Marriage Mergers

July 23, 2009 by Kenmore

Eric marriage merger

When you start combining furniture from different homes, you might find it challenging to create a uniform style. But I think you can achieve a comfortable look by blending your furnishings and making a few creative adjustments.

Mix and match

Mix items to find new groupings that accent each other well. Use these groupings throughout your home for an eclectic look that flows consistently through your space.

Complementary coordinates

I find that complementary colors – those on opposite sides of the color wheel – are an easy way to coordinate. Pair reds with greens, purples with yellows and blues with oranges. Think royal purple with gold, or watermelon pink and spring green. Or pair a punchy hue like yellow with a neutral tone like gray to add a pop of color to a neutral room.

Save your memories

I like to contain all my personal mementos in one area to avoid overkill. So consider grouping photos and souvenirs from both your pasts on a bookshelf.

Store more

Storage solutions become extra important when two households are blended into one.

  • Closets – Divide your wardrobes into sections for each season and assign each person a specific hanger color to keep clothes organized.
  • Cabinets – If you need additional space in cabinets, add expanding or stackable shelves for all the dishes or glassware that comes with coupled living.

Manage messages

Keep a message board in the kitchen to update one another on events and important dates. I love message centers with a clever twist, like a backsplash painted with chalkboard paint.

Make room for baby

Consider these designer tricks to make space for a new baby.

  • Chic nursery: High style and design trends have entered the world of baby products. Look for baby gates, cribs and playpens in natural tones that can be personalized with a little paint to match home décor.
  • Creating storage: Little ones can require a surprising amount of storage! When I work with clients, I suggest stylish options like old cookie tins, bins with cushioned tops that double as seating, or wall hooks with colorful cotton hobo sacks.

Maintain the master bedroom

Welcoming a new family member can turn your home upside-down, but don’t let the chaos affect your bedroom. Maintain its serenity through soft fabrics and soothing hues like blues, greens, tans and whites. Use dark neutrals like browns and black for contrasting accents.

Shift to sturdy fabrics

As tiny as they are, babies are hard on fabrics and delicate furniture. Move antiques and finer fabrics to a room reserved for more formal occasions. Choose furniture made with soft, washable cottons. Wool or silk rugs are a good choice when you have little ones crawling on the floor.

Bring the old in with the new

Nursery furniture doesn’t need to be brand new. You can add a changing pad to the top of an existing dresser to create a changing table, for example. I also love the idea of a cushy lounge chair and ottoman instead of a rocking chair.

My rules for nursery design

  • Keep the décor simple and natural.
  • Two-toned wall colors, small geometric patterns and soft lighting work well to create a soothing, child-friendly environment.
  • Look for things that can grow with your child. Some cribs can convert to a toddler bed and then a twin bed.

What are your biggest challenges when merging styles and furniture?


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