Studio Remodel (Week No. 2): Curating Interior Inspiration


I’m a huge fan of mood boards. In fact, we joke at home that I can’t even butter my toast without creating a mood board for it first. ;) I’m all about having a vision for where you’re headed. 

Kidding aside, last week I recapped all that’s gone into the studio remodel to get it to the place that it is now. Much of that was resurfacing floors and walls, but this week, I thought it’d be fun to walk you through my process of designing the interior.

Some would call this decorating, but I think it goes so much deeper than that. Design plays an important role, balancing both form and function (especially in a work space!). 

While I branched out from this process slightly in our Airbnb remodel to allow for thrift store and antique finds, I’m returning to it here in the studio as a way to bring this project to completion on a shorter timeframe. (I want this baby to be finished!) 

It’s also worth noting that although a different medium, I use a very similar process to create mood boards in my branding and design work, too. Curating inspiration like this allows me to pinpoint the connections and overlaps in what it is that I’m drawn to. By doing that, I’m able to bring those same elements into my own design.

I’ve compiled my own collection of inspiration images below, along with what it was that I was responding to in each. After the jump I walk you through my mood board curation process step-by-step so that you can use these same strategies in your own spaces. So let’s dive in, shall we?

The Kinfolk Home . via  Apartment34

The Kinfolk Home . via Apartment34


Wooden Floors & Desk Coupled w/ Black window trim



Minimal Black & White Artwork

Silke Bonde x Nordic Summer . via  BLOGMILK

Silke Bonde x Nordic Summer . via BLOGMILK


Mix of Shapes & Textures
w/ Open Shelving

Clerkenwell London  . photography by Ed Reeve . via  The Design Chaser

Clerkenwell London . photography by Ed Reeve . via The Design Chaser

Pin Board & Wall Storage

via  Casework

Wicker Baskets & Texture


Cork, Kraft, Wood & Wovens

via  MyDomaine  . photography by  Angus Fergusson

via MyDomaine . photography by Angus Fergusson


The Mood Board Process

Guiding words for look & feel —
At the start of a branding project, I do a deep dive in defining a business’s ideal audience to determine how the brand should look and feel to appeal to those buying their product or service. A similar idea applies here. It’s important to have a basic idea of how you want a space to look and feel. 

I think it’s helpful to pick three words. For example, for me those words were light, minimal, and textural. These words can always shift later on as the design begins to evolve, but it’s helpful to have some idea of how you want to feel in a space. Masculine and moody is going to look wayyyy different than feminine and airy.

Pin, pin, pin —
Next, I head over to Pinterest to gather my inspiration. I start to collect images that I’m drawn to — pinning anything from entire rooms that I’m inspired by to small details such as vases that are interesting in color or texture. I try to cast a wide net and fight the urge to edit things down too quickly (there will be time for that later!).

Look for related pins —
My favorite feature on Pinterest is the “Related Pins” section. If I click on a pin from my board to enlarge it and then scroll down, I see images with a similar look. This is great if I have one image that I've fallen in love with, but I'm having a hard time finding others of a similar aesthetic. I keep pinning those finds!

Look for the overlap —
Now that I’ve collected all of my inspiration, I’m probably getting a good feel for what it is that I like. For my studio pin board, I noticed that I was pinning a lot minimal spaces with white walls and warmer wooden accents. The nice part of this visual exercise is that it makes those connections very apparent.

Edit it down —
Now that I’ve begun to notice these consistencies, I start to edit it down. Sometimes I do this by printing my images and shuffling them around, pulling a few out until they all start to look visually consistent. Other times, I simply open up a blank Photoshop document and push them around. I say do what works best for you! The goal is to have a handful of images to reference rather than the large number that you started with. 

Design for the space that you have —
In the past, I’ve talked about how easy it is to find myself down the Pinterest rabbit hole, drawn in by perfectly styled rooms, only to come to the realization that the space I have looks nothing like the space I’ve pinned. Which leads me to…

Hone in on the details —
What is it exactly that I like about that space? Is it the wall color? The floor color? The artwork? The bookcase? Getting specific about what it is that I’m responding to helps me to bring similar elements into my own space. Stay tuned as I start to shop and pull it all together!