Designing myself.

I thought about titling this post “ME ME ME ME ME ME (and a little more ME),” because let’s face it—this is a whole bunch of ME. I don’t post a lot of photos of myself on the blog, I guess because it just always feels awkward. I hate having my picture taken by other people, and I don’t like taking a photo of myself unless the camera/phone is visible in the picture as well. Having the camera visible makes the resulting photo less about documenting the subject and more of a marker of that specific moment—which is the act of taking the photo.

Am I over-thinking it? Maybe, but all of that over-thinking made me realize something: I am my own design project. Here are some Instagram snaps from over the past few weeks.

So yeah. I mean…I pretty much look like my house. I don’t really draw any distinction between designing myself and designing anything else. I have a set of limitations that I need to work with, and a knowledge of how to use certain tools and materials in order to achieve the results I want. I never think about what would be perceived as “sexy” or whatever, that’s just not something I’m concerned with. I do like to look attractive, of course, but for me physical attractiveness (in anyone) is determined not by a specific set of features, but by a series of proportions, contrasts, textures and colors—exactly the same things that make a room or a book cover or a garden appealing to me.

OH, AND: Here’s me matching my dorm room 18 years ago.

I’m curious: How about you? Do you “match” your home? If you’re an artist or designer, do you feel like there’s a correlation between your professional work and, say, your hair?

91 comments
  1. tamera jane @ verhextApr 27, 20129:33 pm

    Yes, I totally match my house, I think. In the way that my house is as eclectic and randomly thrifted / stumbled upon as my clothing, and I can’t decide what I like and change my mind 100 times. It’s also old but has good bones, haha.

    [Reply]

    me again /

    Also I forgot to mention that photo #4 up there is still the hottest thing ever and makes me want straight hair like crazy. THE END.

    Anna @ D16 /

    OLD WITH GOOD BONES. Hahaha. You totally look like your house, and I wonder if your personal style will evolve as you do more renovation work on the house. I think that happens.

    And I love your curls.

  2. SamanthaApr 27, 20129:42 pm

    I don’t match my house, but both my house and appearance have a distinct vibe of “I’m in college and don’t have much money to spend” Still, I try to make the best of what I have in both realms. I think one day, I’ll match my home.

    [Reply]

    Anna @ D16 /

    I matched my dorm room when I was in college. :)

  3. AllisonApr 27, 20129:46 pm

    Hmm, the more I think about it, the more I think I probably do dress somewhat like I decorate, though not totally — what’s the decor equivalent of a cardigan? I do like lots of colors for both my house and myself, prefer brown or blue to black as a base, and am comfortable with a fairly high level of kitsch.

    [Reply]

    Anna @ D16 /

    I think the decor equivalent of a cardigan is a blanket on the back of a sofa!

    Allison /

    Then check, because I have a blanket there!

  4. Brittany @ Get FreshApr 27, 20129:56 pm

    I think I do look like my art sometimes haha. Lots of gold, big hair, very colorful, pseudo 70s. Even though my closet is a lot of black these days.

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  5. ShawnApr 27, 201210:01 pm

    I feel I do match my fashion sense to my decorating. I like to mix casual and formal wear. In the same sense, I love to decorate in a modern style with a touch of humor through accessories. I wear concert t-shirts with a blazer and I love my framed show posters. I usually wear large quantities of black with pops of color. I definitely design myself and everything around me in a similar fashion. Thanks for helping me realize this.

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  6. FLTApr 27, 201210:13 pm

    The only way I match my house is that I like metallics in my wardrobe and in my house. But I am always complimented on my personal “style” and I find it really easy to dress myself–and it’s much harder for me to put my home together. It gets to be where I want it, but it’s a loooong process.

    Also, I think once you have a kid (or a spouse), it’s not really all you. My husband and I have similar overall taste, but there are things I’d do differently if I lived alone.

    [Reply]

    Gracie /

    Yeah me too, I’d be a lot more crazy cat lady if I didn’t have to share decisions with my boyfriend, ha ha

  7. KerryApr 27, 201210:14 pm

    Love this post! I have never really thought of it before and now that you mention it I totally match my house. Some items are thrifted, some are handmade, there is cheap mixed with a little high end. I had a similar ode to The Cure in high school (love!).

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  8. jennApr 27, 201210:19 pm

    I am a graphic designer as well and I find that I am generally drawn to the same colors/textures/patterns in my home, my clothes, and my design work. I wouldn’t say my haircut matches my video work but there is definitely a distinct “jenn-ness” that comes out in everything that I touch, including myself.

    Most people come into my home and say it looks like me. I’ve never really considered that also means that I look like my home!

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  9. CorieApr 27, 201210:33 pm

    I know this is random and maybe a little weird, but I think you totally kick ass!

    [Reply]

    Anna @ D16 /

    I don’t think that’s weird, Corie! That’s cool to hear, thank you. xx

  10. puck @ cottage of stoneApr 27, 201210:40 pm

    Yes, I match my house… Or my house matches me (and not Steven and my boys). pretty much every room has pink, aqua and orange pops of color… I wear pink nearly every day. :)

    My day job is quite boring and not artistic… But in my spare time, drawing and playing in a band are my creative outlets. My band logo is pink. And my bass strap is pink. I also covered my Ampeg in pink leopard print. I also love a million kinds of music, and love everything victorian thru seventies…

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  11. LaDonnaApr 27, 201210:45 pm

    my favorite colors to wear are also my favorite colors to decorate with so yes I match my apartment.
    turquoise or kelly green or red with pale gray or brown as my neutral

    [Reply]

  12. KristinApr 27, 201211:01 pm

    Your hair looks SO pretty- especially in the second row of photos. Really like that little black stripe on your nails. Going to have to try that…

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  13. SallyApr 27, 201211:02 pm

    It’s funny because I love all things house related, pour over Craigs List for vintage furniture, and generally spend a ton of time dreaming about home things, but I can’t bring myself to get into fashion/personal appearance. I really would like to get more creative with all that. A new goal!

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  14. Amy @ seven grey sweatersApr 27, 201211:14 pm

    What an interesting topic! I am definitely seeing my personal style evolve along with my interiors. I struggle with finding clothes I like and defining that style, so sometimes I’ll make a decision by asking myself “would this look good in my house?”

    Another thing that is HUGE for me is place. My style shifts every time I move to a different part of the country. My last move was from Chicago to a SoCal beach town, and suddenly my wardrobe full of black seemed distinctly wrong. And my home design became a bit more eclectic.

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  15. ChloeApr 28, 201212:29 am

    I never thought of house/wardrobe design in this way but now that you mention it I realize that i look for the same things in clothes and furniture/home accessories. it’s all about minimalistic lines & cut, neutral colors and graphic patterns. It’s such a fresh perspective on things!

    Ps. I’ve the haircut you have now for three years and just saw that we also have similar haircolor. i swear i’m not creepy, i just like to think great minds think alike ;)

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  16. nicolezhApr 28, 201212:43 am

    Hi Anna, I love your magenta lipstick in the pic with big blac sunglasses and a coffee to go in your hands. Do you remember its brand and name?

    [Reply]

    Anna @ D16 /

    It’s MAC Lady Danger, which is actually a really bright orange. The lighting in the photo is making it read magenta…I wish I had a lipstick that color! :)

  17. Rosa, CopenhagenApr 28, 20123:02 am

    Hmmm…. I don’t match my home. Not at all.
    I love colors in my home, which is also a bit messy but very cosy.
    I dress very conservatively, grey, black, lavender… so I do not look like my home at all!
    I never, never ever thought about it – maybe because the idea of ‘branding’ my self is such an unthinkable thought for me.
    I’m absolute sure its because of my age.
    I’m vintage, you know;-)

    [Reply]

  18. Emma ::emmas designblogg::Apr 28, 20123:14 am

    I totally match my home! I tend to dress a bit darker than I decorate though. The base for my wardrobe is black and grey, with some white accents, and my home is the other way around. And of course the only acceptable pattern is stripes, and that goes for both home and clothes.
    My home is quite relaxed and so are my outfits. Lots of skinny jeans and big slouchy cardigans.
    I also have a tendency towards quick fixes instead of really taking care of the problem. :D

    Love all your cool nail polish patterns!

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  19. LenaApr 28, 20125:15 am

    Emily Henderson (Secrets from a Stylist) had originally the show idea to base the room on the wardrobe of the owners. That was also what she did in the last episode of Design Star. I think she also wrote on her blog about that & had a few pictures of people’s clothes and their rooms.
    One thing I noticed about myself: I like polka dot accessoires, some of them are clothes (like a scarf) and some of them are for the home (like a mug). I also like similar colours for clothes & home.

    [Reply]

  20. katieApr 28, 20125:38 am

    Love your nails! I ‘design myself’ like I design my house (and my websites) too -always lots of grey and neutrals with a pop of mustard or red, ha ha.

    [Reply]

  21. NicoleApr 28, 20125:42 am

    I think I do match my home and work in that:
    a. There’s a whole mix of styles. A lovely dichotomy between good taste and full-on kitsch.
    b. I sure do love me some gray and black… and polkadots
    c. There’s always an element of cuteness/tweeness lurking beneath. Something I just can’t shake off.

    Also no matter how awkward it might feel, keep posting pics of your style and self – it’s always inspired me!

    [Reply]

    Lisa /

    Yes! You put words on my thoughts. A lurking tweeness that can’t be shaken off. For you it might work to your advantage, but for me my home ends up being a bit too old-womansy, and my personal style frumpy/ mumsy and not the cool vintage twist I’m after.

  22. ClareApr 28, 20126:36 am

    Never really thought about it that much but damn! I am loving the nail polishes. Totally stealing those geometric designs.

    I guess both my home and my wardrobe involve a combo of low-maintenance/ comfy and looks/ style (I’m never going to choose the white velvet sofa or the white velvet skirt, no matter how good they look. I’m more of a leather sofa/ chambray shirt girl). And I’m crazy for mustard/ gold in both the house and my wardrobe right now.

    [Reply]

  23. DeniseApr 28, 20129:34 am

    Hi Anna:

    First time commenter, looooong time reader. I really love these pictures! And my, how long your hair has gotten – it’s great! From time to time, you do a “what-I’m-into-clothing-and-makeup-wise” sort of post, which I love. Do you think you could do one of those soon? It looks like you’d have some good stuff to share. Thanks!

    [Reply]

  24. KathleenApr 28, 201210:23 am

    I’ve been trying to come up with the words to comment on your inspiration post (it’s something I’ve been giving a lot of thought to lately) but this post is actually more relevant to how I feel about being inspired and living a creative life.

    In college my apartment was kind of sad. I mean – the actual duplex I lived in was super cute – the architecture was rad – but I had a mattress on the floor, cheap blinds and a futon. I was working with what I had which in turn very much matched my basic skill set as I was building my design foundation. I’m glad it was that way. I’m glad that my aesthetic has grown organically. I’m glad I didn’t have Pinterest and Dribbble back then – it would’ve paralyzed me. (But that’s a whole other tangent…)

    Now, almost a decade later, I feel like I’ve finally scratched the surface of my own personal style. And now I am very carefully making sure it is articulated in everything I touch – from my hair and wardrobe to my home to my graphic design and now even in my writing. Now it is very clear that all of these things, when it comes down to it, are very much the same.

    But P.S. As of right now I am going to stop biting my nails. Yours are fantastic. They inspire me (ha!).

    [Reply]

  25. tracyApr 28, 201211:55 am

    you have EXCEPTIONAL taste in everything you do!
    i hope to one day to have black & white striped walls so i can match all my shirts.

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  26. ReneeApr 28, 201212:52 pm

    I don’t think i do match my house. Although, i just moved and right now stuff’s pretty crazy, so I might match it in That way. But I tend to keep my place more neutral. I used to keep my closet pretty neutral too, but lately i’ve been drawn to bright colors and patterns. Its like my clothing taste is finally catching up to my taste in shoes and nail polish. Speaking of, I L-O-V-E love all the nail shots. Do you do your own nails, or are those professional?

    [Reply]

    Anna @ D16 /

    I only do my own nails! I actually love painting my nails…it’s like a tiny renovation project that I can definitely complete in under an hour. :)

  27. mommyApr 28, 20124:59 pm

    Never too many pictures of you. I like nail polish, but seems to irritate my nails. Does that not happen to you? I was also wondering if the last manicure shot was taken right after you finished gardening? Just kidding. : )

    [Reply]

    Anna @ D16 /

    Oh, you’re funny. ;) No, nail polish doesn’t bother me at all! Do you know what ingredient you’re allergic to?

  28. BrightApr 28, 20125:30 pm

    I’m not a visually artistic person and I feel like I reflect that, however I know a few artists and they really do treat themselves, their houses, and their lives as an extension of their art. I think it’s fascinating and I’ve considered looking at myself in the same way.

    Your ombre hair is making me crave ombre hair like cake.

    [Reply]

  29. mommyApr 28, 20126:25 pm

    I though formaldehyde was the problem, but OPI, the most recent brand I have tried, doesn’t have it.

    [Reply]

    Anna @ D16 /

    Hmmmm. Maybe you should try Butter nail polish. It’s non-toxic…no formaldehyde, toluene, DBP or parabens. I have a couple of bottles that you could test out, but they’re probably colors you’re not interested in (gold, black with sparkles, dark blue).

  30. gracieApr 28, 20126:27 pm

    I loved reading everyones comments, I always think about this because a lot of people I know dress differently but their homes look the same. I feel disappointed when I am in someone’s home and I can’t get anything about them from it. I think my surroundings are definitely an extension of myself, even though I rent I still had to repaint some rooms and put down new flooring in the bedroom. I always want things to be just so.. with my home & appearance, it makes me feel good. I like old things or new things in an an old style, for my home and my wardrobe, like a vintage inspired new dress or my Ikea stockholm coffee table. That goes for my hair and make up too. Yay fun topic.

    [Reply]

  31. kimberlyApr 28, 20127:09 pm

    i completely match my home. in fact, even my rabbit matches my home. (the rabbit though might be a coincidence)

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  32. Mamma BiscuitApr 28, 20127:47 pm

    There are facets about my personal style that match the interiors of my home but for the most part, I do not think that my outward appearance would directly reflect my home as a whole. The only common ground they both share in my opinion is a love for the vintage. Most people tell me that my home seems more feminine then they would have thought judging my taste in clothing but those people are the one that always seem to put me in that Tom of Finland box! anyway, you’ve known me long enough to know that I’d wear a woman’s jumpsuit without irony. . . . and I probably have in the past and that alone does not correlate to the organic tree trunk coffee table in my living room! LOL Mamma Biscuit on the other hand totes has a wardrobe and sense of style that matches our crib!
    xox

    [Reply]

    Anna @ D16 /

    You know what, though…because I do know you (and probably in a different way then your “evening friends” do), I see SO MUCH of who you are reflected in your home. There’s a traditionalism to your personality that I think comes from your upbringing, and that DOES come through in the decor (and seasonal decoration!) in your home. Maybe your personal style relates more to the progressive side of you that’s non-traditional? At least that’s how I see it. It’s all YOU, though, and I love that there are so many sides to your personality and aesthetic sensibilities.

    (I love that I’m replying to you as Mamma Biscuit, hahahaha.)

  33. beccaApr 28, 20128:36 pm

    yay :D love your nails… that little stripe/dot thing in the second picture is what I do most of the time, too…some people think I’m crazy but it’s just so cute ;)

    My home is more varied than my personal style. It’s just hard to find (for example) cool 50s style clothing my size, that doesn’t look like I’m wearing a costume…
    I also love black, so I wear at least one black piece every day, but my home is way more colorful. Maybe it just complements ;)

    [Reply]

  34. chrisApr 28, 20128:37 pm

    I don’t match my home…or do I? It’s always warm and cozy, lots of wood and ramshackle-ness, a lot of light, in parts falling apart, okay, sounds like me. LOL. I can have a bath in the afternoon with the window open and it is so sunny I have to wear sunglasses. I don’t know anyone who wears sunglasses in the bathtub, come to think of it. Fa-rrrreeeeeeak!

    [Reply]

    Anna @ D16 /

    I want to wear sunglasses in the bathtub!!

  35. katrinaApr 28, 20129:35 pm

    oh, anna. i adore your style: outfit choices (at least the ones i’ve seen!), accessories, and home decor. i’m lovin’ all your nail designs, too, especially the gray theme with the single hot pink stripe. SO PRETTY.

    as for me, there is a great disconnect between my work and how i look and live in real life. i’ve become a lazy decorator!

    ps. i HEART the cure, too.

    [Reply]

  36. peggyApr 29, 20121:21 am

    Anna, you are gorgeous! I love your hair long. I love your sunglasses. And, I love the various ways you have done your nails, which by the way I am going to steal.

    [Reply]

  37. Tina@FlyingHouseApr 29, 20122:37 pm

    I have thought about this idea a lot. As I walk around my house I see little pieces of each member of the family and how they style their lives! I just don’t see how you can separate them! BTW- LOVE the nails! Your home and you rock!

    [Reply]

  38. JuliaApr 29, 20123:40 pm

    I’m not surprised you found that out. Some thoughts about it.

    I really don’t feel I design my home or spaces around looks, but rather, habits and needs. I have a toddler, so both change rather dramatically – every furniture I own is the smallest and lightest available version so it can be shuffled around without much pain. My husband needs complete darkness to sleep, so we do have heavy curtains. We bought and moved into this place when my baby was 6 months old, so everything is “toddlerized” (if there is such word) – not adapted to be safe for a child, but created having child safety and convenience in mind.

    Same applies to my wardrobe. Everything matches with everything else, is comfy and can be machine washed. I walk about 2 miles every day (and I’m a fast walker), so all my shoes are comfortable. My hair is long, so it doesn’t need to be cut regularly and I can put it in a ponytail.

    Do I or my home look good? I don’t think so. But they certainly match.

    A while ago I was perusing a book titled “Scandinavian design”, covering around 1995-2010, and I’m convinced that the best design scandinavians ever did was themselves. The people in the pictures is just the epitome of whatever product they were reviewing. Lean without being skinny, strong without being sturdy, elegant without being fussy. Oh my god.

    When my cousin started Fine Arts college, the first thing she designed was herself. She started experimenting with fabric and colors, and haircut and body posture. She became her best work of art. I admired her then (our paths haven’t crossed for more than 10 years now) but I simply couldn’t follow her example.

    Whenever I find out that someone who looks wonderful (expensive, cool, neat, whatever) lives in a place that doesn’t match (cheap, boring, shabby, whatever), my next discovery is that person is shallow.

    [Reply]

  39. DusaApr 29, 20124:07 pm

    Did you ‘ombre’ your hair?? Supa-cool!

    Hmmm…my house is way more bright and colorful than my wardrobe. I tend to go classic (some read that as “safe”) in my wardrobe. I find that as a “> a size 16 woman”, it’s easier to go classic with the clothes and funky with the nails or jewelry.

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  40. JenApr 30, 20123:43 am

    You do look like house. I mean, the tidy and pretty Swede of it. And your black accent wall (shades). I might be like my house… layers of eras, a little disheveled, but interesting pieces if you look close enough. And lots of moon and ocean.

    Also, these pictures pasted together make me miss you even more! XOXO

    [Reply]

  41. FernandaApr 30, 20128:51 am

    Yes, my house matches my personal style pretty much. I usually tend to wear clothes in neutral colors, paired with interesting designed accessories. My house is just like that.

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  42. JaimieApr 30, 20129:07 am

    Interesting question. I just recently visited a coworker’s house and it looked EXACTLY like her and the way she presents herself, and I commented to her that she has a very consistent aesthetic. I wear a greater variety of colours than I decorate with (partly due to living in a smallish space and wanting it to be cohesive, and partly due to compromise with my husband who isn’t as keen on coral as I am). I think of the way I dress, and decorate, as ‘modern classic’ — definitely skewing more towards traditional but no super-fussy patterns or furniture styles.

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  43. DanApr 30, 201211:43 am

    I like Brooks Brothers clothes. I like my Ethan Allen couch. I never made the connection before. Thanks for helping me!

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  44. Louise LeMansApr 30, 20121:03 pm

    I’m a graphic designer. I rent an apartment in a 4-plex built in 1903 that was rehabed 4 years ago. It still maintains its charm which is why I love it and feel at home. I live with a combination of Ikea, CB2 and antiques from the 1950’s and 60’s. This pretty much sums up my personal style and my design style as well. I mix a lot of vintage/vintage reproduction stuff with wacky, modern architectural stuff (e.g. Trashy Diva dresses and Chi Mihara heels). My designs (I’m a publication designer) tend to be very Swiss grid influenced, typographically driven, and any time I can leave some white space and work with fantastic photography, I do.

    Someday I will own my 50s ranch and a Knoll sofa, but for now, life is good.

    My room when I was 18 was covered in ads from fashion magazines, a screen printed Beastie Boys poster by Koop and a PJ Harvey poster. Things have refined, but haven’t changed a whole lot.

    [Reply]

  45. jacquelineApr 30, 20122:05 pm

    My interior style is much more minimal than my dress style. My wardrobe is a lot more eclectic. Although I think there are some overlaps — I always think of my personal sense of style as having a little unpolished element somewhere in the mix, whether my ensemble or a room in my home. I like a look that mostly feels put together, but then adding a bit of odd quirkiness.

    I think my professional style and my personal style definitely influence each other as well. Thinking about fashion history and curation has had subtle influences on personal choices, and I’m sure my personal preferences are visible through my exhibitions and writing. I probably can’t see the similarities as much since I’m so deep in it, but an outsider probably can identify them right away.

    [Reply]

  46. Caroline RoyceApr 30, 20122:10 pm

    Interesting question. I have a couple answers:

    I dress in predominantly black, with my secondary colors being grey and white, and focusing on simple patterns like stripes, chevron and polka dots. I *NEVER* wear color except on my nails and my lips. The only room in my house thats a reflection of this is my office. I have a huge white desk, white walls, and everything else is black. There are only a few pops of red here and there.

    In my designs, I love to use color. I like design that looks fun and vintage. So, that’s what the rest of my house looks like. The furniture is still neutral-based, but there are pops of bright vibrant colors everywhere!

    It’s a fun question. I think constantly how I like to have everything in my life be cohesive and feel like it’s all a “brand”. Even my business cards are designed to match how I dress.

    [Reply]

  47. kay w.Apr 30, 20122:13 pm

    hm, good question. i think the way i decorate my home and the way i look/dress share a similar aesthetic (more play in proportions/shape/textures than color/print, diversity in style but not disorderly, etc), but i don’t think i look like my apartment by any means. not to say they’re completely incongruous, but if i thought hard about it, it feels more like my home functions as a separate but related extension of myself and provides a means for me to experiment with something i may not try on myself yet, and vice versa. i guess in a way similar to how people decorate different rooms of the same house in completely different ways, to be able to try a bunch of different things at once.

    [Reply]

  48. design travellerApr 30, 20122:18 pm

    Nicely designed nails ;)
    I feel like stealing some ideas!

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  49. mariApr 30, 20122:47 pm

    i’m not sure if i “match” my bedroom as well as you match your home(s), but you can definitely tell that a moody, natural, disorganized, animal-loving tomboy inhabits it. a lot of wood and wicker, geodes and skeletons/teeth, terrariums and animal enclosures, cluttered cork board and perpetually unmade bed (it’s mentally painful for me to make my bed–beds were made to be disheveled, imho). i used to have movie posters all over my walls, but now i just have a big 3ftx2ft poster of jeff goldblum above my bed, haha.

    also, when did you ombre your hair? OMG. it looks really good!

    [Reply]

    Anna @ D16 /

    “now i just have a big 3ftx2ft poster of jeff goldblum above my bed”

    I love you!

    Girl, I did my hair like three weeks ago. This is why you need to be on the Twitter more often!

  50. SolangeApr 30, 20124:10 pm

    Off topic, there’s a 1908 photo of NY that I knew I have saw somewhere :D
    (http://www.vintag.es/2012/04/10-amazing-black-and-white-photos-of.html#more)

    [Reply]

    Anna @ D16 /

    Here’s the whole collection if you’re interested:
    http://www.nyc.gov/html/records/html/gallery/home.shtml

  51. Melissa KlotzApr 30, 20125:42 pm

    I really love your new hairstyle — very pretty!!

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  52. AnnaApr 30, 201211:36 pm

    I work in a furniture/textile/design retail environment and I have found that frequently customers come in and request items in nearly the same color they are wearing. i don’t think it is coincidence. I personally dress the way I decorate- yet the outcome is drastically different. Mellow earth tones at home- bright pops of color in the wardrobe. But eclectic combos in both? Yes indeed.

    [Reply]

  53. LorieMay 1, 201212:32 am

    What is this “ombre” you uber hip people speak of? :) And I think I totally match my house. Vintage, a bit messy but longing to be more polished. And my house is full of solid colors (gray, black, white, tan with red accents) and those are the colors I gravitate toward in my clothing choices. I never woulda put it together. And I am totally digging your long hair!!!!

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  54. KellyMay 1, 201212:44 am

    This post is rad, you definitely match your house, and I love what you said about a person’s attractiveness being more about a series of proportions, textures, etc. Totally agree! Unfortunately, I think my house is way cuter than me. I seem to know exactly what my decorating style is, but I struggle sometimes with my personal style vs. what clothes actually look good on my body. Sometimes I end up compromising one for the other. But the one thing I do know is that, in both cases, I am not afraid of color, and I love a good wacky “conversational” accessory!

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  55. KateMay 1, 20122:10 pm

    Love your nails!

    I don’t match my house, but I like to think that’s because I haven’t had the chance to get my house up to speed with the rest of me. I moved recently, and I desperately need to buy some new furniture and switch up some accessories. I think my personal style has developed a lot over the past year, mostly because of the design work I’ve been doing (classes/homework), and it’s easier for me to shop for clothes than it is to shop for my house. With summer coming up (and a much needed break from school work), I hope to change that.

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  56. emily @ thirtyeight20May 1, 20124:07 pm

    I think I do match my house, or at least the approach. Utilitarian, well-made materials. Put together but not very flashy. Generally low maintenance, generally not trendy. Economical, but not skimping on important things (bras, shoes, flooring, lighting). Trying to accentuate the good parts. Unexpected details (like a crazy pair of shoes or a bright blue dentist chair.)

    My hair and my bedroom are always a mess… two things I’m working on.

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  57. LizzieMay 1, 20128:37 pm

    I actually don’t think there’s anything wrong with wanting to have a certain look for yourself and striving to do that with your life as a whole. As long as it’s for you, and it’s realistic and honest — then it’s even a healthy thing, I think. It’s your outlet for personal creativity. And I think I’ve said this before in a comment, (so forgive my repetitiveness) but one of the reasons I admire your blog is because you put effort into your details — whether it’s your house or yourself, you think it out and make it yours. That’s really admirable. It’s interesting to see how you’ve evolved from your teen years, the style is essentially the same — it’s just gotten more mature and focused as you’ve went a long it seems.

    I’m only an almost illustrator / designer, so I feel a bit weird calling myself an artist just yet, but I do try to match my surroundings to myself as well. It feels good to feel like yourself.

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  58. melanieMay 1, 201210:27 pm

    All I know is I freaking LOVE your nail polish!!
    And my house and myself are completely undesigned, just sort of random, so I guess well-suited to each other, actually. We are both fun and weird and lots of hand-me-downs.

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  59. I love these photos – and you’re almost inspiring me to wear nail polish again! I always used to but then I became a full-time artist, and as I’m primarily a painter my hands are always covered in acrylic paint which kept getting stuck to my nail polish and wouldn’t wash off, so my nails just looked really tacky and odd and a gazillion different colours.

    But I look at your nails and I want to experiment with mine again!

    Anyway, what I was going to say is that you’re so right – it has been pointed out to me on more occasions than I care to remember how much I resemble my artwork in the way I dress, and indeed how my house is also an extension of my work / me. It’s totally unintentional but I have very strong likes / dislikes so I guess it’s inevitable!

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  60. elisabethMay 2, 20124:00 pm

    ….late to the party on this post, and i have not read the comments above, so bear with me if this has been asked and answered BUT did you color the ends of your hair a shade other than black? or is that just the lighting or your instagram dabbles? if you haven’t, you should consider it, for it looks very cool….and, love seeing a soft curl (very very very soft ) in your hair. all good.

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  61. moparMay 3, 201212:30 am

    Your friend Daniel bought his dog to match his fireplace, right? I would like to make curtains inspired by a Trovata shirt. (Twill denim fabric, tortoise buttons with clashing red thread, etc.) Of course we all match our houses. Don’t we? Unfortunately my house has been under renovation for two years.

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  62. LisaMay 3, 20126:42 am

    I really like your style/beauty posts, even though I’m generally trying to avoid the whole beauty-hysteria going on. And I think the difference is in your attitude: it’s more about what you DO than what you ARE.
    Even if you had been someone who was not in any way considered “pretty” or “good looking”, you would still have looked great, beacuse it’s all in your style. Every photo I see of you inspires me, much like every photo of your home. The details are always perfection, like that fab yellow earring.

    As for myself, I guess my personal style is pretty much like my interior design style. So much intention, and then… the result falls short because my lack of ability, or from not being stringent or cohesive enough. And I always look to the details, but often overlook the big pieces: Buy ahahmazing earrings, curtains/ shoes/ bowls, but get a cheap compromise of a dress or couch. My image of myself and my house is probably not the image other peole see, just because I’m able to focus on those small things that are “sooo me”, and just think of the rest as random, not reflecting who I actually am, just a consequence of my wallet/ clothing/ room size. But to other people my style might seem like that cheap couch, and not that to die for necklace. Horror!

    I also think that for me, my very white house is exactly the same as my very black wardrobe: Just an easy calm choise, a canvas for the ever changing fun details.

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  63. MelindaMay 3, 20123:48 pm

    I love color, its my most favorite thing in the world, but I match my staple furniture to my cat. She’s this beautiful blue (or brownish if she’s outside) gray color and my clothes match her and I use color as an accent, much like my living space. Am I strange for matching my cat? :-p

    <3 Melinda

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  64. annikaMay 4, 201211:17 am

    I love everything you’ve been doing with your fingernails recently and I am also very much thinking about getting my hair done in the ombre style that suits you so well.
    For the personal style/design style aspect: I really don’t know. Maybe yes in the sense that as well as my wardrobe my house still doesn’t feel very much done. I am still trying to figure out my style.

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  65. frannieMay 4, 20123:27 pm

    my god- you are looking FABULOUS. your hair (!), those sunglasses, your sweet-assed nails! you get better looking every year, i swear. xxoo

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  66. DaveMay 4, 20128:12 pm

    Dig your iphone cover – where did you get it from?

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    Anna @ D16 /

    Society6. Terrible quality and hugely overpriced, not recommended!

  67. DesigningDawnMay 9, 201211:14 am

    This post pretty much sums up my whole blog. I feel like my professional life as a designer transcends websites and logos and crosses over into my home and my personal style- so I document it all. I’m glad to see I’m not the only one who has a love of design and aesthetics in all forms!

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  68. RebeccaNYCMay 21, 20127:58 am

    The best compliment I ever get is from my friends and family when they say that my home is so distinctly me. My work friends immediately recognize my desk style, and my family just knows that this is ME. Always. And I take this as a good thing.

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  69. AlexMay 22, 201210:07 pm

    If I could find my old high school room photo wall, I had the Robert Smith photo, the giant gold standard of James jacket wearing Violator album cover poster/DM 101 among a million other black and white photographic shots. My hair was died black. Eyeliner. Red lipstick. And you couldn’t pry me out of my 12 hole combat boots. Funny how life changes. If you had asked me them what my decor would be in my 30’s I’d have told you deep burgundy blood red walls, dark gothic furniture and a touch of leopard print meets New Orleans. I couldn’t even be further from there right now and yet your post brought back some good memories. That kid is inside somewhere. She still wears a lot of black. Yet her entire house is painted white.

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  70. ElisabethJun 13, 20122:08 pm

    Love this post Anna :)!

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  71. AmielleJun 18, 201212:53 am

    Right now, because I’m back at my parents’ place for the summer, I don’t match too much. I’m sharing a room with my sister once again (oh dear) and am so busy with work that everything’s an absolute mess, when normally I’m ‘a place for everything and everything in its place’.

    Otherwise, when I did have my own place while I was at school, I matched in a ‘from a thrift store and it mostly matches/fits well, so yes’ kind of way. :)

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  72. LenaJul 28, 20124:50 pm

    Anna, I know this is old news and you just posted about new hair happenings, but when you ombred your hair did you do it yourself? And if so what products did you use? I’m thinking about doing mine even though I’m a gazillion years behind everybody else. I really like the way it looks.

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    Anna @ D16 /

    Yes, I did do it myself! I can’t remember what brand of bleach I used, maybe Clairol? Multiple rounds starting at various heights. Tedious but simple!

  73. lenaJul 29, 20127:05 am

    Thanks!

    [Reply]

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