March 11, 2016
Knowing how much work we have put into our home, I felt pretty good hearing their stamp of approval, as you can imagine.
That started me thinking about how this visual appeal was achieved in our home. Creating visually appealing displays is not difficult. It is simply taking your every day and, or, cherished items and placing them in a way that is pleasing to your eye.
Some of my best ideas have probably come from merchandising in retail stores. I have an idea for a multiple clock display on a high blank wall in the family room. Kirkland’s had a display with several large clocks suspended from the ceiling, which was so appealing, it seemed a good idea to create a similar display. My thought is to hang them on the wall but overlapping them like the display at Kirkland’s. A collection of clocks is in the process…
Arranging things to create a display with special pieces and adding a few more mundane things to complement them can make the end product look like a million bucks. This is a personal thing and there is no wrong way to do it. If it pleases you, that is what is important.
However, there are some principles of arranging things that can be followed to be more successful.
1. There is power in numbers. A grouping of similar items gives them an importance they wouldn’t have on their own. We have a collection of Santa’s, which are displayed on the sideboard each Christmas. these, spread around the entire house, would not be as impressive as displayed en masse in one spot.
The boys have an Indian arrowhead collection. Attaching several of the arrowheads to a burlap covered cardboard and displaying them in a shadowbox frame gave them more impact.
If you have a collection, displaying the items all together makes a more powerful statement.
2. Lifts and levels create a more interesting arrangement. Lifts and levels can be made from an endless variety of things. Books are one of my favorite things to use as a lift, which is shown in the first picture of the fireplace mantel. Boxes can be used to elevate an item which needs a little more height. Lifts and levels can even be made of cardboard and covered, which I shared in an earlier post. Click here ►DIY Lifts and Levels.
Consider using lifts and levels to create a pleasing arrangement or vignette. Imagine a buffet where all the food platters are placed on a table lined up in a row. Then consider the last time you went to an event at a nice hotel where the food was presented on a variety of different elevations. The latter was so much more impressive, right?
3. Grouping things which have a similar theme is an easy way to create an appealing display. A display of several nautical items, vintage items, or sports memorabilia would all make interesting displays. In this picture, a love of Asian inspired things is displayed along with a couple of vintage books and a vintage book box.
4. Grouping things together which have an importance to you can also create an appealing display. This display is on top of the armoire in a guest bedroom now. The room used to be our youngest daughters and now her daughter, Sophia, says it is her room.
The squirrel, the little bird, and the vase of flowers were part of an arrangement on the food display table for Tiffany’s baby shower. The Samantha doll was a Christmas gift when she was little. The picture is my favorite of her daughter, Sophia. in our kitchen wearing a little sundress and a hat. They all have special meaning and I love seeing them displayed.
5. Color is a great unifier. Grouping a bunch of items of one color together unites them. An arrangement of all white items can be a striking display, but a beautiful display of all blue dishes or pottery would make a statement, too.
The eye goes to color. You can use that knowledge to pull a room together with color using knick-knacks, pillows, curtains, blankets, and accessories, and distributing them evenly around the room.
6. Scale is very important. Our family room has over a 16-foot ceiling. Imagine a display of tea cups across the ledge which stretches above the fireplace and spans the width of the room. Although using tea cups is a slight exaggeration, you get the point, right? It didn’t take long to realize whatever we put up on that ledge has to be on a grander scale.
Although the armoire is over six feet tall, it screamed for something with more height to help balance the fireplace wall and the tall ceiling. Because of the visual weight of the dark bird cage and the similar colors, the eye follows up the armoire and extends to the top of the bird cage, giving the armoire more height and presence.
Notice that all of the fresh air vents in our home have been painted the same color as the wall. They visually go away, blend into the background, or at least, don’t command attention!
I have a tendency to make displays balanced rather than asymmetrical. It seems to me that there is comfort in symmetry. Our home is rather traditional, but these basic concepts can be applied to any style.
This was the spring display on the mantel last year. Side note – I love orchids. Aren’t they beautiful? If you would like to read my thought process as this display was put together, click here ►Spring Display.
Creating visually appealing displays is not difficult and makes for a much cozier and interesting home. Using these tips, You Can Create Visually Appealing Displays Easily!