My husband won’t let me decorate our home: who should decorate the house?

And how to fix it, now!

“My husband won’t let me decorate our home,” a friend said to me over coffee.

Time and time again I’ve heard this from my friends; it’s anything but uncommon for couples to have different ideas about decorating.

Read more: arguing about decorating (and how to stop)

My partner and I had the same issue; we’re both colour-lovers, but he didn’t want to do anything too drastic.

Lots of buyers, especially first time buyers, are concerned about selling their house on – will someone else want to live here when we’re done with it? Which is exactly what was on my husband’s mind.

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Stonewash blue paint Dulux

Dulux tough stonewash blue – Homebase £25

Brass towel ring

Cristal brass pearl towel ring – Anthropologie £38

So what did we do about it? Well, we compromised. Any permanent feature was a ‘normal’ colour – we installed a white kitchen and a white bathroom suite, but anything that was easy to change (i.e. re-paint) was fair game.

As we started to decorate, and my vision came to life, he gained more trust in my interior decisions; then I was able add a few extra touches of personality – like a pink tap and green grouting.

Steps to take when your husband won’t let you decorate your home

  • Compromise is really important, you need to meet in the middle, somewhere you can both be happy.
  • I’ve mentioned this before, but making a mood board together can be useful; you can pick up on any schemes you both like.
  • To make things easier, why not make the planning stage something you’re both involved in. Make it exciting, have a meeting over a hot drink in a cafe, somewhere that’s a neutral ground.
White lamp urban outfitters floor lamp  - quirky

Shana floor lamp – Urban Outfitters £249

  • Mapping it all out will help you both see how it’s going to look when it’s finished, therefore, there won’t be any nasty surprises. This will build trust between you both when it comes to decorating and have a knock on effect next time.
  • You want to make sure you both feel heard when it comes to decorating ideas, give each other a chance to put forward your own opinions. Listening is key.
  • Take it step-by-step, start with one room and see how that goes, see how you both feel about it, or start with things you can easily change, like paint colours.
Sunday Soul Beige Paint Coat Paints

Coat paint sunday soul – John Lewis from £49

Read more: anxiety about buying a house with a partner

My husband wont let me decorate pink room
photo: Beazy

Who should decorate the house, husband or wife?

You might be wondering who should decorate your house; well, there are no set rules. Decorating is a skill most people can pick up, it’s all about having the confidence (and the time) to go for it.

Personally, I enjoy decorating much more than my husband and I enjoy experimenting so in our house it’s usually me. However, if it’s something to do with general house maintenance then we both chip in together.

However, if neither of you are up to the task or it’s causing world war three, then you can hire a professional to help you.

My husband won't let me decorate our home: who should decorate the house?

Dulux Heritage sage green – Homebase £35.20

My husband won’t let me make any decisions:

According to Tony Robbins, there are three key principles to decision making with your partner: communication, trustworthiness and respect.

Making lots of decisions separately in your relationship can cause it to suffer, so working on something like decorating could be beneficial to your marriage in the long run.

My husband won't let me decorate our home: who should decorate the house?

Coat paint low salt – John Lewis from £49

Why is it important to decorate your home?

Being in spaces we love has a huge impact on our mental wellbeing, your home should work for you and bring you joy.

My husband won't let me decorate our home: who should decorate the house?

Daisy scallop marble green table lamp – Oliver Bonas £139.50

My husband won't let me decorate our home: who should decorate the house?

Bluebell footstool in clay – £460

how do you compromise house decor?

To compromise on home decor you want to combine both of your tastes together. The best way to do this is to begin with a neutral background and then add in things that reflect both of your personalities, like works of art.

If you can’t reach a compromise alone then you could ask a friend to help or hire a decorator – someone to act as a voice of reason and make sure you end up with a space you’re both really happy with.

red striped cushion

Sanderson Pinetum stripe cushion – John Lewis

White clothes rail

Metal clothes rail – John Lewis £38

Gingham pet bed – John Lewis from £32

Eleanor Bowmer mug

Eleanor Bowmer mug – John Lewis £11.95

In summary:

  • Compromise.
  • Hear each other out properly.
  • Start with a small area first to gain trust in ‘the vision’.
  • Use a mood-board to showcase each others ideas and highlight any similarities in your tastes.
  • Take it step by step
  • Hire a decorator so neither one of you feels as though they’re taking over.
  • Use a neutral background.
  • Combine your taste by adding in works of art you’ve both picked seperately.
  • If possible, have free reign over your own spaces like your office or walk in wardrobe.

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