While Terrie and I were on “work-cation” at my home (remember, she lives in Arizona and I live in Washington) our agenda included a lot of work on Your Decorating Hotline planning for the coming year, some play time, and some combined work and play time.
A previous post titled “Take Accessorizing To The Next Level” resulted from the combo time, as does today’s post . For both articles we shopped my house for a variety of accessories and then played, puttered and mixed our personal preferences to provide you examples of accessorized vignettes using what you have, but in new combinations.
I knew I wanted to use at least one of the large metal finial items I own and love since they were sitting unused – so they became our starting point. From there we gathered left over fabric, bottles, baskets, plates, candles, books and what ever was within reach and seemed interesting to either Terrie or me. We spread our treasures across the living room floor and set to work transforming a large corner table.
We placed one of the metal finials on a stack of large books in order to elevate it above its partner to create varied heights. Then we added a plate decorated in tones reflecting the finals – it sits on a clear stand to the right of the finials. For a splash of color we added a green terrarium highlighted in a coppery color so it worked well with both the plate and finials.
As the top of the table started to take shape we realized the bottom looked bare and large because the table base (actually a very large garden urn topped with a 48″ piece of glass) narrowed dramatically. To balance the numerous items on the table top we placed a metal trunk at the table base and filled it with greens. It brought some of the metal seen in the finials and some of the green of the terrarium to the floor and visually filled the empty space below the glass.
As we stepped back and studied the table top, we realized there needed to be more contrast in height between the finials, so gathered some more books to raise one even higher. Also, the big expanse of glass was feeling a bit cold and we didn’t like having all the books exposed.
To reduce the amount of reflective glass and to tie all of the table top accessories together we draped a remnant of fabric over the books and flowed it toward the front of the table. The print includes some of the same colors seen in the drapes and carpet and the pattern is a smaller scale than the drapery print. To reduce the amount of plain, flat green space presented by the inside floor of the terrarium we added handfuls of rocks – some polished, some not. And expanding on the organic, natural feel of the rocks, we placed a wooden burl bowl on its side next to the terrarium. You can see how its colors tie to the rocks and the fabric.
It tickled our fancy to add a feather as texture to break up the smooth finish of the bowl and we experimented with dropping a few rocks from the terrarium onto the fabric too.
We nixed the scattered rocks on the fabric; we put them back into the aquarium and placed the bowl in it’s normal sitting position with the feather in front of it. It was good to experiment but we both decided the bowl was more interesting on its side so we propped it up once again and repositioned the feather.
We placed two small glass votive candle holders to the front edge of the terrarium and added some greens in in front of the plate. We decided the candles looked good (and would be pretty highlighting the terrarium at night) but we thought the greens were maybe too ‘expected’ and decided to try a few more of our treasures in their place.
We tried a wicker covered bottle for color and texture and we liked it better than the greens but it still didn’t fit the bill. Although we didn’t discuss it at the time, I think part of the reason we didn’t like the bottle is its tall narrow silhouette is too similar to the finials; we needed another shape. We moved on to the next accessory in our gathered stash.
The drum shape of the shaker box is a nice contrast to the square plate and references the shape of the votive candles. The jolt of color also picked up color from the fabric and drapes creating better unity in the grouping. This piece felt good to both of us so we declared it a “keeper.”
Now we stepped back so we could look at the overall arrangement instead looking at it piece by piece. We decided we liked the look of everything from the “front” of the table but since the table is in a corner, we needed to check it from the side seen as you enter the room.
The display worked for us from the other angle also. We liked the mix of textures, shapes and colors and the items cascaded nicely to the box on the floor.
Here’s another look at our now well-dressed corner table, created completely with items gathered from around the house. We loved how the newly hung artwork helped fill the corner and finish it beautifully. The darker tones in the plaques tie to the darker chest on the floor acting as brackets for the lighter setting in between. Also, notice how the top of the pictures line up with the door opening. Using existing architectural elements as a guidline when hanging art keeps the room more cohesive.
Fun With Accessories
We had so much fun spending a couple of hours playing and creating. It was a great collaboration and we hope this illustration helps you see how creating a vignette in your home is a process of evolution – and that there is often more than one right answer for the design.
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