My friend Cynthia asked me today:
“I need to figure out what I want for my laundry room, mudroom, and pantry. I find the Internet generally overwhelming. I’ve checked some books out of the library, but I’m not optimistic. Any suggestions where to look for ideas?”
I answered her question by email, but then thought: “This would make a great Friday Five post!” And since I was already late with this week’s Friday Five anyway (sorry!), I thought I’d share my answer to her here.
1. Start with Pinterest…but with a focus.
OK, so I know Pinterest can be overwhelming (see Cynthia’s comment above about being generally overwhelmed by the Internet). Plus, now that there are ads on Pinterest, it can be frustrating and hard to find what you’re looking for. Here’s what I suggest.
The picture above is a screen shot of some of my Pinterest boards. See how they’re broken down by room or category? Well, I didn’t come up with this idea – lots of magazines, blogs, and designers do this.
Find some sources you trust and whose design you like. For example, if you love farmhouse design, find Joanna Gaines’ page. If you love something more eclectic, try Emily Henderson’s page or Jenna at Rain on a Tin Roof’s page. You get the idea. Find designers and/or bloggers with similar styles to what you like and go to their specific page. Then see if there’s a board for what you’re looking for; if not, you can search those boards.
2. Use a Broader-Based Source to Find Your Style.
If you aren’t sure what your style is, use a broader source, one with lots of styles.
Go to the Pinterest pages of HGTV, DIY Network, House Beautiful, This Old House, Country Living – any source that talks about or shows a wide-range of styles. All of the boards are broken down either by room or style. You can also search the boards for what you’re looking for.
3. Go Right to the Source.
If Pinterest isn’t helping or it’s too overwhelming, go directly to the design magazine, blog, or designer’s website.
For example, I love Sarah Richardson’s Designs. Here’s her website:
Click the “portfolio” tab and you can search by room. Other sites (like Dogs Don’t Eat Pizza!) have a search bar, where you can type in the room you’re looking for. If you know that you like a certain designer’s style, going right to his/her site is a good, focused way to get some ideas and inspiration.
HGTV.com, DIYNetwork.com, and magazine’s sites also have search functions, where you can search by room or by designer or by style. Just keep in mind that these sites cover a broad range of styles, so you might have to weed through a bit more to find what you’re looking for.
4. Pin What You Find.
Wherever you find photos of rooms you like, pin them to your own board(s) on Pinterest. I would create a board for that room specifically. If you don’t want anyone to see what you’re pinning, you can make the board “secret.”
5. See What Those Photos Have in Common.
Once you have pinned a bunch of photos of rooms that you like or with ideas you like, make a list of what it is exactly you like about those rooms. If you can’t identify exactly what it is that you like about a room, check all the photos you have pinned and see what they have in common. Usually, you’ll find a design style or element that you pin over and over, which is probably the style you like most.
How have you found ideas and inspiration for rooms in your home? Share in the comments! Thanks!