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My name is Gerrie Wydeven doing-business-as Wydeven Designs. I have been conducting this small GREEN business since 2004. Wydeven Designs, based in the Atlanta, Georgia area, sells CHAIRS, LOVESEATS, CHAISES, SETTEES and other fine, well-constructed refurbished upholstered pieces. I love to travel, cook, take photographs and generally follow style and decor topics as well!

Friday, July 22, 2011

Decorating Styles - A Primer

I asked my loyal followers to suggest some new topics for this blog and one of my most loyal (OK, my sister), suggested that I do a series about decorating styles - what are they; how do I know which style I prefer; and, how do I decorate using my preferred style.  Of course, my emphasis will be on the upholstered pieces aspect of style - with some references to complementary hard pieces (e.g. tables, cabinets) and other elements of decor.  I wish I had the space to stage my refurbished masterpieces in a larger setting to show how well they integrate with various styles of decor.

After (exhausting) research, I noted that there are three major styles of decorating:

a) Traditional
b) Contemporary
c) Eclectic

Briefly, they are defined as follows (this is a compilation of several sites including decor.com - one of the most prolific websites on the subject):

Traditional:  Traditional design is a mix of beautiful, timeless and well-defined elements.  The style creates rich sumptuous living space using layers of luxurious furniture accessories. Color palettes can be pastels or bold, regal jewel tones such as burgundy and golds.  The furniture has more of the soft curved lines such as Queen Anne style and are in warm wood tones.  Traditional decorating often emphasis symmetry and classic lines.

Contemporary:  Essentials for contemporary furniture are clean lines, geometric shapes and lack fussy extras.  They usually have exposed legs - without trim, tassels or skirts.  Many people believe contemporary to be all sleek and neutral but it can have funky colors and shapes.

Eclectic:  A graceful mixture of the two primary styles is called eclectic.  It is a planned mixture of the best of both styles and has elements of both (not a haphazard unplanned mixture of both).

The next series of blogs will deal with other subjects - including "how do I know which style I am".

The following are examples of each style of furniture - recognizing that placing them into an actual setting might change the overall design.  For example, placing a traditional chair into a setting with more sleek contemporary pieces will render it an eclectic decorating space:

Camelback Settee - Contemporary in its clean lines and lack of fussiness

Pair of Art Deco Chairs - Contemporary in their clean lines 

Traditional Wingback Chair - Jewel Tone Fabric and Queen Anne Legs

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