It is a useful practice of Interior Designers, to ask a client to see their favorite personal 'item' to use that for style ideas. Let's say you have a favorite rug or scarf. If you love the feel and colors of the item, then use THAT as your palette to design your home. [If you've ever watched the TV series Dress My Nest, you'll know what I'm talking about. That show was a favorite of mine.]
Pick an item (or two) of yours which is special to you (mine are shown above). Your favorite item can be a piece of jewelry, a painting or print, a vase, basket, a plate or china pattern, or a piece of clothing like a scarf or print. Choose something that just brings you joy to see it. How would you describe the style? Is it classic, clean lines, modern, antique, nautical, rustic, art deco, romantic, etc.? Are the colors neutral, intense, pastel, vibrant, earth tones, or high contrast? Just look at the item's colors and style and use those in your environment. For instance if you have a favorite picture, is the frame wood or metal? Use the same wood or metal in your home.
If your item is a print, poster, painting, or scarf, all the colors probably already work harmoniously together. Then, you'll know the colors will work well together in your home. Pick the neutral color as a basic neutral in larger spaces like furniture or carpeting. Choose one or more other colors from the item to use as an accent color in your home for smaller space like an accent wall, pillows, throw rugs, curtains etc. If you love the item, you'll love the feel of your home or environment.
The same principle works for your wardrobe as well. Figure out what it is that is pleasing about your style item and use it to add similar colors and style to what you wear. I have a set of china which I love.* I cherish it. Each time I use it, or see it for that matter, it makes me feel so happy. I have a plate hanging on my wall as decoration. I use the colors in my wardrobe. I use the cream, ecru, mint, and khaki as my neutrals. Then I use the yellow, teal, or red rose as accent colors. Once I realized I was using that as my style inspiration and color palette, it made me more choosy about what to add to my closet or home. If I only add the colors that are in my inspirational item, than I know they all work well together, and I can mix and match with ease. It simplifies things….and that is one my goals.
I'm working on it.
* Shown above are MY style inspirational items. I have a small purse I found at a resale shop, a silk scarf which goes with so much, and my china set which I found at a Garage Sale while scouring Northern Michigan with my sister Diane. These are things I treasure. I love all the colors in these items and am happy to have them and their colors around me.