“I’ve got a good eye for style, is that enough?” What it really takes to create an exceptional space.

Decorating your home is a very personal experience, whether you do it yourself or hire a professional. While it’s great to have confidence in your taste and skills, there are a lot of other elements that come into play. 

Firstly, do you have the time?

Painstakingly putting together a look can be hard and extremely time consuming. There are so many images to draw on these days that it can be hard to even decide on a look, let alone sourcing the pieces. A professional stylist will take their cues from your brief and curate a look for you. The process is highly collaborative and your look will be tweaked and adjusted until you have something you adore. 

Do you have the time to source all the pieces once you have finally decided on them, and are you sure they will all work together? You’ll spend all your spare time, your weekends, running around from shop to shop hoping it all works together when it gets into your home, only to find that the sofa you loved so much in store isn’t quite the right shade.  

Decorating yourself can sometimes result in some expensive and time-consuming mistakes. Decorators also have extensive lists of contacts and suppliers, a lot of which are not available to the public. Therefore, they have access to pieces you wouldn’t even see and are often far better quality than the mass-produced items on the market, and far more unique. 

Which brings me to my next point, do you have the resources? 

As well as our list of suppliers, we have tools that ensure all the pieces work together before anything is even ordered, such as floor plans and mood boards. These can be adjusted and revised until you are 100% happy with the look. And then, and only then, do we start placing orders. You are therefore able to move forward with confidence that all the items you have selected will work harmoniously in your home. 

One of the barriers I see that people may have to hiring a stylist is concerns that the finished home may not reflect their personality. Some feel like hiring a stylist may mean that their personal tastes are lost in the process. However, a good stylist will meet your brief and incorporate any pieces you wish to retain. This way, you will achieve a look that is unique to you and retain any pieces that are special or of sentimental value. 

Before embarking on a DIY decorating project, you need to think very carefully about all I have mentioned above. The main disadvantage being that you may mess it up. Then you’ll either have to live with it for a very long time, or pay to make it go away. Decorating your own home won’t necessarily save you money. What is your time worth? Decorating is extremely time consuming, involving a huge number of decisions, and DIY can result in costly mistakes.  

There also exists a mindset that hiring a stylist is expensive, and that only if you own a palace should you engage one. There are so many affordable decorating services these days, that no one needs to go without.  

So if you have the eye, the skills, and the time, go for it. There can be a huge sense of achievement when decorating your own home, if you get it right. However, a good stylist will involve you in the process and make you feel like you played a major role in the outcome. 

Happy decorating,  

Amanda x


Style Your Way


Tired of having design block when trying to pick colours, décor and furniture?

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Created for both aspiring amateurs and professional interior stylists alike, awarded Australian interior stylist Amanda Smythe’s new ebook is a perfect balance of the practical and the inspirational.


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