Tips & Tricks Thursday – Accessorizing 101
Sometimes, the trickiest part of design is getting the details right. But those pesky details can help a space evolve from just a room into something truly special…
Here are some of my favorite tips and tricks for tackling said “pesky details”.
I’ve broken them down into three categories of, like, a jillion different possibilities…
1. CLASSIC and SYMMETRICAL
This is one of my favorite ways to accessorize a piece of furniture like a buffet or long consul table. It looks great in a formal living space (dining room / living room / etc.), but also adds sophistication to an entry or even a bedroom. The key is to keep it simple. You can’t go wrong with two lamps and a simple vignette in the center (think stacked books, collected boxes, or a vase of freshly cut flowers…). If your piece is against the wall, finish out the look by positioning some artwork or a mirror behind it.
Clean. Elegant. Timeless.
** Try placing a set of cross leg stools in front of your piece to complete the look. So effortlessly chic!
Same piece – just styled two different ways!
2. CLASSIC and ASYMMETRICAL
So this isn’t a stretch when I tell you that the way to accessorize with a more casual, but still classic look would be to opt for an asymmetrical approach. This style is all about visual balance. It can be incorporated on a consul, buffet, side table or bookshelf. Think about using books, vases, dishes, statues, candlesticks, photos… you get the idea. This approach isn’t necessarily a “collected” or layered look (that comes next!), but more of a simple, balanced feel.
** Some points to remember – Darker colors are more “visually” heavy, while lighter colors are, well, visually “lighter”. For example – you could balance a large, glass lamp with a small dark vase.
3. COLLECTED OVER TIME (a.k.a Eclectic / a.k.a Bohemian / a.k.a Awesome)
Okay, so I’m sure that you can tell that this style really strikes my fancy. I love the kind of “anything goes” approach here. But this, too, has some guidelines to help make your styling look chic and not cluttered (unless, of course, that’s the look you’re going for – in which case I would say, “more power to you”…).
Think about your objects in terms of groupings or clusters – with individual depth and dimension. Again, you can use anything from books and pictures, to dishes and plants, to fabric and jewelry. The key is layering. Build up height through stacking and depth through layering (Who says you can’t layer one picture over another?). Take some time and play around. No designer creates their vignette by setting objects on the first try (…or maybe I’m just the weird one and I’m totally outing myself here…). We fiddle, we swap out, we step back and tilt our head from side to side to see if we like it (…outing myself again…). We change things around and begin the process all over again.
** Think about a color palette – books with similar colors on their spines (or flip them around to expose the page side), pictures with similar color tones, objects that pull out some colors you have sprinkled around your room.
** You can easily ground any grouping or collection with the repeated use of black, white, or grey.
** Speaking of collections – group similar items like candlesticks, picture frames, books, vases…
** Don’t forget to mix in some metals! They’re your go-to neutral (…and I LOVE me some brass!)
** Think about texture – mix in shine with matte with natural fibers. Mixing textures will give your grouping dimension and interest.
** Plants add a great organic balance to a lot of straight lines and hard edges.
Here are some of my favorite grouping examples:
some symmetrical styling AND layering going on…
What are some of your favorite ways to accessorize? I’d love to hear about them!