Tuesday, July 5, 2011

How Do You Accessorize?

Chinese Green Teal Pottery via Giannetti Home

How do you accessorize your home? Sounds like a dumb question, but think about it. Are you about quality or quantity?If you have ever really studied a well designed room, you'll notice that the accessories make or break the space. Too many and it's cluttered. To little and it doesn't look lived in. Just the right amount and the right items makes it perfect! And, if you're like me, you struggle with buying accessories. I don't know why, but for some reason I have a hard time putting money down on things that are there just to look "pretty". Guess that's my practical side coming out. I also don't like clutter. I've got Lego's, trains, matchbox cars, etc. to accomplish that! (Have I said that before?)

Do you use a lot of accessories or do you have a few meaningful pieces? I'm one of the latter. Clutter drives me nuts so I like a few carefully chosen pieces at the right price. For me to really feel the need to spend money on an accessory it has to be one of four things:
  1. It's BEAUTIFUL and I just can't live without it,
  2. It accomplishes a purpose other than collecting dust,
  3. It's dirt cheap or an unbelievable find,
  4. I have a certain spot to put it. No spot, no buy!
Don't get me wrong. I love beautiful accessories and could window shop for them all day long, but practically speaking, you have to admit they are there just to look pretty most of the time. Which means, they aren't a need...they are a want. And, having a limited budget for wants, I have to prioritize. I talk myself out of stuff constantly like that! I am getting better, though. I've learned to not ALWAYS walk away from something I like just because I can't justify the "need" for it. I've kicked myself one too many times for not getting something. For instance...the other day I found beautiful wall mount wrought iron garden hose holders marked down to 60% off - $11 and there were only three left! We have needed something to corral those snakes for a long time, but I started to walk away because it's a "want". Then I came back and got one. Then I got back out of the car and came back for a second (we have two hoses) knowing I'd never find one again if I didn't. I'd be kicking myself AGAIN.

Another part of my problem is that I studied marketing and advertising with a passion. I worked in the market place as well as the manufacturing side. I always assumed it was common sense and everyone knew that the only way you can afford to sell something is to make a profit on it, but have learned that isn't so. As a general rule, you're paying more than (fill in the blank) is really worth. That's not always the case...like when you're paying for a quality piece of furniture that has been lovingly hand painted (hint, hint) and a tremendous amount of time invested in it. But, most things out there are mass produced are insanely marked up in price. Being so acutely aware of this, I'm a hard sell. Plus, the pieces I do buy I want to serve a purpose...be it visual or practical.

That's why I love flea markets, auctions, thrift stores, yard/garage/tag sales, and free stuff. I know that a lot of times you can get awesome stuff for a fraction of what you'd pay retail (and most of the time people have no idea how much stuff is really "worth").
Let me show you some of my favorite designers who really are great at accessorizing (granted a stylist is usually involved for photo shoots, but you get the idea).

Brooke Giannetti Design
Notice the limited use of "stuff" but what is there is well picked and placed for maximum impact.

Another shot of the same room by Brooke Giannetti.

Another one of Brooke's rooms.
It's not bare, but it's got just the right amount of accessories to make it feel comfortable and lived in, yet not cluttered.

Same room, different angle.
See how they used the iron gate? Genius! It's now an architectural detail AND an accessory.

Suzanne Kasler design
There's not any "chotskies" sitting around. The accessories are art work,  books, mirrors, pillows and flowers. Love it!
 Just some food for thought. Take a second look at your rooms. Do they need some editing? Think about it and make your home reflect the real you. Is there a lot of meaningless stuff sitting around collecting dust, or do the items you have out have meaning? There is no right answer to this except that it should reflect your view on my initial question:

Are you a Quality or a Quantity kind-of person?

1 comment:

  1. Beautiful rooms! I must say that the older I get the more I go for quality rather than quantity. When I was younger and had kids-I would have gone for quantity..cuz you never knew what was going to outlast the onslaught of kids! xo Diana


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