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Moving In When You and Your Partner’s Tastes Don’t Match

If you are asked to list all the reasons why your partner is perfect for you, the result would probably be a fairly long table. That does not mean, however, that your style preferences fit together perfectly. Even your ideal partner may not have the same ideal life situation as you. But you both deserve to live in a space that you love. So what do you do? Whether you are going to live together for the first time or are finally ready to compromise, we have some tips and tricks.

We interviewed our Freshome team to identify a number of different tactics that you can use both. Our goal is to make it easier to design a space that you both like, even if your taste does not match. These are our top four recommendations.

By choosing furniture with clean lines in neutral colors, you choose timeless pieces – and pieces that your partner probably likes. Image: Maginnis / Twenty20

Choose clear lines.

Look for pieces that are made of natural materials, which are generally crowd pullers, with clean lines. Clean lines do not mean that you choose something boring. They just mean that you pick a piece that can be integrated with a variety of different flavors. You actually do yourself a favor. These types of pieces have a severe endurance. The Yukon Natural Coffee Table from Crate & Barrel is a good example of this.

Regardless of how the taste of you and your partner changes over the years, furniture with clean lines will always be easy to integrate. Think of your dining table, book shelves and other furniture in the same way. You will rather choose pieces that you and your partner will enjoy, not just today, but for years to come.

Another way to make your space look clean and attractive for people of different tastes is to opt for mirrors as your artwork. When you and your partner have different tastes, choosing art can be a powderkeg. Mirrors are a great way to add visual interest to your space without having to fight for design. In addition, they will brighten up every room, making them feel bigger.

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A leather sofa – like the Hamilton leather sofa – can serve as a neutral base, anchoring the space and even balancing the most eclectic tastes. Image: West Elm

Go neutral.

What a surprise. When you try to choose pieces that will please people of different tastes, neutral colors are best. Before you accept, we now tell you to whiten your space and make something so conventional that everyone’s grandmother likes it, wait. Yes, neutral colors are a great solution to combine different flavors. But they do not have to be boring. You can opt for a neutral duvet, then layer on cushions and you like to throw. It is much easier to find smaller accent pieces that you and your partner like. By being neutral for the larger investment pieces, you set yourself up with a foundation on which you can build.

If you go in and are looking for your first bank, remember that leather is neutral. And thanks to the lush texture of this material it can still have a high impact. A streamlined leather sofa like the Hamilton leather sofa from West Elm can anchor your living space with a piece that you both like.

When it comes to your textiles, go neutral too. When you come in, you may notice that this color sows division between you and your partner. You still want to give your space some visual interest, so look for texture. This Foil Diamonds rug, also from West Elm, has attractive colors, but the changing pile ensures that it does not look too dull or conventional. The Fieldcrest Basketweave Linen Shower Curtain at Target relies on the texture of the fabric, not the color, for its visual interest.

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Lay your base with the classics – such as hardwood floors and neutral walls – and then add accent pieces that suit you and your partner. Image: Oscar Wong / Getty Images

Follow the popular vote.

Whether you move in together or have lived together for decades and think of a reno, choosing luminaires and finishing can be a nightmare if your taste is not right. Fortunately, you have something popular to guide you. Choosing what most people love is not only a great way to end the debate and settle for something (finally!). It also increases the appeal of your home. This not only means that more of your friends will like it, but it also means a higher trade-in value when you give up your home.

Go to the stalwarts of a good design, such as hardwood floors and stainless steel appliances. If you and your partner disagree about most of your home design, popular taste can accompany you. Again, as with neutrals, you can follow this guide for the basic aspects of your home. Then add accents that can easily be changed (and easier to match) to add your own personal flair.

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Moody paint and airy lighting fixtures can blend harmoniously if you give them room to play together. Image: Caiaimage / Robert Daly / Getty Images

Make room.

Compromise. If one of you chooses the coffee table, let the other person choose the decor of the coffee table. And do not be reluctant either. You may be amazed at what you will love when pieces get sentimental value over time.

Speaking of those sentimental pieces, be open to creating space for them in your home. If you are both the type to estimate items, choose a few that you really like and that you want to have prominently in your home. Put them all in one place and view them as a group.

What do they have in common? Where can they best be used? Creating a cozy reading corner with the old chair of grandma can both be of service to you. Creating a viewing area on a bookshelf where you can assemble an eclectic collection of things that speak to you – both together and separately – can create a conversation starter in your living room. Before you accept, you hate everything your partner would choose for your home, be open. Finding that middle ground can create harmony at home – and with your home design.

What are your tips and tricks to find that nice place where both partners are happy with the look of the house or apartment? Did you make discoveries at the meeting that you wished you had known before? Share with us in the comments!

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