What’s Your Style Series: my own formula to get my style

Almost every magazine or website you look at has some kind of quiz to help you find your “style.” Here’s the thing – I don’t really think I can define my personal style. I just do what I love and hope it works. If it doesn’t, I try again. But, after redoing nearly every space in my house at least twice, I can tell you that I have a basic formula that I use over and over again and it always gives me a space I love.

the shabby creek cottage living roomNo matter what room I’m starting with, I know two things for sure: white walls and dark floors. Because the last piece of my living room puzzle isn’t complete, I’m still waiting on warm weather to show up so I can get the floors put down in here, but every other space we’ve done features the same white wall/dark floor treatment. I love this combo – it’s clean and sleek, yet warm and family friendly. I do love a great patterned rug on top of whatever the floor choice is, though. I’ve tried a couple of options in this space, but I’m currently crushing on this geometric one from HomeGoods.

farmhouse-style-livingroomI stick to mostly neutral furniture, in different colors, so it looks cohesive, but not too matchy. I like diversity, I think it brings interest into a space – not only in colors but also in styles. Notice the traditional wing back chairs and sofa, yet the industrial style coffee table, plus the modern metal side tables? No style is safe from my grasp if I love it enough.

My biggest trick is pillows and curtains. I want AMAZING patterns on those. You can bring a white room to life in a snap with a great pair of curtains. Think of it as the little black dress with great accessories. You can change up the whole feel of the space with a new pair of drapes.

the shabby creek cottage living roomKeeping my walls and floors neutral opens up easier changes like painting furniture or sewing a new slip cover. In a few hours with some fabric or paint, I can change the feel of my space without breaking the bank.

shabby creek cottage living roomI don’t stress about timelines. I let rooms evolve, knowing which direction I want to lead, but I give myself enough slack to incorporate an awesome find here and there like this chair. I wasn’t looking for one, but when I stumbled upon a $100 chair at HomeGoods, I fell in love with it.

shabby creek cottage decoratingNow on to the bling – or the decorative accessories. It’s the absolute hardest part for me. I’m notoriously picky, and I’d rather have just a handful of things I adore versus a room full I kinda like. See the crushed can vase? Yep, totally me. I try to find quirky things that are fun and lighthearted, without looking like they came from a dorm room. Ok, maybe the disco ball could be in a dorm room…

decorating with booksAnd then there are books. If it were up to me, I’d just have stacks of books everywhere (I think it’s the writer in me.) I love printed words, they just make me happy in almost any form. I never buy books just to be pretty, I want things that feed my creativity, my mind or my soul.

deer on chalkboardBesides accessories, the other hard part of decorating for me is artwork. I’d rather have blank walls than things that 50 million other people have. Even if I use traditional bought art (like the deer head above) I want to add it to my home in a quirky way. I strive to have things that are unique and make me smile when I see them.

So that’s my style in a nutshell. I don’t have a name for it (but if you do, hit me up in the comments.)

what's your style seriesWant to see other peep’s styles? Check out all of the awesome bloggers in this series:

Jenna from Rain on a Tin Roof
Lucy from Craftberry Bush
Melissa from Shabby Love
Laura from Finding Home
Roeshel from DIY Showoff
Michelle from Iron & Twine
And to help you find your style, Mohawk is giving a rug to one lucky winner.

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About Gina Luker

Gina Luker is a writer, photographer and lover of all things quirky. She's usually found with a drill in one hand and a cocktail in the other while blogging along the way. She's addicted to coffee, polka dots, rock stars, Instagram, and everything aqua.


  1. Its official – I have to have a disco ball – love yours! Everything is beautiful – that coffee table is amazing! And totally agree with you on the patterned curtains and pillows!

  2. Girl, we are decorating twins. I’m all about neutral colors for bigger pieces/finishes, and then I jazz things up with accessories. 🙂

  3. No matter what you call it – your style is spot on! Everything is so bright and welcoming!

  4. Beautiful pictures. I love the shades of blue. Thanks for this post.
    Carol L

  5. I am a retired interior designer. Your article really hit home with me because it is the philosophy I followed with my clients. Good for you! I love your home, your ideas and your sense of humor. Your living room is fantastic. Keep staying true to yourself! Oh, and can you tell I love your site!?

  6. What a beautiful, warm, family-friendly room! LOVE your style! Thanks so much for sharing! Life to the full! Melissa @ DaisyMaeBelle

  7. I love your style, whatever you want to call it (or not). 🙂

  8. Your style is so beautiful!! Everything works together so seamlessly! And the disco ball and crushed can vase are awesome! I love the unexpected!

  9. Love love your style. Question about your wing back chairs. Did you make the slip covers?

  10. Your home looks every bit as charming as you are, my friend! You have done such a wonderful job……..it looks
    warm, welcoming and comfortable! You are amazing!

    Miss you……..hugs!

  11. Mary Alice Kenley says:

    I don’t know if this is my style or not, but it certainly is my method. For 23 years, my husband was in the ministry, and we moved a lot. As a matter of fact, we are now living in our 22nd place in 48 years of marriage! We have lived in everything from dream homes to the lowliest, but only once in a parsonage (thank God!). When we moved into a place, first thing we did was to paint all the walls white and clean the carpets. After a year or so, we began to do the things we wanted to do, one room at a time. I would encourage all women to do it this way. You have to be in a place a little while to really know how it’s gonna work. Now that we are settled in at the lake, we can do what we like, knowing we will be here for the long haul! Congratulations on your beautiful home!

  12. Oh man! Can’t believe I sold my disco ball this summer at my garage sale! I love the way you used it for a little bling! i think you can’t go wrong if you surround yourself with the things you love. It’s difficult to find words to describe my style because I don’t really have a particular style. I guess it could be called vintage, cottage, farmhouse chic. My finished basement is spanish colonial. I do love that you use white walls and dark floors so you can change out your decor without having to paint all the time and you use color in other ways.

  13. You are so point on with this! i have taken so many style quizzes to try to pinpoint my style just so I can have a name! I’ve been labeled transitional, cottage, vintage, polished casual, ( a new one!) till I finally realized I am ALL of those! I like you, decorate with what I like. What makes me smile and love my room. I want to walk in and love it no matter what the “style” is. I say if it works in the room and I love it…who cares if it’s different styles? I love your room and love the deer head. 🙂

  14. Chasity Cubbage says:

    This is so great… imso happy I found your site… I think we just may have the same layout and type of Mobil home 🙂 this give me hope that I can bring mine back to life lol….do you have any photos of your kitchen? I’d love to see it

  15. I am in love with your home! So beautiful!


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