We talked last about the foundations of your room plans, the “bread” if you will. You can read all about that here, but the cliff notes version is that you want to choose a rug and curtains first. These two sandwich the room, and I’ve found it’s easier to design a room after these two items are chosen! 

Now we’ll move on to the next two things I pick when I’m styling a space! 


Before we dive in, I’d like to point out; I fully understand that sometimes you can’t change furniture and you have to work with what you’ve got. As you know, I’m a huge advocate of shopping your home and making what you have work for you before shopping new, so if this is you, don’t sweat! 

If your furniture is hideous, be creative and think of ways to update it. Maybe it’s with a little bit of paint or stain, swapping out hardware, reupholstering or even just throwing on a slip cover. There are hundreds of ways to update an old piece, so do a little research and enjoy the challenge of making a butt ugly item, pretty again!

Go Back to Your Inspiration

When choosing a piece of furniture, or deciding how to update what you currently own, I suggest going back to your inspiration board (I know, aren’t you sick of this yet?). I always have you go back to this because sometimes we get so focused on small styling choices that we can’t see the forest through the trees. Going back to your inspiration time and again, keeps the overall feel and look fresh in your mind! 

Head back to that inspiration board or your joy list and see if there are any common themes when it comes to furniture. Keep an eye out for styles, colors, or textures that you seem to gravitate to. Let me show you an example!

Via 123


Use Inspiration as a Guide, not a Map

Now let’s say I was choosing an arm chair. Looking through my three inspiration pics, I see some obvious similarities in the arm chairs. They all have an exposed leg and side, are neutral colors, are more contemporary, and are low to the ground. Now that we know these attributes, we can go on the hunt for something that falls in line with that. You don’t need to fall in to the trap that you must find the exact chair from an inspo photo. By following what inspires you as a guide, and not a map, you’ll have better luck creating a space that feels like “you”.

Experiment and Lose What Doesn’t Work

Take what you learn from looking at those photos and find furniture that fits in the same family as the furniture in your inspiration while also favoring your rugs and curtains. Don’t be afraid to try things out. If you get something in your home and it doesn’t look or feel quite right, RETURN IT! We make it a priority to only have things in our home that we absolutely love. 


I know that a lot of people choose artwork first as a means of finding inspiration for a color palette, but I’m just not to that level yet! haha. 

I like things to be formulaic and easy enough to work through step by step. That’s just how my brain works I guess. If you’re here, I’m assuming you have trouble working off one single piece of artwork or inspiration piece to style an entire room too, so that’s why I save artwork for this point! 

We have our top and bottom pieces of bread (curtains, rugs), we have the meat (furniture) and now we need the best part, cheese (artwork).

Trust Your Gut

This is one that you’re going to REALLY follow your gut on. Take a look through Minted’s fine art collection, Juniper Print Shop, or any other Art shops that you love and just see what you’re drawn to! If something catches your eye, save it and see if it plays nicely with the other stuff in the room. Don’t be afraid to get a little bold here! Artwork doesn’t have to match perfectly. It should however, be something that you love!

Make Sure Everything is in the Same Family 

This is how I chose the Alice print that we have in our dining room. I freaking love this print and when I saw it, I immediately knew that it was the right one! Seeing it next to our rug and the curtains, it doesn’t match completely as you can see but, they are in the same family and they just look nice together! I popped it in the room and it just felt right! 


Decide Where and What Size 

Now that you know which piece of artwork you want, you have to choose which size. Are you going to do a gallery wall, art ledge, or one large print? You could hang a few pieces of art stacked over one another. Just play around and decide what looks best and keep your receipts in case anything doesn’t quite fit! 


Trust your gut. You don’t need to be a designer to know what looks good and what works for your house. At the end of the day, if you decorate your space and you freaking love it, that’s all that matters! Choose each item piece by piece and use your Joy List and Inspiration Board as a guide! Can’t wait to see those beautiful homes! Tag me in your photos and I’ll share my favorites! @sam_joyhaven!