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Libby Langdon's Tips for Finding Your Design Inspiration

Learn how Libby finds her design inspiration here!

Where to begin? -- People often ask me where I get my design inspirations because they are not sure where to begin themselves. It can be overwhelming when you're starting from scratch. I start with the individual whose home I'm designing. I ask them questions about their hobbies, interests, and favorite colors, and that's the springboard and magic of a custom design. If someone loves the beach, then I know they'll be happy in a room with colors of tans, sand, soft blue, creams and pale aqua. If someone loves an all things Asian, they'll love colors of red, black, cream and gold.

Subtle Suggestions -- Sometimes people will even leave me hints about what they really want their space to look like. One client had a floral chintz sofa and soft pale colors on all the walls. But, hanging up on the wall all by itself, was the most beautiful Moroccan platter with dark rich colors in eggplant, gold, pink, and turquoise. I knew she'd hung it in such an important place because she really wanted a room with a Moroccan feel. I used the platter as the inspiration for my design and it's a room she now adores.

Be inspired! -- You can use all sorts of things as inspiration for the design of your space, such as a necklace, favorite shirt, memorable vacation, cherished movie, cool hotel room: the possibilities are endless. If you still need a little help getting started, here are some of my design themes and related colors to inspire you.

Tans, creams, caramel, pale blue and aqua. Consider soft blue on the walls and tan upholstered sofas and chairs, white end tables and white woodwork.

Yellow, brown, green and coral. Paint the walls yellow; use a sage green for the upholstered pieces, mix in some patterned drapes and accessories, and use brown tables and woodwork.

Rust, black, tan and cream. Paint the walls a rich rust/russet color; use black accessories and natural stained woodwork, keep it light with soft creams on the furniture and floor.

Hip Hotel:
Black, tan, chocolate brown, gray, silver, cream. Paint one wall a rich brown; bring in tan and cream furniture, use high gloss finishes and silver/chrome accents on tables.

Red, black, gold, cream. Paint one wall red and the other walls a soft tan; use light cream upholstered furniture, and black wood accent tables and ottomans.

Tans, turquoise, terracotta, cream. Paint the walls a soft tan; use cream upholstered furniture, turquoise and terracotta accents, and rich stained wood pieces.

Big City: 
Gray, Cream, Black and silver. Paint one wall a rich dark gray; use light creamy upholstered furniture, black tables, steel and silver accent pieces, and lots of black and white photographs.

Eggplant, gold, hot pink, turquoise and chocolate brown. Paint one wall a rich dark eggplant and paint the other walls a soft golden tan; use tan upholstered furniture, bright pink and turquoise accents and accessories, and dark stained wood pieces.

Lime green, tan, chocolate brown and cream. Paint one wall chocolate brown; use light cream upholstered furniture, lots of green plants, accessories and accents, as well as dark stained tables and furniture pieces.

Shabby Chic: 
Pale blue, soft rose, white and silver. Keep the walls bright white and bring in lots of white painted furniture; use a soft cotton patterned fabric on the upholstered pieces and white and silver accessories.

French Country: 
Yellow, black, red and cream. Paint the walls a soft yellow; use cream upholstered furniture with black wrought iron and red accents, and dark stained woodwork.

Tans, cream, brown and black. Paint the walls tan; use cream upholstered furniture, animal patterned fabrics for pillows and small items like ottomans, dark stained wood and black iron accents.

Tan, hunter green, cream, and brown. Paint one wall a dark hunter green and paint the other walls a soft tan; use light colored upholstery pieces and dark stained wood tables and shelves – mix in some brass accessories.

Navy Blue, cream, tan and gray. Paint one wall navy blue and paint the other walls a soft tan; use cream or tan upholstered furniture, white painted wood work and gray accents.

Art Gallery: 
Tan, cream, silver and black. Paint the walls a soft tan; use all white upholstery furniture, silver tables and shelving with black frames and accents.
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