The newlywed period isn’t just about romance and adventure: it is also a critical time to set traditions that last all throughout your marriage. This is also the marriage defining time of designing your shared living space.
If you never lived with your spouse before marriage, the idea of sharing and changing your home may seem stressful, but it can be a process that bonds you even more with him. You just need to know how to cooperate with your partner to make the experience liberating and enjoyable.
Decorate Based on Feelings, Not Looks
Throw out that home design book that you covet. Trying to make your place look just like Jennifer Aniston’s home won’t make either you or your spouse happy. Instead it creates a frustrating experience. Don’t worry so much about the look of your interior: focus on the feel of it. Think about the types of moods that you want to emulate with each room.
Maybe you want the living room to feel inviting and warm, the bedroom passionate and wild, and the guest room comfy and serene. Discuss with your husband each room, and then figure out how to create a certain vibe in every one.
What’s Yours is Mine, What’s Mine is Yours
Find a way to incorporate both of your styles into the home. You both should be actively contributing to the design decisions. Go shopping for new furniture together, but keep a few pieces from your old home that are easy to incorporate into your new place. Don’t focus on erasing either of your old lives and styles, but on blending them in a cohesive manner.
Some Things Gotta Go
Write a list of all the things that you just can’t allow in your new living space. Maybe he has a really ugly chair that he wants to bring into the home. Discuss with him why you don’t want to display it in your living room. Make sure that he makes his own list of items to veto from your things. Neither of you have to toss your beloved items in the trash, but be willing to put it in storage, or donate to a friend in need or a nearby thrift store.
Get Your Own Space
Even the happiest couples need a space of their own, even if only to decompress. You both should pick a room in the home–not any common areas like the living room or dining room–that’s completely your own. You have the freedom to decorate and add whatever you want to the space. Turn the attic into a meditation room, or the garage into an entertainment center. Go wild. This is your space and you’re free to use it how you see fit, without any input or judgment from him.
Make it a Love Nest
No matter how you decide to decorate the home, personalize it. Fill your home with pictures of your relationship. Splurge a little on fancy Zales’ engraved picture frames (use Zales’ Groupon coupons to not splurge too much). Just make the home the ultimate display of your love for one another by adding pictures, quotes, and whatever else shows how madly in love you are with your spouse.