I asked Brian recently what he thought my style was, and he said “Hmm…’stuff’. You like stuff.” I laughed despite the slight offense because well, he’s not wrong even though that’s certainly not what I’d like my obituary to say.
“Emily Henderson. She loved STUFF.”
When people say “I know you designed that room the second I saw it on Pinterest,” I always internally ask How?? What was it about it that screamed Emily Henderson?? I’ve done every single style over the years, truly, and yes they all look like “me.” I know that “happy” “vintage” “approachable” and “eclectic” are all in there but go up to the ROOMS section and you’ll see a huge variety of work. Anyway, as I’m still trying to figure this out (and determine how we move forward with content), I’ve been looking at older work and finding so many consistencies, despite the time span.
The photo on the left is from 9 years ago; the right was last year. And strangely, they have SO much in common. It’s a mix of styles: more traditional (Persian rug) and mid-century (wood armed chair). There is blue, brass and caramel leather involved, an architectural metal shaded lamp and what we will call a “statement foliage.” There is an effortless flow to the room and even a softness in the curtains.
Next up is my apparent love of toile + wood.
The photo on the left was from the pilot of Secrets From a Stylist (9 years ago) and the right was a house we finished 2 years ago. They both were in traditional-style homes and my love of black and white toile lives on. I mixed both of them with gunmetal modern pieces (the dining table on left, the nightstand on right). They both have wood elements (chairs, lamps) and they both have a casual element to them.
I think one of the biggest “OH RIGHT” moments is Ian’s house, in comparison to our house last year. They are both English Tudors with bookshelves. Turns out it’s not just the house, it’s the mixing of styles and the elements that help tell that story (Persian rug, trunks, mid-century style chairs, a lot of light, etc).
Same houses, different angles, same(ish) vibe. Oh, and the “over the coffee table” shot is always popular. It’s like a red carpet pose you’ve come to expect but sometimes it really looks the same as posts from the past, but we accept it anyway.
Ten years ago, I designed the space on the left (for Secrets From a Stylist) and 2 years ago, myself (with the design team) designed the space on the right. Navy velvet sofa, wood accents, hits of green and all with a casual nature.
I suppose I’ll never not be in a “navy wall, metal architectural lamp, greenery and quirk” phase. On the left is 6 years ago, on the right is 2 years ago. I know that 4 years doesn’t seem like that much of a difference but these days, due to digital media, 4 years is like 94 years in cat years. It’s exponentially longer than it used to be and “trends” and vibes change so drastically from year to year (sometimes month to month, sadly).
The bedroom on the left was in 2010, the one on the right last year. Goes to show I’m still into quiet bedrooms, layered with textures, in neutrals but with some flower.
I like shelves. I like styling. I like putting my “stuff” all over shelves. I’ve been putting “stuff” all over shelves for years. You can see the similarities here with my layering, footed vessels, books, leaning art, some whimsy, etc…I have a subconscious formula. Either of these could be 2010 or 2019 but I love them both.
As I continue to self-reflect and analyze what I love and who I want to be stylistically, I’m loving seeing that some things haven’t changed. Or at least they change less than I thought they did. Maybe it means that I’m predictable. Or maybe it means I actually do have a style.
I suppose if my style is “stuff” then I’ll be okay with that. After all, I do like a lot of stuff.
What about you? Are you pro-or anti-“stuff”? What elements do you find yourself going to again and again, year after year, despite what’s “trendy”?