Simple to sensational: using accessories to pull together a scheme
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In the world of fashion, hair accessories are having ‘a moment’ – whether it's the humble hairband, a gorgeous grip or a bejewelled slide – they are a simple way to change things up and finish off an outfit. In fashion, accessorising – be it with hairclips, bags, jewellery or shoes - has long been known to have the power to transform a look.
In the world of interiors, accessories are no less important. Cushions, rugs, ceramics, lighting and art have the power to transform a space - adding depth, interest, texture and personality.
Much of my home has a neutral backdrop – there’s no wallpaper (opens in new tab), no carpets (only floorboards), our sofa (opens in new tab) (whilst lime green) is a plain velvet, so you can see that an injection of interest is needed in our space.
Here’s where accessorises come into play:
1 colouring in
Vintage Boucherouite cushions add colour, pattern and texture, pretty bow ceramics allude to my lifelong love of this particular motif, vintage artworks (I particularly love portraits) dotted throughout rooms make the eye travel and provide a talking point.
Rugs (or artwork for your floors, as I often refer to them) pull the room together - uniting colours and bringing texture and warmth.
Scalloped rattan (opens in new tab) light shades add whimsy and character, and Tamegroute candlesticks – with their deep, rich green glaze and uneven surface, inject a sense of exotic, hinting at the Moroccan village from which they originate.
2 Layer layer
I am happy to admit that, most days, I spend more time accessorising my bed than I do myself. I just love the daily ritual of layering it up with textiles; linen bedding, Moroccan blankets, eiderdowns, and extra-long cushions all feature. I want it to be as cosy and inviting as possible.
Coco Chanel once said “before leaving the house a lady should look in the mirror and remove one accessory’. Me, I look at my bed and add another.
3 the story of you and yours
Whilst we are told to never judge a book by its cover, an outfit, and particularly the accessories that accompany it, can often give us a sense of the person wearing them.
In much the same way, I always love homes that reflect the people that live there; their personalities, style, character and life-lived all evident as you move through their space.
Home accessories are key to this; candles in your favourite scent, art (or framed prints) from a beloved artist, collections of things picked up on your travels (shells, pottery, baskets), a beloved quilt or eiderdown from your childhood, a wall mounted splatterware plate that reminds you of that trip to Italy, well-thumbed books and magazines.
Suddenly you start to see that it’s the accessories in your home, that provide the magic, the flourish, the finishing touches.
4 group dynamics
And while for some it’s a collection of vintage Chanel handbags that gets the accessory part of their heart racing, for me it’s a collection of Astier de Villette ceramics. On every special occasion I (not so secretly) hope for a new piece to add, and as the years pass the collection is gradually growing.
There’s something so lovely about home accessories grouped together, a unifying colour, designer, period or pattern linking them. It feels personal, something you have taken the time to acquire and curate.
Each piece in my collection has sentimental value (a bowl gifted by my best friends for my 40th, a vase from our wedding day). So, whilst my daughter may not inherit a chic French handbag collection when I eventually leave this planet, she will sure as hell have an enviable collection of delicate French plates, vases and candlesticks that meant something to her mother.
But the joy of accessorising, as the £5 pearl hair clip attests, is that you don’t have to spend a fortune. In fact, quite the opposite – you can get an accessory ‘fix’ for next to nothing.
Whilst you deliberated over your kitchen tiles (opens in new tab), your expensive sofa (opens in new tab) and felt that choosing a mattress was akin to selecting a life partner (well, I mean, you will be sleeping with it every night…), accessorising your home should come with none of the pressure and all of the fun.
Shop for accessories at Edit58 (opens in new tab).
Want more inspiration? Check out the latest insta-worthy interiors. (opens in new tab)
Shining a spotlight on the now and the next in home design and decor, Livingetc is the UK's best selling high end and contemporary home design magazine. As a brand, Livingetc showcases the world's very best homes, breaks and makes the trends, and has access to leading international designers for insight and ideas. It was first published in 1998, and is currently edited by Pip Rich.
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