Looking for Contrast

I said yesterday that I was going to post my “plan” for our entire house.

And I am, but it may be different than what you expect.

I’ve heard of people who find one painting or one thing that will inspire their entire home.  And there is absolutely nothing wrong with that.  I do think it creates a cohesive home that really flows together, which is so important.

But for me,  I realized that what I’m looking for in this next house is contrast.

That’s a bit of a complex design plan to explain, but I’m going to try.

I talked recently about my budding design style that is starting to break out of just country/rustic.  I think it’s always been more this way judging by my Pinterest boards and pins from a while ago, but I was stuck in labeling my design style.

As I’m really starting to evaluate images and things that I like regardless of their style, I’m realizing that what I really love is contrast.  I like an eclectic mix of things.

In this next house, I’m hoping to find some of all of these elements in every room: feminine with masculine, rustic with sparkly, old with new (vintage with modern, if you will), black with white, gold with silver.

I used to think that if you had something silver in the room, throw out all the gold.

If I had a rustic wood table, the chairs needed to match, etc.

And again, nothing wrong with that…if that’s what you like.  For me, I just don’t anymore.  I want it all mixed up 🙂

I went to my trusty old friend, Pinterest, to find some of my favorite images to show these contrasts I’m talking about.  And I was surprised (though I shouldn’t have been because I LOVE them) that all images I chose are from Milk and Honey home.  This post really should be called “Ode to Milk and Honey.”

Milk and Honey Home

They’re so good at eclectic country mix with just enough modern.  I firmly believe that everyone’s style is different, but they really have the closest match to what I consider “my style” that I’ve found.

They recently stepped back from blogging to focus more on their design business and I was seriously devastated.  I loved seeing their work everyday!

But anyway, I’m off topic…

To achieve contrasts and mix in our house, I’m starting with a country-ish white base (are you surprised?!).  We’re bringing in texture: lots and lots of board and batten, beadboard, and barn wood.

board and batten

And some dark stained wood beams.  Look, contrast already!

White walls wood beams

Love the look of floor to ceiling board and batten with the beams.

board and batten2

We’re doing something like this in our main living areas – yay!  I’ve always wanted board and batten.

So, most walls in our home will be white.  I’m not saying “all” yet, but most.  Recently, my husband and I were talking about something totally unrelated and he stopped mid-sentence and said, “Every wall in this house is going to be white, isn’t it?” 

I said, “Maybe not everyone…” my fingers might’ve been crossed behind my back.  Thankfully, he’s pretty okay with it.  Love him.

So, are you picturing it?  Gorgeous, white, textured base?

Perfect for layering on lots and lots of contrasting gorgeousness.

Gold, silver, galvanized all in one room? Yes.


And that chunky masculine table with modern lines and the very feminine/sparkly light fixture? Yes.  Notice the sparkly sequin pillow in the chair…I already have a gold one just like it waiting on it’s new home.

Feminine ruffles and chandy with dark wood table, old chippy chairs and major modern ones? Uh huh.

mix of modern and rustic

We’re starting to speak my love language.

Chippy, textured chair with a sleek modern table all against white board and batten? Heck yes.

old and new

Julie from Milk and Honey has been very vocal (as I have) about her professed love of white.  But lately, they’ve been experimenting with adding in some serious dark.

I actually love these dark rooms she’s created recently.


black with white

Major dark and light contrast.  Maybe there’s a dark room in my future? 

I could talk an entire post about all of the gorgeous contrast and mix of styles in these two images, but I know you can pick it all out.

That’s why I love them so much.  It feels like absolutely any object could fit in every room.  They make it work and don’t live by design rules.

I’m hoping for rooms just like that…anything goes, as long as it makes our design hearts sing.


I know this may not have been the clear, concise, and easily followed design plan you were hoping for, but I gave you a list at least, right?

Old, modern, chippy, sleek, black, white, gold, silver, galvanized, masculine, rustic, feminine, sparkly.

Okay, it’s complicated.  But I sure do love the future rooms this list is bringing to my mind…

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Love them, too! It is so hard to try and sum up your style with words – I wouldn’t know where to start! But these pictures totally bring to life what you mean with “contrast”. Can’t wait for the progress, and congrats that demo has officially begun!

Thank you, Jillian! We are so excited! It’s so fun to come home and see progress. I know that it’ll start feeling long at some point because part of me is already itching for this fun part – decorating the rooms! But we’ll get there. Can’t wait to chat about your living room!

Great blog! Our mutual friend, Mandy Waters, told me about it. Love your old house ans I bet this one will be just as cute. My hubby and I met at Furman, too.

Love all those rooms! I’ve been dying to add some beams and board & batten to my home. Eagerly following your renovation!

Thank you, Gina! It’s so amazing to me what a little wood, white or stained, can do! I’m excited 🙂