What does your home say about you? You may think it gives away no more than your taste in curtains or whether you’re tidy or messy: but in fact your home is a precise barometer of your personality. Every room gives away clues to your psyche; every furniture choice reveals your innermost nature. Judy George, author of The Domain Book of Intuitive Home Design, reckon we all fall into four categories: we are either Visionaries or Artisans, Idealists or Adventurers. “If you’re an Idealist you might be happiest in a sleek, contemporary home with all the latest conveniences,” says Judy George, “but if you’re an Adventurer, you would more likely be found in a lively home which bursts with colour and surprise. You might be a Visionary if you love fine antiques and classic proportions; if you’re more interested in casual, comfortable furnishings and a great view of the outdoors, then you’re probably an Artisan.”
Some people are natural, instinctive home-makers but others may find it all a bit perplexing. By finding out your home personality, you can tailor your home to fulfill your passions. You can make your outer environment a quiet reflection of your inner world.
THE INTUITIVE PERSONALITY QUIZ
Answer these questions as best you can. You may find you’re hopelessly torn between two answers. If so, choose them both.
1. You’re about to have a major birthday or anniversary. You learn that a friend is throwing a surprise party. In your secret heart, you hope it will be:
a) an elegant affair at a fine restaurant or hotel
b) an all-night party with music and dancing
c) a high-spirited outdoor party with a picnic, swimming, games etc.
d) a lively gathering built around an event – a concert, sports match etc.
2. You’re at a lecture and the speaker makes a statement you are sure is inaccurate. There is a question and answer session afterwards. You would most likely:
a) say nothing but later mail a note to the speaker questioning the statement.
b) introduce yourself and discuss the issue after the lecture
c) discuss it with friends but don’t say anything to the speaker
d) bring up the issue during the question and answer session.
3. You’re celebrating Christmas with a large gathering of friends/family. Which two of the following jobs would you most enjoy doing?
a) setting the table
b) planning the music
c) preparing the food
d) building the fire
e) carving the turkey
f) selecting toasts or prayers
g) keeping the children entertained
h) organising after-dinner games
4. Of the following romantic gifts, which you most like to give or receive?
a) a dozen red roses
b) a balloon ride for two
c) a professional photograph of you, your loved one or your family
d) an engraved Rolex
5. You’ve won a fabulous holiday. Which one place would be your ideal temporary home?
a) a suite in an elegant little hotel in the centre of town, with excellent room service
b) a houseboat docked at a lively waterfront
c) a spacious cottage right on the beach
d) a suite in a modern big-city luxury hotel
e) an old-world villa
f) a farmhouse surrounded by orchards
g) a room in the home of an eccentric millionaire
6. You have bought a house which has a room that’s too small to be a bedroom. Would you like it to be:
a) a cedar-lined walk-in wardrobe
b) a dressing room
c) a creative studio
d) a gym
7. You’re at the end of a stressful day. Which of these scenarios sounds most appealing?
a) an evening alone with new videos, books, or mags
b) meeting with friends at a pub, club or restaurant
c) pottering in the garden
d) uninterrupted night of good TV
e) workout at the gym followed by sauna, steam etc
f) leisurely walk or bike ride
g) long motorbike ride
8. You are offered two wishes for yourself from the following list – which do you choose?
a) inner peace
9. In a card game you bet and lose one household appliance. Which would you sacrifice?
a) the microwave
b) the home security system
c) your mobile
d) the camcorder
10. You can choose a home to live – mortgage free – for the rest of your life. Which one of these options would you pick.
a) a renovated Georgian terrace in a leafy city square
b) a Gothic church in the middle of the city
c) a rambling country house by a lake
d) a luxury flat in a resort area
e) a modern house with a full glass wall overlooking the sea
f) a Victorian house with manicured lawns and a view of the ocean
g) a farm, with outbuildings and acres of land
h) a gutted factory along a city canal
Scoring: count up how many you have chosen of each letter. Combine your scores in this way:
A & F =
B & H =
C & G =
D & E =
If most of your answers were A & F you are most likely to be a VISIONARY
If most of your answers were B & H you are most likely to be an ADVENTURER
If most of your answers were C & G you are most likely to be an ARTISAN
If most of your answers were D & E you are most likely to be an IDEALIST
If you find you have almost equal scores in two categories you are probably a hybrid of the two. Some people find they score equally in almost all sections – this means you have a broad range of impulses and tendencies.
WHAT YOUR RESULT MEANS
The Visionary’s ideal world is a perfect private sanctuary full of beautiful things. Furnishings and accessories are unique; lighting is perfect; walls of bookshelves are filled with inspiring volumes; lovely things are everywhere.
Visionaries often seek to escape from other people and from the outside world. Everyday clutter and stress makes them feel exhausted – home helps them feel centred again.
KEY VISIONARY TRAITS
• you dislike purple but are fond of aubergine
• you can easily spend eight month searching for the perfect sofa
• you do the crossword puzzle in ink, with a fountain pen
• you open mail with a letter opener
• you have matching luggage
• you love antique furniture but hate second-hand clothes
The Artisan’s natural place is at the centre of the family – even if that family consists of friends, neighbours or half a dozen stray cats. Artisans strive for a life of simplicity, and they don’t depend on material things to make them happy. Although they may love shopping, decorating, and collecting they can, if necessary, get along with very little.
KEY ARTISAN TRAITS
• pets are allowed, even encouraged, on the bed
• you love car boot sales
• you can knit, crochet, tat or needlepoint
• you recycle and reuse everything you can
• you are always trying to declutter – often without success
• everyone gravitates towards your kitchen
Idealists are great planners – everything is plotted, from the holiday itinerary to life itself. They probably knew what they wanted to do from a very early age and started saving for their retirement at 21. Idealists place their faith in systems. They do not trust the world and so use tried-and-trusted methods. They set clear goals and strive for success by doing things the “right” way. Their homes run like clockwork and are never cluttered.
KEY IDEALIST TRAITS
• your DVDs are arranged in alphabetical order
• you know how to program every gadget your own (there are many)
• you always back up your hard drive
• you keep to a household budget
• the lights in your house are on dimmers, timers or motion detectors
• the words “impulse buy” are not in your vocabulary
“Anything but boredom” could be their motto. They thrive on sensory pleasure, intellectual challenges, human contact, sport and spiritual pursuits. They want action and they want it now. Adventurers dread missing out on anything. They believe in unlimited possibilities, they thumb their noses at the conventional and predictable; they love bending rules and breaking through boundaries. Home has to reflect their restless, exploratory nature.
KEY ADVENTURER TRAITS
• you have no idea what half the keys on your keyring are for.
• your car routinely runs out of petrol
• you’d rather wear fabulous fake jewellery than conservative real jewellery
• you have, at some point in your life, hitchhiked or picked up a hitchhiker
• you don’t dread large parties – only the small, intimate ones
• you can speak several languages or play several musical instruments – but can’t balance your cheque book.