Design Envy? Ask Yourself These 5 Questions

Have you ever experienced design envy?

Well, it’s real and it can hit you hard. Whether you’re at your friends house enjoying coffee in her newly renovated kitchen, watching the latest Fixer Upper reveal, scrolling through Pinterest, or double tapping your Instagram feed, sometimes you stumble upon a design that just stops you. You are entranced by it’s beauty and are instantly envious. You find yourself wondering why your own space doesn’t look like that.

Then you start hating on your own space. Constantly comparing it to that perfectly styled interior shot (that probably doesn’t look that clean and organized on a day to day basis). Instead of asking yourself the right questions, all you focus on is the negatives of your space. Your jealously may even result in some back handed compliments.

Well, before you head too far down that path, let me arm you with 5 questions that you should be asking yourself when you find yourself drooling over someone else’s design.

Ask yourself these 5 questions:
  1. What was the first thing that drew you to this design?

Was it the color of the walls? Or is it just that the space is so perfectly put together? Do you really love it or are you just obsessing over a snap shot that doesn’t reflect the true reality of the space?

By figuring out what drew you into envy in the first place, you can solve your own design dilemmas. Maybe that’s the exact flooring you’ve been looking for or maybe it’s simply that you are craving more organization in your current space. Take a minute, look at the space you’re drooling over, and decide what the initial “awe-factor” was.

  1. What elements do you find beautiful?

Is there some great antique piece that you wish was in your own home? Or does that bathroom have the tile you’d love but your husband would hate? Write a list of the elements in the design that you find to be beautiful. Then, move on to question #3.

  1. Is it your style and would any of it work in your home?

Take the list from above and ask yourself, is this really your style? If the answer is “yes”, then the next question is simply “will it work in your home?”. If you answer “yes”, then make it work! And if the answer is “no”…

  1. What can you take away from this design that could inspire a space in your own home?

Let’s say the answer to either of the questions in #3 is “no”. Now ask yourself, can you take these elements and use them as inspiration? Perhaps you really love the reclaimed wood wall but your house is by no means “rustic”. You could, however, try to incorporate more natural wood elements into your home.

If you’re obsessing over the bold wallpaper but you hate wallpaper or don’t want to deal with potentially removing it in a few years, you could incorporate a bold print in your curtains or wall art. Find printables or actually buy a yard of wallpaper or fabric and frame them in a cute gallery wall setting.

Think outside the box and don’t be afraid to try something new!

  1. Is it ok to ask them where they got something or what color that is?

The answer: YES! People love to be complimented and it’s so easy to just say, “I love that wall color. What is it?” or “I have been looking for a chair just like that! Where did you find it?” You would be surprised how quickly they’ll give you the info!

Make sure you are asking the right person. If you’re on Pinterest, no matter how time consuming, track down the original author of the post/owner of the picture and ask them. If you’re on Instagram, make sure there isn’t anyone tagged in the comments and it was a regram. Don’t be afraid to direct message someone either!

And speaking on Instagram, check the tags on the photo because some people will tag the source of every single element.

So whenever you’re feel that green giant of envy creeping up, step back and ask yourself these 5 questions.

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