Sunday, March 1, 2020

Don't Sweat, it's Just a Vignette

Different Heights and Levels

When you are building a vignette, you are trying to lead the eye through your display. Taller items pull the eye in, and shorter items draw and hold the view downward. Remember that they eye is drawn to bright colors as well, so keep that in mind when you are creating. Draw an imaginary line over the area you want to create and then arrange your items accordingly.

Use books, small pedestals or interesting boxes to add height to items that just aren’t high enough.

Odd numbers

It’s true in gardening, it’s true in art and it’s true here too. Odd always trumps even. Odd groupings or numbers of items add interest to your display. This is a rule that can be broken depending on the way the visual line falls, but generally holds true for most things. Keep it odd.

Throw some Light on it

Doesn’t do you any good to create a beautiful display if it’s hidden in darkness. If you want to draw attention to it, don’t hide it in the shadows. Decorators have always known this, making sure that lighting falls directly onto works on art or special features within a room. Put your best picks under a lamp or near a window. If you can’t afford to light specific areas that are great for displays, like bookshelves, make sure the back panel of the shelf is a lighter color, a semi-gloss paint or consider leaning mirrors against the back to reflect light into the shadowy areas.

Vary the depth

One of the mistakes that lots of folks make is to put their items all in a single line. Even if you are varying the heights of your objects, it’s not interesting if everything is all in a row. Push some of your items to the back, bring others to the front, remembering to vary your heights, colors and textures along the way.

Create a theme

It helps to create a theme when building displays. This doesn’t mean that if you are highlight a set of Harry Potter wands that you have to build an entire vignette dedicated to the book series, but you could throw the wands next to the books and a couple of other features that may look antique or mystical. Below the wands sit next to a carved mirror and a modern chess clock. While the chess clock may seem out of place, it’s not an ordinary household item which lends it some interest in the display.

Sometimes you can create a theme just by using muted colors or earth tones, or collections of items. Consider creating a display that tells a story. A set of weathered books, a crystal bowl on top and a pair of antique spectacles leaned against them all carry a sort of “intellectual” theme, making them similar although they are different things.

Find objects you love and you'll always love your results

The final rule, and yes, I’m calling it a rule is only buy objects you love or use objects that mean something to you. Whether it’s your Grandfather’s cigar box or just a bottle brush fox that you think is absolutely adorbs, don’t display it unless you love it. If you only display things that mean something and that you love to look at, it will all come together because you are the common denominator.

Stir it Up

Have fun and change it up. We have a friend that comments, that we always have “something new” every time she comes to the house. We actually don’t purchase new (or new to us) things very often, but I am easily bored and am frequently moving things around from one place to another. It looks like we have new stuff all the time, keeps our decor fresh and interesting and keeps me from being bored. Winner, winner, chicken dinner!

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