The Number One Question You Should Be Asking Before Decorating Your Home

Yesterday, I asked a question in an Instagram post. I asked, “What do you think is the number one question you should be asking before decorating your home?” I know what my answer is, but some of the responses are too good not to share before I get started. Some of the serious answers showed that people actually read my posts, and some of the funny answers made me laugh out loud.

My mom said, “Can I shop my house before I buy something?” That’s a good question to ask, but I think another question should come first! (Also hi, Mom!)

My friend Stephanie had a similar response. “How can I redecorate using what I already have?” Another important question, but I think it comes later in the process!

My friend, Briee, had some pretty good questions that really made me reconsider my number one.

“Will my husband move the furniture for me AGAIN?”

And my favorite…

“Do I even live here?!?!?!”

These questions are ALL good questions to ask before you design or tweak any space in your home. (Especially “Do I live here?” You should probably make sure you are in YOUR HOME before you start changing things around!)

But before you ask yourself WHAT you are going to change (or even HOW you’re going to do it) I think it is much more important to ask yourself WHY. 

Asking yourself WHY you want to create or change a space should be the first step in your design process. 

If you don’t know why you’re decorating, furnishing, or styling a space, you won’t have a clear vision for the finished product. Homes are never really finished, which is a good thing. Your home will evolve through different seasons and hopefully change when necessary to better serve you and your family. But before you begin redesigning a space or even adjusting it slightly, ask yourself why you care in the first place.

When you have a clear purpose behind your decorating, you will be able to achieve your vision for your home.

If you don’t have a reason for why you’re decorating, you’ll probably have to spend time and resources to re-do your space over and over and over because you’re not working towards a goal. So ask yourself, “Why am I decorating my home?”

I’ll tell you my “why”. I spend time and effort decorating our home because I want it to be a sanctuary. I try to keep it clean because I relax best when a space is free of clutter. I try to make our rooms cozy so that my husband and I can relax at home together, and so friends can feel at peace when they are here. I’m a homebody, so it’s important to me that my home is a peaceful and enjoyable place to be. Because my goal is to have a cozy and restful home, I make design decisions that align with goal. If it ain’t cozy, I don’t want it. I like things to be simple, but interesting. I like furniture and decor that has character, so I mostly shop at thrift stores. When you decorate different rooms in your home, be sure to keep your overall “why” at the forefront of your decision-making.

You can have a more specific “why” for each individual room of your home.


For example, it is important to me that our bedroom is as clean and clutter free as possible. With the exception of Saturday morning chocolate croissants in bed, I don’t bring food into our room. I don’t have any plants in here, because they don’t feel clean to me (weird, I know. You do you and I’ll do me.) We have white bedding because it feels peaceful and cozy (and I can switch out the throw pillows when I’m antsy for a small change). I keep color and accessorizing to a minimum so my eyes and my brain aren’t overstimulated by lots of “stuff”.


What’s your why? Why do you decorate your home?

Once you know your “why”, you can ask yourself how.

How do you want it to feel?

When you know how you want it to feel, you can start to ask how you want it to look.


If you start with asking how it should look, you might find yourself wanting to redo a space when you find another look you like better. But when you have an overall vision for your home that can be translated to a feeling, deciding how it should look will come a lot easier.

What’s your why? I’ll share mine again in the comments below. I’d love to write a post sharing the responses from readers. Thanks for reading, and have a great weekend!

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One thought on “The Number One Question You Should Be Asking Before Decorating Your Home

  1. Hi Avery, I’ve just discovered your blog and I really love your kitchen makeover. I also love your trash chair – what a find!!
    Looking forward to reading more.

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