Arguing about decorating (and how to stop)

Arguing about decorating? Join the club.

Unless you’re a saint or just unbelievably chilled out, then it can be very hard to keep the peace when you and your partner are decorating. 

Disclaimer: I’m not a therapist in any shape or form, but speaking from experience, there is no two ways about it, decorating can be tiring and stressful; everywhere gets messy, it’s very physical and to top it all off, decorating styles can divide opinion  – the perfect breeding ground for an argument. 

Well, first things first: it’s normal to argue, especially arguing about decorating. During our house renovation, I’ll be the first to admit me and my partner had some of the most ~stupid~ arguments; usually at the very end of a long day when we were tidying up. 

arguing about decorating pink floorboards
photo: @lindsey_isla

It’s rarely going to be a plain sailing experience, but learning to compromise and getting through it together can help build a really strong relationship. 

My partner and I are arguing about decorating because we have different decorating styles – what should we do? 

It’s a conversation I often have with my friends – they want to paint their house like a rainbow and their partner does not. It’s tempting to feel like we could gather round and persuade them, however, if you and your partner have different ideas then I wouldn’t bring anyone else into it – you don’t want them to feel ganged up on or make them feel defensive and embarrassed. 

Creating individual moodboards (Pinterest is a really great app for this) and presenting them to one another can help you to see each other’s vision. In turn, you can spot any similarities and come to a compromise.

Delegating different rooms or spaces can also be a good idea. My partner and I designed our own studios exactly how we wanted, but we compromised in the rest of the house.  

Learn when to stop arguing about decorating

Although arguing can be normal and healthy, we’re not always going to agree on everything, you don’t want it to escalate too far. We’ve been known to start bickering about one thing and end up arguing about something completely different. In this instance, it’s best to take some time out, even use a safe word until you can both calm down and discuss at a later date when you’re feeling less volatile. 

Why is decorating so important? 

There is nothing better than putting your stamp on a place; it makes a house feel like your home and it can add value. Decorating can also improve your overall mood and wellbeing. Now our house is ‘finished’ I can say, hand on heart, the stress was totally worth it – we now have a space that works for us and reflects our personalities.  

arguing about decorating blue stripes in studio
photo: @lindsey_isla

Red more: how often should I redecorate?

Does home decor affect mental health? 

There is evidence to suggest that decor can have a positive effect on your mental wellbeing; painting with certain colours can promote good sleep, increase creativity or even make you feel happier. 

Does home decor affect house value? 

Great decor can add value to your home so it’s worth doing it and it’s worth doing it well.If you don’t think you’re up to the task then you can hire a professional to help you; you’ll have a beautiful space to live in and it’ll be worth it in the long run when you come to sell. 

Who should decorate the house? 

When we moved into our first home I was determined to get my hands dirty, I wanted to be able to do it all myself. However, not everyone has the passion or the time to do this so you can get a decorator or a handy man to help you. There are no rules here, just whatever suits you the most. 

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