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Providing interior decorating services in Bonita Springs, Fort Myers, Naples, Estero, Sanibel and Captiva islands, Cape Coral, Orlando, Winter Park and surrounding areas of Central Florida. Contact for details!

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What's your decorating style?

Wrenda Goodwyn • special to the Fort Myers News-Press• July 21, 2012

Is your home feeling like a hodgepodge of all the furniture you have been moving from home to home for years?

Do you want to change your decorating style to better fit your current lifestyle but are feeling a little uncertain as to how to begin?

There are some tricks of the trade that may help. So before you head out to purchase a lot of “things” to “redo” your home, check these out and you will begin to find your decorating style.

The goal is to transform your home from something that may seem a little stale or discombobulated into something that reflects your personal tastes. Or maybe a change into something that takes your home from drab to wow.

Photo of traditional living roomTraditional style living room with colorful collections as accents, white walls and contrmporary fabric, rugs.

Maybe you have been living with shabby chic for a while and want to go contemporary with less clutter as is the current trend. Or perhaps you have just moved to Southwest Florida and want to make your home a little more tropical.

This means having a plan and a willingness to make a (positive) change. So what will it be — contemporary, modern, classic, casual, Florida style, eclectic, traditional, transitional or a mix?

It takes confidence and self-awareness and it may take a while to evolve. After all, it is your personal style, distinct and expressive of how you live your life. Most important: You need to love it. It’s a process. Think about how you want your home to look and work around it.

Photo of modular seating from West ElmCombining styles with this modular seating from West Elm, abstract artwork, wood flooring, vintage pieces and bold paint color results in a modern, yet natural look. Photo: West Elm.

Interior designer Deborah Chase of Norris Home Furnishings in Fort Myers recommends beginning with something that you love and working from there. She says it is also important when determining decorating style to consider how you are using your home.

“Is it a second home that will be used for family gatherings, entertaining and holidays? And don’t be afraid to try something different… a new paint color, something fun.”

Best-selling author and home design expert Lauri Ward of suggests “looking inside your closet for clues to your favorite colors. If you tend to dress in navy, camel, black and white, you probably will feel more comfortable living in a neutral colored environment.

“If you like to dress in primary colors, you can use one or two bright hues as accent colors for your home accessories, or even the wall color in one or two rooms (note: avoid bright color in every room as it can be tiring).”

Photo of Windsor Smith fabricBeautiful Echo Design and the Windsor Smith Home Collection for Kravet set the tone for a casual, Florida style with bright colors and patterns. Photo: Courtesy of Kravet.

Try some of these tips and your style will begin to emerge:

Visit a fabric store and note what appeals to you. Set up a Pinterest board and begin following other pinners who have tastes similar to yours. This will help you to begin to collect some ideas about how you would like for your home to look.

Visit model homes in the area and ask for permission to take photos of rooms that you like.
Follow blogs that offer suggestions and photos that are compatible with your wish list. Favorites:,

Create a vision board for one of your walls and include articles and photos from magazines that will give you ideas. Favorites: Home Beautiful, Better Homes & Gardens, Traditional Home, Coastal Living, Veranda. Your favorites will quickly become obvious. Look for trends.

Visit home stores and design centers for inspiration. Take classes and seminars to learn as much as you can about decorating. Local favorites: Miromar Design Center in Estero and Norris Home Furnishings in Fort Myers & Naples.

Remember: Finding and fine-tuning your decorating style takes time. If you need additional help, call a decorator or designer and have them help you pull it all together.

Wrenda Goodwyn is a Southwest Florida interior decorator. Visit her website at Call her at 949-1808 or e-mail For more decorating tips and photos, visit


Patchwork designs: Pretty Boho flair 

Patchwork has been a trend for the past year but it was never something that really excited me.  Too "grandma's quilt like," l thought.  And understand, I love quilts and have a collection that I treasure.

Photo of Victorian chase by SquintCustom Victorian chase by Squint.

Then I discovered Squint. Patchwork taken to a new level.

A British company that produces richly decorative home wares that pair fashion and design, they offer a kind of Boho patchwork. Perfect for an accent piece. The prices?  Well, they are up there. But it doesn't hurt to window shop and you may see something that sparks an idea. 

Photo of patchwork furnishings by Squint 

In addition, Squint has a gorgeous ecollection of furnishings, accessories and wallpapers.

Beautiful things. And inspiring. As a Fort Myers interior decorator, I encourage my clients to have one wow! piece of furniture, art or accessory in each room. This upscale Boho look adds a hint of luxury without taking itself too seriously.


Photo of colorful birdcage mahogany wine table by squintBirdcage mahogany wine table.

Photo of peacock on grass wallpaper by SquintPeacock on grass wallpaper.Photos: Squint Limited. 


Want to turn plain rooms into Spectacular Spaces? I can help. Contact me!

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Switch things around: Inexpensive, fun and a change for your home

Sometimes it is the little things that matter in a home.

Decorating with switch platesChevron stripes in Rainbow Bright Summer.For my interior decorating clients in southwest Florida,  I recommend three must-dos to make a change with a lot of impact. This is especially good for clients who don't want to spend a fortune, are on a budget (who isn't?) and don't want to redo their entire home. They are just want something new. 

The first is to please, please, please change your switch plates.

Take off those yellowing plates that have likely been there since your house was built and change them!

There are lots of ways to do this.  A favorite that is fun and inexpensive is to wallpaper them with washable wallpaper. It is is easy and fast.

Another way is to check out these cool switch plate and outlet covers from Modern Switch. They come in every style, design, theme and configuration.Decorating with switch platesTeal and white damask.

This is a fun, little change that doesn't have to cost a fortune, and it will not take up much of your weekend time!

Want to turn plain rooms into Spectacular Spaces?  I can help. Contact me!





 Decorating with switch platesChevron Tangerine Tango.

Decorating with switch platesMint geen damask.


Missoni Love: Dreamweave Bedroom 

Photo of Missoni fabricA decorator show house should be fun and this room certainly delivered.

Photo of missoni fabricCoffinier Ku Design teamed up with Missoni Home to create this Dreamweave Master Bedroom at the Kips Bay Decorator Show House in New York. It is whimsical and lighthearted. FYI: The show house has been extended through June 29, so you still have time to head over to see these inspiring rooms. I had the honor of attending a press preview just prior to the opening, courtesy of Kravet's Blogfest 2012. And I am still thinking about everything that I saw. 

Okay, so you may not want an entire room done in Missoni. As an interior decorator in southwest Florida, I do have a few clients who want to work in a few pieces of Missoni into their homes. 

I can say this:  it's pretty cool.

Want to turn plain rooms into Spectacular Spaces? I can help. Contact me!

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