Skip to main content

Mix'n'Match 101 | Playing with Contrast and Getting Your Eclectic On

via
Back in the day, I was once a queen of coordination.  Ideas like "mixing and matching" and "contrast" made me a little jittery.  From my clothing choices to my bedroom decor, I liked the colors and styles to coordinate.  Luckily, I grew out of that.  The older I've gotten, the more I've enjoyed getting my eclectic on.  Eclectic decor is freeing.  It's fun.  And these rooms that I've rounded up show just how lovely eclectic can be.  

Like in the photo above. It's a prime example of making mixing and matching work.  There's a bit of a color scheme to start with---the red and white bedding, the red and white curtains, and the red chair.  But there's baby blue thrown in here, and sunny yellow thrown in over there.  And blue and yellow thrown onto the big vintage sign on the wall.  The contrast really comes in with the furniture.  The red leather chair is contemporary and sleek... while the nearby ivory dresser is shabby chic.  The curtains and bedding are cottagey... the sign is vintage cool.  It all comes together to create an interesting and beautiful space!

via
I adore this eclectic yet very feminine corner.  The plush French settee gets a pop of color and pattern with yellow ikat pillows.  The upholstered bench is held up by elegant, spindly legs... while the floor lamp's base mimics a tree limb (painted gold, of course).  The floating shelves display an array of eclectic objects---pretty books, dog bookends, different vases, art and prints, and a rather masculine clock.  

via
Oh, how I wish this living room were mine!  Where to begin?  There's a whole modpodge of mixing and matching on the couch with all those patterned pillows.  Furniture styles contrast, too---an industrial cart holding magazines, a shabby cottage style stool nearby, a vintage printed ottoman.  And then an array of contrasting mirrors on the wall---traditional rectangular, thick circle, dainty oval, bold pink frame.  My favorite part is the unexpected white Moroccan-style chandelier hanging overhead everything.

via
Mixing and matching doesn't have to a daunting task.  It doesn't need to be extreme contrast to get the desired look either.  In this case, we have a beautiful traditional wooden desk with clean lines and a rather masculine look.  A black leather chair or wooden chair would look right at home pulled up to it.  But partner it up with a striking white chair with a few extra curves... and you've got a match made in contrast heaven.  The unexpected couple makes other subtle contrasts blend right in---stark technology next to natural textured baskets, a modern frame next to an antique one, and (of course) a modpodge of controlled creative chaos on the inspiration board.

via
Eclectic can be done with just a little touch.  This room would seem rather pulled together and coordinated... if it weren't for the kitschy gnome nightstand.  It brings the antique bed, tribal rug, and bedding colors to life and adds a dash of humor.  Every room could use a little funny. 

via
Eclectic can also be done overboard... in a good way.  And the easiest route to such a style is all in the artwork and accessories.  Fill a wall with a wide variety of frames and art---photos, prints, book pages, paintings, posters, drawings, sketches.  And flood surfaces with interesting tchotchkes.

via
Or do eclectic on the downlow.  At first glance, this room is quite coordinated.  The fuchsia is repeated throughout and even on larger scale pieces, really tying everything together.  But if you take a closer look, you see a lot of different patterns and ideas.  Stripes and florals.  Photography and different styles of art.  Contemporary furniture and vintage furniture.  A splash of goldenrod.  An emerald-green hued box.  

I guess this post is to confuse to go out on a limb and play around with your decorating a little!  You don't have to buy the color- and pattern-coordinated room sets at department stores. Your room will just look exact like it came off the pages of a catalog.  Infuse your personality into the space and let it be a little different.  Try things out to see what works and what doesn't.  When you get it right---when all of the contrast seems to just balance everything out---you'll know.  And your space will be fabulously mixed'n'matched.  


Comments

Lucy said…
SO many pretty rooms. It makes me want to own a mansion so I can go for a different style in every room!

Makeup for Biochemists

xx

POPULAR POSTS:

DIY Cat Barrier for Under $100 (See-Through, Climb-Proof, and Too-Tall-To-Jump)

ICYMI: I gave up Cotton after deciding that after trying so many things, my two adopted cats Dahlia and Cotton were just never going to get along. Long story short: I missed her. And Cotton's back. And Dahlia's not going anywhere. My heart is big enough to keep trying. And my apartment is big enough that if I need to keep them separated long term (or permanently), it can be done.
I'm going to write-up a separate post about some of the solutions I've tried, how they worked, who they worked on, and what I'll be trying next. But in this post, I wanted to share the main 'piece de resistance' of having both cats in my apartment: an un-climbable, un-jumpable, see-through barrier to separate Cotton and Dahlia.

Aria's Room | Pretty Little Liars Decor

Welcome back for LU's 2nd room in the PLL series!  Today you're getting a glimpse into my favorite room on the show... Aria's room.  Aria Montgomery is the artistic, imaginative, bookworm of the bunch.  So it's no surprise that her room has an artsy, historic, romantic eclecticism atmosphere.  Plus, it's full of books.  My two words for Aria's attic space: Vintage Eclectic.  (Those happen to be my two favorite decorating words... so brace yourself for my soon-to-come swooning.)

Pencil It In | Working the Pencil Skirt into Your Work Attire, Including 25 Examples with Do's and Don'ts

Starting this week, every Wednesday on The Lovely Side will be devoted to wardrobe, hair, and beauty content.  With summer internships right around the corner and interviews for real world jobs looming as well, I thought now would be a good time to delve into the world of office fashion.  
Sarah, a reader, recently emailed me asking about how to style a pencil skirt for her "somewhat casual, somewhat professional workplace full of fashionable co-workers."  She's been lusting after pencil skirts at several stores, but been hesitant to purchase one for fear of looking bad in it and not knowing what to wear with it.