Moving In Together: Figuring Out The Design Details

So you have taken the big step and decided to move in together, but you both had your own fully furnished apartment stock full of great pieces and opposing decorating styles. What do you do? How do you create a new harmonious abode for two where you both feel at home? Here are our tips.

Start with a purge | Take inventory

Begin by taking any items that the two of you can’t agree upon and ranking them in order from 1 to 10 in terms oh how attached you are to that piece. This will quickly reveal which items you each can’t live without. The ones at the bottom of the list can easily be tossed and then comes the compromises. This is the key to any happy home and relationship. Attention men, this is when you should be prepared to throw out any items your partner just cannot stand, your life will be easier in the end, trust us.


Sometimes partners move in together and discover they have similar taste in interiors, often though, this is not the case. If you find that you and your partner identify with very different styles, opt for a more eclectic approach to your interiors. It’s not worth the impeding battle to convince your partner to change his or her own taste just to maintain your interior aesthetic. And besides, eclectic is de rigueur these days in design.

Keep calm and colour co-ordinate

One of the easiest ways to unite two disparate styles is with colour. Begin by choosing one colour or shade to dominate each room, and let the others become accents. For example, if your chosen living sofa is gray but she has a bright yellow side chair, paint the walls gray and opt for some throw pillows that combine the two colours. To avoid an overly busy space, freely add in neutrals.

Never be afraid to double up

There is a high probability that you will end up with some multiples but embrace them. Too many dining rooms chairs? Don’t be scared to mix them; use the extra chairs as bedside tables. Two different coffee tables? Considering using them both; try layering them to create a more unique coffee table option.

Mix materials

You want a space that feels genuine and authentic; you want a space that reflects the both of you. Combine both of your personalities: a balanced combination of hard and soft. A unique combination of various materials and textures will actually help unite both of your individual contributions to your new home’s design. The old adage is true, variety is the spice of life and your relationship (and home).

Combine collections

One of the tricks to uniting your individual collections of books, accessories, and mementos is to combine them in a bookcase or display cabinet. Also, considering combining your collections of photographs and artwork into one large gallery wall. If you are hesitant about combining different frames, consider painting them all one colour.

Embrace asymmetry

Things don’t have to be symmetrical. For example, when you don’t have matching bedside tables like your parents and grandparents did, don’t worry about it. Mixing is much more modern, and besides who wants a bedroom like their grandparents? How un-sexy would that be?

Go shopping together

Now it is time to go shopping, but make sure you do it together. Make a Saturday out of it, grab a great brunch and then hit the local design neighborhood or even try a local flea market. Doing this together will make it easier to make more levelheaded decisions about furniture purchases and prevent future fights.

Back to basics for the gap

Even when you combine two apartments, you may still end up with gaps. Fill those design gaps with basics: classic pieces with timeless shapes and materials; you want those pieces to blend in. Just remember, shop for them together and make it fun.

Share control

Sometimes, no matter how hard you try, your styles might never be a perfect match but the solution is not a break-up. A great option is to allow each person at least one room or space where they can make all the decisions. This ensures each one of you still has a sense of control over their space, and not every room turns into the product of a total compromise where neither of you feels satisfied.

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