There is so much I love about the above photo. The mix of moods, sheens, art. It helps that the floor is painted gloss white, the bureau is a worn but elegant antique and that there are stacks of books on vintage garden chairs pulled in from outdoors. I found this image in a design book published in 2008 which you might be very familiar with; Domino, The Book of Decorating. There are so many wonderful tips and and insights that it verges on a bible of sorts. I found it in my local library while returning a book. It has been quite a while since I perused libraries for inspiration. When I first started designing home decor, searching for inspiration in books was a huge part of the process. Art and design books from the '20s and before are a treasure trove of ideas.
Accessories are an important component of the decorating equation. Clearly, the homeowner in this first image has a knack for pulling together a lot of disparate components. Finding the right accessories can be a challenge which is why the maxim "Buy what you love" strikes true. Last week I took a whirlwind trip to High Point with the goal of soaking up some inspiration. I was not disappointed. I snagged a couple of cool accessories for the showroom and kept a few for myself.
Why do some accessories blend seamlessly into our lives and others, no matter how much we try, seem out of place? Below are some thoughts on achieving a thoughtful balance of functional pieces and the accessories that make a room unique.
Elements That Relate.
Paper Mache is a favorite art form. I stumbled on antique bowls and figurines made of paper mache on my trip to High Point. The paper mache bowl on the mantel below is a perfect match to the antique framed portrait, Similarly, the pink flowers mix well with the dynamic pink ice bucket. Qualities like texture and color should be considered when adding accessories to a room.
Another way an accessory can contribute to a room's appeal is by introducing something that is unlike anything else in the room. This modern felt sculpture in a vibrant hue is a wonderful accent. and in stark contrast to the surrounding antiques.
Accessories can also accentuate the mood the room evokes. A simple work of art like the colorful squares below is the perfect addition to a minimalist room like this one below. Likewise, this swan is a soft touch in a room and enhances the romantic, ethereal vibe.