I'm personally not that interested in how our house is decorated and I've told my wife that. This bugs her.
She doesn't want the responsibility of totally deciding what colors to paint the walls of the new home we're moving into this coming April '08. She wants my input about the carpets and kitchen cupboards, ceramic tile and hardwood. She values my opinion about what type of new living room and dining area furniture we should get.
I'm glad that she does appreciate and even need to hear what I think about all of these things. I've told her that whatever she wants to do in the entire house is up to her and fine by me unless I think she's about to do something that's going to look ugly to me or embarrassing in some way. She was considering some horrible ceramic tile and I told her I would be ashamed and embarrassed to have ANYBODY over with that in the house. Many times I don't have an opinion about what she wants to do because I trust her judgment and it's usually very good. But sometimes I just have to let her know that she's about to make a big mistake as far as I'm concerned. She respects my honesty and I'm not afraid to let her know what I think.
There is one room in the house which I have reserved for me decision wise and that is our non-dedicated recroom/theater. It will serve as dual use/purpose but my wife understands that this is finally my big chance to have a room that is the closest I will probably ever come to a dedicated home theater. I've told her nicely that I believe it is more than fair for me to decorate this room the way I see fit since I've given her carte blanche with regards to the rest of the home. I believe that she sees this.
However, I do ask for her input because I respect and value her opinion. She doesn't completely understand the nuances of home theater but then again neither do I although I'm ahead of her in this. She knows I don't want reflections washing out the contrast on the screen. We discussed flat paints and both agreed that it's extremely hard to keep clean because it shows fingerprints etc..., especially black so I decided to go to a satin or eggshell which is supposed to be almost as good. She would prefer that I don't go entirely black and I agree. I don't want a cave so we're going with black front and back walls, black ceiling and trim and the side walls and three doors will be brown. The carpet will be black with a pattern in it.
This gives me everything I want in a theater as far as floor, wall and ceiling treatments go. My wife also knows that I will be wanting to block out all light from the three windows. She gets it. It's my hobby and other than this my needs are relatively simple and I don't think that I ask for much.
When we were house hunting it was important to me that my wife finally have the ensuite and walk in closet that she's always wanted. Same with the hardwood floors and ceramic tile. I think that it's also important to her that I be happy with the recroom. She does ask that I make it such that she won't be depressed whenever she goes into that room. For her, a really dark room won't be inviting. I get this. It's her room too because it's not dedicated and we'll be watching a flat panel TV in this room when the pj isn't on. So I've tried to make my decisions with her in mind. If I have the front and back walls, ceiling and carpet and trim black, I can 'compromise' with painting the side walls a color that she likes but is still fairly non reflective and yet still theater like.
So it comes down to give and take. Sometimes I give more than I take and other times it's vice versa.
If there's something that she objects to there's usually a good reason like not enough money.
Sometimes she just thinks I'm crazy but she has her idiosyncrasies too and she is aware of this as well.
Bottom line? We respect each other and don't demand things of one another. She does give me the final say but I rarely need to use it! Most times the final say belongs to both of us. We come to an agreement mutually. When that's not possible, then it depends on how important the issue is to either herself or me. She will defer to me if I insist but again, I rarely need this. I have learned over our 13 years of marriage that sometimes the harder I insist on having my own way or being 'right', I couldn't be more wrong. Ego plays a part here too. I just don't like being wrong.
Sorry for the long post.
Hopefully it might help someone.