Accessories are what give an inside soul and help differentiate a house from a furniture showroom. When accessories are done correctly, they tell the story of their owners’ lives — their passions, their journeys … and maybe their heartbreak. But accessorizing a house can be a scary thing. We’re often unsure what to include, what to leave out and how to arrange the things that remain. Fear not. As soon as you realize the fundamentals, accessorizing could be a snap.
Look around your house, attic, basement and lawn for possible accessories. At times it’s not the thing itself, however you exhibit it, that counts. Frequent objects like stones, shells or pinecones make great accessories — if you gather enough of them and display them in an attractive bowl. Arrange costume jewelry onto a tray or fill out a bowl with decorative matchbooks. The next time you travel, skip the T-shirt shop and head for the antiques shop, craft gallery or flea market. You’ll come home with something appealing and a story to go with this.
The bottom line: If you have fun with your own accessories, your loved ones and friends will get pleasure from them, also. Check out more information and find more inspiration beneath.
Christopher Burns Interiors
Avoid placing like things at opposite ends of a fireplace mantel. (Imagine how boring that this mantel could have been if one candlestick sat on each end.) Rather, rely on clusters of objects to balance one another. Propped and overlapped photos feel much more casual and curated than artwork that is hung, and in this instance help unite the vignettes on each end of the mantel.
Kerrie L. Kelly
Avoid dispersing individual accessories round a space. Organize them in groups, combining items that share an identical palette, texture or character. Unless you’re dealing with a collection of indistinguishable objects, change the size of the pieces and lean toward having an odd number for each vignette so things do not get too symmetrical or matchy-matchy. Organize the items in a pyramid, from highest to lowest, with the tallest thing in back. If an item is small, group it with other small things on a tray or in a bowl. If it’s too low, set it beneath a decorative box or books.
Paul Davis Architects
Unless you are living in a library, combine accessories with books. (Only keep the paperbacks from the bedroom or someplace inconspicuous.) If you do not own books, purchase some in a yard sale or library purchase — they do wonders to warm up a room and are one of the least expensive accessories you can find.
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Do not forget the anchor. The candles with this coffee table anchor the arrangement and are surrounded by objects of descending size. Small things are grouped onto a tray, so they have a collective existence. The bowl of apples functions just like fresh blossoms — it makes this feel as a “living” structure rather than something that was put here two decades back and never touched.
Tiffany Eastman Interiors, LLC
Pay attention to scale. Your arrangement should not be too large or too puny for the surface it’s on. And do not feel as though you have to fill every tabletop — the eye needs a chance to rest, also.
Since all 3 things on this particular coffee table are roughly the same size, the coral was set atop a stack of books to stagger the peaks. Notice how the book jackets pick up the color of the vase and the seat cushion.
Group objects that share a common character, while it’s a unifying color, finish or texture. In this instance the figure, skull, box and bowl all share a similar color palette and feel of history — as does the tortoise shell out on the coffee table.
Julie Ranee Photography
If you’re a collector, do not hide your fire in a neart. Group items together on shelves or tabletops, or display them on a wall. (Unless the objects are delicate or valuable, prevent curio cabinets, which frequently look fusty and inhibit interaction.) Combining lots of like matters gives them a collective weight that they would not have individually. The collections do not have to be matters of great value, either, as shown by this display of straw hats.
Know that almost anything can look great if you set enough of them together. If you’ve got a restricted number of great pieces, throw in a couple of imposters; you can always replace the affordable examples with better ones as you acquire them.
Echo an accent color. If your chamber has a dominant accent color, echo it in the drapes to tie the space together. Here the orange of the walls is repeated in the vases, and also in some of the coral. On the foreground table, notice how a footed bowl provides the coral height and scattering the arrangement.
Tracy Murdock Allied ASID
Keep your eyes amused. Here’s another example where the accessories select up the dominant accent color in the room and give your eye someplace to travel. The glass compotes on the coffee table make even ordinary objects appear special.
Look for equilibrium. Interior designer Jay Jeffers knows his way around an accessory! I like how he used the sculpture to equilibrium the lamp onto the console table here, and also the artwork group to equilibrium the tall picture and help bridge the space between the furniture and the ceiling in what is obviously a tall space.
Be open to surprise. When an everyday thing is taken out of context and treated as a work of art, it can take on special significance. This old scale is now part of a still life. I’ve seen people decorate with vintage microscopes, scissors — even old lawn sprinklers. The only limit is the creativity.