Ironically, I found the encaustic tile on overstock at a great price point!
You can unify different styles by adding patterns and textures that have like colors. Use pillows and accessories to add pattern and evoke a particular style. Just keep the patterned pieces limited or your eyes will have a tendency to ricochet.
When you’re mixing styles, scale can make or break a room. If you have a French Country sofa with curves and great detail you want to make sure that you pair it with chairs that are consistent with the scale. Using 2 large wing chairs may dwarf the sofa, while using 2 slipper chairs of the right proportion can create a harmonious space.