What is an interior stylist? What do they do? Do I need one? We demystify the role of an interiors stylist and give tips on how to style your home like a pro.
Not long ago, no one had really heard of interior stylists, let alone know what one was or whether they needed one for their home. And, although we now bandy the coveted job around freely, there's still some confusion over what an interiors stylist actually does, and whether it's a necessary skill - after all, we all know the best way to plump the pillows and cushions on our beds.
But the likes of Pinterest and Instagram are proof that we all naturally gravitate towards a more professionally styled home. That's not to say it has to be a new, pristine show home, as the job of a stylist is to make any home - a relaxed-style family home, contemporary apartment or country retreat - tell its owners story and feel comfortable for those that reside within those walls.
What is Interior Styling?
Styling is the art of curating, arranging and editing objects and furniture to create a visual story. Previously the reserve of glossy magazine shoots, department store windows and hotels, we're now actively encouraged to 'style' our own homes with the same theory in mind - tell our own visual story to be more content, relaxed and 'at home' in your abode. Gather the things you love, arrange them thoughtfully, edit your selection and add considered items where necessary.
Here's our 5 tips for telling your style story...
Before you move a chest of drawers, rethink your cushions or arrange your console table, ask yourself (honestly) why you are styling the space. It might be to create a room or home you enjoy more; maybe to show off a new item or piece of French style furniture (we've all rearranged a whole room for a new statement chair!); perhaps to create a bit more space.
Who is it for? Perhaps a place that functions as a family home or a retreat after a busy day at work, to rest and recharge. Are you creating a home for others - if you're listing your property on AirBnb or have guests coming to stay?
Whatever the reason, bearing your 'why' in mind throughout the styling process will give the most authentic outcome which will ultimately stand the test of time.
2. Focal Point
Your focal point is the hero of your space, the item you want eyes to be drawn to - a beautiful French bed, a velvet sofa or an antique French armoire. Arrange all your other items in relation to your focal point to provide a narrative, give a sense of scale and to lead the palette. When you step into the room, is your focal point immediately obvious?
3. Considered Curation
On a magazine shoot, the role of an interiors stylist will be to source a myriad of beautiful home accessories and furniture to complete a 'homely' look. Fortunately, when styling our own homes we already have a lot of items we love and treasure - perfect for showcasing your personality and story. Look around your home for items to add to the space you're styling, then, if you feel something is naturally missing - a soft throw, a cool rug, quirky wall art or a French accent chair - look to buy that special item.
Once you've curated your items, both old and new, add plants, flowers and fruit displays to bring everything to life.
4. Essential Editing
Quite often a space is finished before you've finished! Coco Chanel believed you should take one thing off before you leave the house; a similar theory applies to interior styling.
Look objectively at the space you've arranged - do any items feel forced? Is one item obscuring another? Is anything stealing the lime light? Every object should be in the space for a reason (love, practicality, sentimentality etc.), it needs to be pulling its weight - if it's not, remove it. We all know 'less is more'!
One of the best ways to edit a space is to look through a camera's lens or take a picture. Seeing your space in 2d often makes the editing a lot easier.
5. Enjoy Creating a Beautiful Home
Practice might not make perfect (is a home ever really finished?) but it will certainly make you feel more at ease taking on different rooms. The more you play, curate, arrange and edit, the easier and more natural it becomes. If you feel overwhelmed, take a break and come back with fresh eyes - something that might have been baffling you will suddenly become clear when you step back in the room.
And if you're still unsure or would like a little more guidance, chat to our friendly, trained in-house stylists who are always happy to help discuss your home. From luxury beds to beautiful chandeliers and French style dressing tables, we always happy to share our passion with you.