Design:

How to Style Decorative Objects to Bring Sentiment and Soul Home

Words by Langa Chinyoka.

Like a work of art, good design is always in the details. The smallest choices can transform a space into something magical and joyful if they signify their emotional value. Filling your home with decorative objects that make you and your space come alive is an opportunity to play with form and creativity—to take the rules, then break them, and eventually create your own. From your coffee tables to your mantels, and even your kitchen counters, every surface in your home can add movement and vitality while expressing your individuality. 

Decorative objects aren’t just meaningless pretty things. They are the crux of creativity in the home, and they are crucial to tie together the narrative a space tells at first glance. This object d’art, vintage vessels, and artisanal rarities help create a sense of flow in a room, guiding your eye from one vignette to the next, and adding a spark of intrigue with each new hint of color, texture, and shape. Choosing which items you bring into each is a small declaration of yourself. But how to style decorative objects is the question. How do you choose which objects to display? And how can you tell the difference between creativity and clutter? Discernment is a key virtue of this process.

How to Style Decorative Objects to Bring Sentiment and Soul Home

By taking your time to curate a selection of decorative objects that are both stylish and sentimental, you breathe new life into even the most unexpected corners. A carefully placed sculpture can spark creativity whenever you pass it, while an intentionally designed coffee table can dictate the central feeling of the whole room. Finding a natural flow does not come easy, but with time, consideration, and practice listening to your gut, every piece in your home will conjure emotion and tell a story. 

Keep reading for our tips on how to choose and style decorative objects to elevate your home!

How to Style Decorative Objects to Bring Sentiment and Soul Home

Find a Balance Between Purpose and Personality

When choosing decorative objects, practice patience. The play between practicality and personality is a delicate dance that every item contributes to. Rushing to fill up empty spaces might tempt you to buy pieces that have no emotional weight. First, consider function. Is there a way you can add a design element to the core pieces you need and use? A dark corner can become home for a whimsical candle arrangement, or the right soap dish on a kitchen sink can elevate the most mundane tasks. Don’t be afraid to bring unconventional accessories into the space—these are the moments that will stand out the most. Your enigmatic choices tell the story of your taste and make your home feel unique.

Consider the Rule of Three

While we don’t subscribe to most rules, the rule of three is a good one to be mindful of. In general, grouping items in three creates dynamism, making for a more visually interesting composition. Letting this guide your vignettes, you can create different rhythms by selecting pieces with contrasting heights, depths, and colors to engage the eye. Play is essential here. Don’t be afraid of asymmetry or taking risks—the rule of three allows you to bring balance to your bolder choices without falling into monotonous symmetry. This technique also works across a room. Repeating similar motifs three times in a space connects each separate surface into one cohesive story.

Design for Your Life

There’s no use designing for a life you don’t live. Consider how you want to live in a space, then work from there. Which places do you gravitate to? What functional pieces do you need? Being intentional about how you want the space to feel should guide how it looks. Start with function, then bring in elements of whimsy and romance, unashamedly. Juxtapose your cozy corners with harder, natural decorative objects, or play with light and form in your less trafficked areas. Choose accessories candlesticks, catchalls, and bowls to anchor a tablescape then play with the surrounding composition for an elegant dance between purpose and style. It’s your home, not a magazine spread, and good design is that which fits in with your life.

Embrace Change

Embrace the enigmatic! Part of the magic of styling is its malleability—nothing is ever stuck in one place. You get to switch up the vibe of the space whenever you want, and often just by moving around your decorative objects. No dramatic overhaul necessary! Let yourself refresh your space as your lifestyle changes, as you add new pieces, or as you get tired of the old layout. The golden rule of styling is not to get too attached. Embrace the inevitability of change and allow yourself to be as dynamic as your design. Don’t be afraid to improvise and try, try, try again!

SHOP OUR CURATED SELECTION OF DECORATIVE OBJECTS:

Antique Terra Cotta Urns. A-Pair

Put your own spin on the terracotta trend with vintage vessels. The details that emerge as they age and patina make them one of a kind.

Vintage Wabi Sabi Clay Pot

Embrace the wabi-sabi mindset and aesthetic by celebrating the imperfections and wear in this antique pot. The earthy tones of this rich red clay are perfect for brightening up a neutral color palette.

Claude Home Dege Vase by Willem Van Hooff

Unexpected shapes make for a dynamic addition to any vignette.

Pair of old brass metal candlesticks

Candlesticks are our favorite way to bring in light and verticality, and these raise the bar with the irresistibly tactile surface and verdigris hue.

Terrain Barnacle Vase

Nothing adds depth and soul quite like a patinaed object or vessel.

Extra Large Selenite log

Selenite cleanses the energy while the tall tower shape is perfect for grounding any composition. Stack two or three together on a coffee table, bookshelf, or on the floor in a meditation room.

H&M Home Small Mirror with Marble Base

Mirrors make things appear larger than they seem but this one also adds decorative flair with its textured marble base.

Sphere Incense Holder by Brendan Tadler

Don’t underestimate the power of scent. This travertine sphere incense censer acts as a quiet object to stimulate creativity and focus while sitting pretty.

Patrick Wyss

Looking for organic, abstract shapes in natural materials brings an element of the outside in while diversifying your space.

Studio Yanko Vasilev Ceramic Sculpture

Abstract forms and figurative sculptures break up hard lines and sharp edges with their round curves and unexpected shapes.

Set of 2 Mid Century Small Ornate Frame Mirrors

Mix and match different periods to create juxtaposition in a space or vignette. An antiqued mirror on a kitchen shelf sets off the contemporary ceramic dinnerware.

Amber Interiors Carved Stone Bowl

Handcrafted from stone, this one-of-a-kind piece has a naturally aged patina that will add texture to any styling moment. Fill it with sand and turn it into an incense holder.

Aged Iron Column Bud Vase

You simply can't go wrong with an antique vessel in an aged iron—oh the stories she could tell!

Secret by Ghezzi Agerskov for WING Design Gallery

Mix and match varying surface textures and materials to create visual diversity. The combination of the onyx with the stone is intriguing and beckons the eye closer.

Claude Home Travertine Catch-All

Lovers of 80s decor and vintage Italian design will flock to this timeless travertine catch-all. Your nick-nacks have never been more stylish.

Tunisian Clay Beads

Fashion and design merge with these natural beads. Drape them anywhere for instant color and texture.

Loewe Honeysuckle small scented candle, 170g

Add a pop of color with this buttery yellow hue. It’s so pretty, you won’t want to burn it.

Amber Interiors Rundu Marble Bowl

Crafted from red marble, this stunning raw-edged bowl doubles as storage and a standalone decoration.

Dried Tumbleweed

Add contrast to your floral arrangements with dried flowers and grasses. This tumbleweed brings unexpected volume for a unique way to bridge the inside and out.

Athena Calderone x Beau Rush Ceramics Petit Footed Bowl

The right ceramic bowl holds the whole vignette together. Could it get any more perfect than this collaboration by Athena and Beau Rush?

Jayson Home Vintage Brick Mold

Experiment with different uses for surprising vintage finds, like this brick mold from Jayson Home. Use it for storage, display, or whatever else your imagination can muster.

CB2 ANKA BLUE ONYX OBJECT

The sleekness of the curves, the lightness of the marble—you can’t go wrong.

Jean Royère Hardcover

Books are classic decorative objects, especially when they inspire your imagination with their contents.

Montana Labelle Terracotta Bobble Bowl 2.0

These terracotta beauties are the perfect piece for your kitchen island, bookcase or console table styling to add texture, intrigue, and personality.

Live Beautiful hardcover

Design books with intriguing covers double as decoration just like Athena’s Live Beautiful tome.

Montana Labelle Jade Green Marble Mushroom

This hand-carved marble mushroom adds a unique decorative touch to a desk, tabletop, bookshelf, or side table.

H&M Home Large Glass Vase

Organic shapes will always make us swoon. We can see orchids or fresh branches spilling out of this beauty.

Share this Swoon   –  

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