How to Find Your Style

If you’re ever questioning how to find your style, just simply look at what you like. But look at all the things you like all together, so you get one picture view. Before Pinterest, these might have been pages torn out of magazines, all laid out on a table.

1. Now with Pinterest, make a style board. 

As an example, go see my “Chicago Home – Decoration Inspiration *That I’m Serious About Doing* board. Ha ha. I’m serious about doing about 1,000 things! Need a bigger house. Lately I’ve obviously been into rugs. But there’s also paint colors, patterned furniture, decor accessories, fabrics, and lighting. Anything that I thought I’d truly want to live with in the house. There are definite style preferences there. You may or may not like my style. But if you collect a pin board like this too, your style will become obvious.

When you pin, don’t worry about money! You are not buying this stuff. There’s no credit card debt. They are only pins and pins are free. If you like it, pin it. This is only about finding your style. So don’t worry about prices. If you find you have taste above your income, no big deal, you can always find lower-price substitutes.

2. Scroll through your board and pull out your favorite pictures.

Don’t think too much. Go with your gut. What catches your eye and makes your heart beat a little faster? Hold back from second-guessing yourself. If your eye lingers on something a little longer, copy it or print it.

3. Put all  your pictures together. Your choices will show you your style.

It’s really simple. But you have to pull these pictures out and put them all together. Either print them on paper, or put them in Photoshop or a Word doc. Don’t try to put the total picture together only in your head. You won’t be able to literally “see” the style.

Put the pictures in a moodboard, or print them and lay them out on the floor or table. You should see some things the photos have in common.

A sample “how to find your style” moodboard: 

I followed the simple steps above and here’s my result. I shamelessly put some really expensive stuff on this moodboard. It’s not like I’m buying it. The rug is $47,000 after all! There is nothing wrong with liking it.

Nomadic Decorator Moodboard

As I’ve written about before, I’ve diagnosed my style as “Natural Nomadic Luxe.” Give your style a name that describes what you see. My style is global with some luxury like silks and gold, it’s pattern-full, with natural colors.

It’s an eclectic and elegant mix with things from different countries and cultures. It’s like an elegant bohemian look. Here is what’s on this global style moodboard:

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Shhhhh … It’s for Adults Only – Adult Coloring Books

My dad sent an email a few months ago that said, “you won’t BELIEVE what your mom is doing!”

“What what WHAT?!” I said.

“She’s coloring in a coloring book!”

Oh. I thought it was gonna be something like, she’s dancing around in her underwear to a Shaun Cassidy album!

The next day I was in O’Hare airport and saw a big display of adult coloring books. Two signs in two days was enough evidence of a trend, no need to see a third sign on a third day. My parents caught this trend before I did! The New Yorker wrote about the trend, giving it sure-fire “adult credibility.”

Apparently it bothers people to see line drawings that aren’t colored in, so there’s a compulsion to fill them in. I understand. Look at this, how can you leave this scene as it is?

Johanna Basford Enchanted Forest

That is an Enchanted Forest by Johanna Basford. According to Slate, her coloring books for adults have sold more than 1.5 million copies. Oh boy. Like I need another visual hobby!

And like many hobbies, it has benefits beyond making something pretty. It may reduce stress, and people say it feels good. Definitely people are drawn to the drawings (heh heh heh). According to Psychology Today a few months ago, five of the top 30 books on Amazon were adult coloring books! (Looks like that Psychology Today writer doesn’t like the adult coloring books but not everyone wants to get into meditation, and not everyone can draw these scenes from scratch. Let people have their fun!)

Here are some popular adult coloring books. There’s the Secret Garden by Johanna Basford:

Secret Garden Coloring Book by Johanna Basford

Here’s a coloring book with designs inspired by henna and mandalas:

Coloring book with henna and mandala designs

How about a book full of stress relieving patterns? We could all use some of that:

Stress Relieving Adult Coloring Book

Once you’ve chosen your coloring book(s), you need pencils and pens! Let’s add some color. Buy all the colors! Here’s a few “crowd sourced” best sellers on Amazon:

Sargent Art 50 Colored Pencils

Sargent Art Colored Pencils for Adult Coloring Books

Prismacolor Premier 48 Colored Pencils

Prismacolor Colored Pencils for Adult Coloring Books

Or you can get 24 Prismacolor colored pencils if you don’t need 48 colors. And of course you need a pencil sharpener!

Prismacolor Pencils and Pencil Sharpener

So … go ahead, be like a kid again and even color outside the lines if you want. This is a great project to do on a winter day or a rainy summer day with the kids too — a coloring book for them, a coloring book for you!

This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a small percentage of compensation at no cost to you if you purchase after clicking the link. I post affiliate links when I have purchased from the company or used the product, and I can confidently share the company or product. For more info, see  Disclosures & Policies.


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Painted Moroccan Tables

I’m painting a Moroccan table right now (FINALLY doing the project posted about here), and while researching I found some painted Moroccan tables that are too good to not share. Mine will be very different than these, but these are pretty and colorful and so boho chic …

Bohemian Chic Painted Moroccan Tables



  1.  Treasures of Morocco on eBay
  2. Fikra
  3. Fikra
  4. Moroccan Accents on Etsy
  5. Lalhaveli-us on eBay

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Happy 5th Birthday, Nomadic Decorator!

Five years ago there were dreams.

Five years ago there was a different, dreamy blog name (one I later admitted I didn’t even know how to pronounce).

Since then, there have been lots of forks in the roads, and changes in those dreams. That happens in life. If you’ve been following along recently, you know things are finally starting to happen again in India.

The one thing that’s remained the same here is sharing of gorgeous photos. Today I honor the Nomadic Decorator blog with favorite inspiration photos shared over the years. Let’s celebrate with eye candy …

There was the time I pleaded for Cher to adopt me so I could live here, in her Indian Fantasy home. Many elements here inspire me for the India pied-a-terre:

Cher Indian Fantasy Home

The carved wood, the antiques, meditative patterns, soothing natural palette. (And there was the time I met the designer of this place – Martyn Lawrence Bullard! I unfortunately did not ask him any smart, substantive questions about interior design as I should have; I was a bit starstruck.)

I was dreaming recently about massive double Chinese storage cabinets. They’d be great in the India apartment foyer and play well with the Indian teak furniture. Really big, like these Chinese cabinets I saw at Primitive in Chicago:

Chinese Cabinet at Primitive

That’s so much more interesting than the modern MDF wardrobe cabinets.

I like a neutral pattern mix, like these from Robert Allen I shared a few years ago in a post about decorating a South Indian country courtyard house:

Robert Allen Fabrics

There was this old crumbling texture, from the time I strolled through the real South Indian country village where I fantasized about the traditional courtyard houses there:

Osur Village in South India

I like the various dilapidated textures from the wood, stone and terra cotta roof tiles.

In stark contrast to the visit to a rural Indian village, I’ve also visited the Royal Mansour in Marrakech, where the wealthy and famous stay. The pattern play there was so inspiring! Moroccan style is very much inspiring me for our India apartment’s design. This isn’t my photo, because it was night and dark when we visited and mine are grainy. I think this is from the Royal Mansour’s website:

Royal Mansour Moroccan Tile Pattern Play

Occasionally I do a post focused on a color. And in a post about the color olive, I shared this photo from Envers du Decor. Love the combo of elements here from different cultures:

Culture Blend

Oh there have been so many inspiring photos over the years. I should find a way to make more visual links to older posts.  The above photos capture what’s sticking with me now, and all together, they show a style. Actually, it’s a style that’s nomadic — a mix of cultures. Influenced by the elegant and the rustic. Definitely more neutral, because I find that peaceful.

Hopefully the real India pied-a-terre, as we continue to work on it, will eventually do justice to the blog! Thank you for following along, I know some of you have been here for quite awhile and I hope it’s been inspiring to you too!

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