Hers + his = home

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With the excitement that comes with getting married and moving in together, have you slowed down to take a moment and talk about the type of space you want to create? Amid apartment or house hunting, or checking your wedding registry, or attempting to merge two lifestyles into a cohesive one, it’s all easier said than done.

Because it’s no longer the dark ages, you probably won’t have to worry that his stuff is all blue and yours all pink and oh, my goodness, what are we going to do with all of his bachelor-pad oversized leather furniture and lava lamps? But there will inevitably be pieces each of you has accumulated throughout your years of living alone or with friends that you can’t imagine giving up. Read on to learn some quick tips on how to blend his and hers into a cohesive, inviting space.

Live in Your New Space First
The absolute first suggestion is to spend some time in your new home before picking paint colors, selecting all your furniture or taking a trip to IKEA that inevitably ends in bright yellow bags of unnecessary goodness. Understand how you both are using your new home. Where do you spend the most time? Are you a couple who likes to lounge together in the living room, or do you spend more time reading, relaxing and streaming in your bedroom? Answering questions such as these can help you decide where to invest.

Once you feel that you both have a good handle on the furniture and accessories you’re hoping for, go shopping–together. Even if your aesthetics are different, shopping together could lend more level-headed decisions with your differences of opinion. And equally importantly, it could help avoid arguments later on down the road. Listen to each other. While you might not agree on everything the other says, try to distill down to what the other is trying to get out of your new abode.

Focus on Personal Collections
Another great way to blend his and hers cohesively is creatively incorporating personal items in a new way. Do you have band posters that have stayed with one of you since college? A collection of quarters? Stacks of magazines you refuse to part with? Consider framing some choice posters, parts of that collection, or a few pages out of those magazines and making a totally unique gallery wall that still shows off both your personal styles in a connected, beautiful way.

Blend Creatively
Don’t be afraid to mix materials! This is a great tip for any home but is especially prevalent when you’re trying to fuse his leather and brass with your soft fabrics and woods. The beauty of these natural materials is that they inherently complement each other. Gone are the days of all mocha-stained furniture needing to match and only one type of metal accent in a room. Try incorporating a natural wood coffee table with metallic legs, a fabric sofa and a leather chair, tied together with colorful accent pillows and throw blankets you both enjoy. You might also find yourselves doubling up on certain items, such as end tables, lounge chairs, dining chairs and more. You don’t have to necessarily start from scratch or toss one of these out. Can you nest your end tables? Does a mix of dining chairs create a cool eclectic look during meal time? Don’t be afraid to let things go, but giving certain items a chance may inspire a totally one-of-a-kind look for your new stomping grounds.

Find Something New
Understand that you might not need to blend everything. Instead of trying to seamlessly integrate your tastes, find common threads or your in-between styles. Get inspired together and learn that Pinterest is a friend to everyone. Opt for updated versions of both your preferred pieces. Recliners are not nearly as reminiscent of Grandpa’s style anymore; modern and sleek recliners keep him comfortable and your place looking up to date. In a similar regard, if you love tons of color and can’t imagine scrimping on hue-heavy walls, explore those colors in softer tones. Keep the color and encourage the compromise.

Freshen and Renew
Be willing to change things up. Accent pillows, greenery and florals, table lamps and throw blankets are all easy to change out as seasons go by. This will give each of you the opportunity to add or subtract items throughout the years, making your space feel more collaborative than ever. And always remember, your person is more important than any one thing. Try not to let decorating dilemmas trick you into thinking you’re not meant for each other.

Maybe cohabitation is where the time-honored adage of compromise rings true. Maybe you lucked out and have the exact same aesthetic as your partner. Either way, creating a space that feels as at home to you as it does to your significant other will create a healthy, happy oasis for years to come. HLM

Sources: brit.co, houzz.com, laurenconrad.com, mydomaine.com and refinery29.com.