This really hit me hard in the head today. I was going through a design proposal with a client couple this morning when I came to realise how, in any home design, the concern of being ‘too masculine' or 'too feminine' always exists. While he may be thinking grey, she could be thinking pink! Though I don't know how often the opposite happens...
Even as certain experiences might make one realise and truly appreciate the differences in style and design between the sexes, one thing that's for sure is that men and women have radically different tastes and likings - it's the balancing of those differences that makes for a good design scheme. Is this a case of stereotype more than anything else? Just like in fashion, who ever said that pink is a 'feminine' colour, and any self-respecting men had better not be caught wearing it?
Stereotype or not, I have been making my own observations of my clients all this while, and the common notions of what each sex likes are still proven time and time again. The most classic is in the use of floral prints and patterns. Men, in general, shun these and opts for plain or neutral prints of stripes or checks, although I somehow managed to get them to go for florals at times too.
As earlier mentioned, women generally prefer pretty pastels such as pink, lilac, powder blue, butter yellow, peach or purple. I still haven't encountered any women who dislike any of those colours yet. But the pleasant fact is that they can accept cool greys and blacks just as easily too. Try getting the men to paint that room pink or lavender.
As well, men tends to put function before form, which is not a bad thing until some of them decided to forgo form altogether in the name of function! Is this another case of women having a better sense of (or placing more emphasis on) aesthetics than men?
While I don't mean for the above to be taken as strong design statements, they are true to a certain extent, at least here in Singapore. I've seen too many examples. And until the day comes when more men wear pink, I guess playing by these rules is still considered a much safer bet, isn't it?