Number One Decorating Tip

Home decor can be an intimidating thing. You know you want to live in a space that looks attractive and feels good to be in, but you don’t know where to start. What vibe are you going for? What is your true style? How do you create a space that feels like you?

I could go into a thousand rules about which color goes with which, and which type of material should never be placed next to another, but that’s all subjective. As with any kind of style, home decor is in the eye of the beholder. When you’re decorating your own space, do whatever feels right to you. And with that, here is the one single rule that I follow at all times:

Acquire and keep only that which is beautiful to you.

It’s as simple as that. If you’re at a flea market, and you fall in love with an antique mirror from sometime in the 1800’s — I mean so in love that you can’t even get yourself to walk away from it — as long as it’s within your price range, get it. It doesn’t matter that every other piece of furniture in your home is ulta-sleek and modern. It doesn’t matter that you once told yourself you’d never own something that had already been used in another home. Your style, like you, is ever-evolving, and paying attention to what you love in this very moment is how your own unique style will come — and continue — to be.

Antique mirror

Be in love with everything you own, right down to the most minuscule of items. There will be many times where you must acquire something for your home out of pure necessity — like a bottle of hand soap. You better be in love with that soap, from the way it smells to the bottle that contains it… which brings me to my next point: If it doesn’t totally appeal to you, change it so that it does. If that bottle of hand soap comes in an unattractive plastic bottle with the brand name planted loud and clear in front of your eyes… put it in a different bottle, like this.

Beauty products

There’s no reason for you to own anything that clashes with your vibe, disrupting the ease of your home. You know that notepad on your kitchen counter that’s brightly colored and totally goes against your earthy color palette? And that pen with the bank logo on it? You don’t need those. Make your own pad of paper. Mount it on a piece of wood. Come on, you like to do crafts — you probably have these materials in your junk drawer!

DIY notepad

Julia was laughing at me (lovingly) when I told her I wanted to talk about swapping out your notepad and pen for a prettier option in this blog post. “Only you,” she said.

Maybe I sound a little silly, but… give it a try.

Put that notepad and pen in the drawer for a minute. Find that piece of wood that you once used as an incense holder. Cut up some antique-looking paper that’s left over from when you made this botanical wallpaper, and nail it to the wood. Find that beautiful wooden pencil someone once gave you as a gift, and put it to use.

Wood slab notepad

Look, now even writing your grocery list is fun!

The truth is, in decor — just as in general life — every little thing counts. If you want to love the space you’re in, pay attention to all that you find beautiful… and surround yourself with it.

More home decor tips from the BLDG 25 Blog.

Follow FP Brigette on Twitter.


  1. great post! could not be more true! When I walk around my home, I feel so at ease with everything I have collected through the years :) and also… if anyone ever thinks “i promised myself i’d never own anything that was in another person’s home”?…. dumb in my opinion!! recycle!! and the pieces in my home that have that kind of history, whether I got them at a flea market or vintage store, or whether they were once owned by my parents or grandparents, etc, those are my favorite pieces! never underestimate the amazing things you can find at second hand stores! you’re saving money, and finding a piece with a history! Bridget, because of you, every time I walk into a thrift store, I go straight for the dining ware! and I now have all this beautiful array of mismatched plates, silverware, and lacey napkins! :)

  2. I really needed this post…I’ve been trying to refresh our home and get rid of things I no longer feel a connection to. But i’m also trying to figure out how to bring out my style in the cheapest way possible. I love all of your ideas!

  3. I totally agree with filling your home with items that you love. I have a beautiful Quan Yin statue, it’s right by my front door and every time that I stop and look at her I feel more peaceful, it can be just a glance, but it starts my day off on the right foot. I think when you surround yourself with items that you love, you do feel more energized, authentic, and alive! I know that I do.

  4. Love this, Brigette. As a lover of collecting beautiful things and displaying them, I think your number one rule is perfect. One of my favorite things to bring in the home are various plants and outdoor pieces…. There’s something so calming about being closer to nature. Thank you for sharing!

  5. I point this out to my parents all the time, since their type of designing a home is just the furniture and voila, you’re done! I think like you, every thing should fit the palette so that your home is an atmosphere of what you’ve created and that everything fits together to create your own little safe haven with just the colors, materials, and ideas that you want. GREAT POST, bookmarked and planning on making my parents read it!

  6. I am trying to apply this same philosophy to my wardrobe. I want everything in my closet to be fabulous!

  7. Free People… I am absolutely in love with your blog! Every single thing I read resonates perfectly with me and what I like to promote to my clients. LOVE everything you surround yourself with… surround yourself only with love. If you don’t love it, change it.

    Thanks for spreading beauty.

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