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To match or not to match…that is the Question

Triangular dining table on top of circular area rug with elongated demi-lune


Welcome to my first post - well…not really, but it is the first one to usher in a river of ideas, observations and information you can take to the bank about integrating thoughtful design into all aspects of home, work and a social life. Living and working in Silicon Valley is ‘Oh so cool’ lately for the obvious reasons - that is is a 24/7 place where ideas turn into products and services almost overnight. Why? People here are so nurturing and helpful that one almost can’t fail. Even failure is embraced as a step to success.


The other reason it is easy for Silicon Valley to be‘cool’is the diversity of the population, which for the most part is seen as an asset to local communities. Across these different culture sand backgrounds, one question I hear as an interior designer almost universally is “Shouldn’t this match that?”“Shouldn’t we match all of the bathroom vanity cabinets and match those to the kitchen cabinets too?” Shouldn’t the bed linens be all a single color?”Shouldn’t the pillows match the draperies?” “Shouldn’t the art match the sofa fabric”? (Aw, c’mon….really?) What is everyone so afraid of? A little‘coordination’ never hurt anyone.


Taking it a step further, the concept of ‘mix and match’ is a lot of fun. There is only one secret to achieving a great mix in an environment - relaxing. Just relax and have fun. The best interior designers know this -and it is their trademark…like the element of surprise.            



The unexpected makes something more

special - more precious                                                             


Gordon Huether’s 'Buttoned-Up' mannequins don't stand a chance next to

Ms. Flower Power and vice-versa.





There is a balance to it. Just like too much of the same bland color or material is a big bore, on the opposite side is too much of a good thing. A colorful button or mosaic sculpture needs to live in some negative space. A‘matching’ dress or furnishings showing the same bright flower print is just trying too hard and takes the beauty and interest away from both.

Is placement important? Very much so. The safe approach is to align furniture pieces along a wall. Is that to reinforce the fact that a room is a square or rectangle? What is it about people who have to have everything lined up perfectly? There isn’t a straight line in nature! Break up the volume of a space by placing a large piece of furniture like a dining table at a 45 degree
angle to the walls - and see the magic. The eye is now continuing around the space - not stopping in the corners. Think about coordinating and creating volumes in a space for a more dynamic, interesting vibe. Mostly, just relax.













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