Inspiration Gallery: Organically Styled Collections

Judging by the mixed opinions about what constitutes clutter versus a collection, it's clear that pristine, perfectly placed arrangements are not everyone's cup of tea. For those of you who favor a more free-spirited, less contrived (looking) approach to the art of display, consider these inspirations our weekend treat to you... I have a special appreciation for the look of casual, loosely stylized displays, because when they're done right they make me appreciate the beauty of everyday imperfection...or, dare I say, authenticity. However, even the most organic of displays has some sort of method. Think about many of the pleasing vignettes strewn around an Anthropologie store. They're beautiful because there is almost always an element of the unexpected and haphazard about them, but they also have a certain cohesion to them.

To keep your displays from appearing too random, make sure there is at least one common element or theme uniting all the disparate pieces. The degree to which the theme is recognizable is up to you. In all of the examples here there is at least a subtle hint of commonality or theme: travel, vintage nostalgia, industrial, sculpture, or the object itself, i.e. frames. However, with all there is also a certain degree of haphazardness which comes from the variety of forms, textures, and— perhaps most importantly— the manner in which the items are displayed. The visual stimulation that a variety of display methods provides is key to this look. To achieve a more organic style in your displays, change it up: stack some items, hang other, prop a few, etc.

What are some of your favorite casual collections?

Related Post: How to Create a Visual Vignette

(Images: 1: Larie Frankel, 2: Living Etc., 3: Anthropologie, 4: Russell Smith for Real Simple, 5-8: James Merrell)

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