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My Design Chat Takeaways on the Podcast Wives Winedown Wednesday

I recently appeared as a guest on the podcast Wives Winedown Wednesday to share the latest home interior trends and decorating tips and tricks. To listen to the full podcast, available on SoundCloud, click below:

While sipping wine with hosts Angela Bell Deems, Mitzi Hoag, and Lauren Graham White, the ladies wanted to hear about the basic direction home style is headed.

Me, Karen LeBlanc, Design Journalist, aka The Design Tourist, with the hosts of the Wives Winedown Wednesday Podcast
Me, Karen LeBlanc, Design Journalist, aka The Design Tourist, with the hosts of the Wives Winedown Wednesday Podcast, Angela Bell Deems, Mitzi Hoag, and Lauren Graham White

Here are the top takeaways from my Podcast design chat:

Making It Personal is the Predominant Style in Living Spaces:

The latest looks are all about personality and authenticity rather than copycat styles torn from the glossy pages of shelter magazines.  The overarching trend in home decor is more of an anti-trend— it’s all about creating spaces that tell your story through thoughtfully collected and curated elements and objects rather than meaningless stuff. Fill your home with possessions that have backstories which give them beauty and value that supersede any price tag. 

Stylish-ISH is the Design Mantra:

As people seek to personalize their living spaces, there is a lot of design-hacking going on, this riff on established styles. I call this home decor movement “Stylish-ISH” adding a dose of “ishness” that customizes the standard style lexicon: Think “Modern-ISH, Industrial-ISH, Retro-ISH and Traditional-ISH and you get the idea. Modern-ISH is sleekness softened with natural materials and textures. 

Retro-ISH brings in vintage elements in a modern-day setting creating a space that hints at nostalgia without looking like a museum exhibit. 

Industrial-ISH style takes on a softer, lighter look striking a balance between machination and sophistication with knurled detailing, warm metals, especially rose gold and copper, and glass elements.

My Decorating Formula:


The family room in my personal home embodies my design formula

I also wanted to share with you my formula for decorating rooms: Texture + Color + Metallic+ Organic =Timeless Decor. I think every room should speak to the senses with fabrics pleasing to the touch, plants that ground us in nature, metallic accents to bounce light and brighten the space and natural materials such as wood or stone for timeless appeal.

Deep Thoughts on Design:

As we embrace the idea of our living space as an autobiographical statement rather than a style with no substance, we are drawn to products, materials and objects that tell our story through craftsmanship and traditional artisan techniques rather than mass production. This emphasis on handmade, limited edition pieces circles back to our desire to personalize our homes rather than that “keep up with the Joneses”  look so pervasive in the 90s and early 2000s. As I said in the podcast, it’s an exciting time to design and create because there are no rules.” If it speaks to you, then it has style no matter how cray-cray others may say:

2018 © Nickolas Sargent Photography

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Karen LeBlanc

Karen LeBlanc is a travel host and writer with a popular travel show, The Design Tourist, and a companion lifestyle blog. As a widely published travel journalist and content creator, Karen is a member of the North American Travel Journalists Association. She also serves as the Design and Travel editor of the national lifestyle magazine, LaPalme. Karen believes that every destination has a story to tell through its local art, architecture, culture, and craft. This immersive creative exploration begins with authentic accommodations where the narrative of place unfolds through art, accessories, accouterments, furnishings, fixtures, and food.