How to Style Your Dresser So You Can Actually Still Use It

published May 12, 2019
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Credit: Joe Lingeman

Dresser styling can definitely pose a bit of challenge. It’s easy to plop a TV on top and call it a day, but that isn’t the most visually exciting option, not to mention, there’s generally not much space left when it comes to actually getting ready.

Dresser tops can hold a mix of practical and whimsical items, but the key is to not crowd the area too much. Jewelry boxes, candles, and plants can add personality to a space while keeping the overall purpose functional, as seen in the rooms below.

No room for a vanity? Make your dresser your getting-ready station. Stash makeup, jewelry, and hair accessories in stylish boxes (bye-bye, clutter!) and keep everyday pieces out on display. Installing a necklace holder overhead adds a pop of color to the area and keeps baubles from getting tangled. Hang or prop up a small mirror, and you’re all set!

There’s no need to go overboard when it comes to dresser top styling—you may need space to fold clothes and lay out accessories, after all. A favorite candle or two, a bottle of perfume, and some fresh flowers work wonders. Keeping photos of loved ones on display will make even the most mundane routines a little more cheerful.

In a smaller space, a dresser may have to do double duty as a nightstand. When square footage is at a premium, minimizing excess is key, so keep things simple. You don’t want your dresser top to become a dumping ground for everything from coffee mugs to junk mail, so commit to keeping the area somewhat sparse. We bet life will feel a little less chaotic!

In a kid’s room, pops of color go a long way. Displaying a fun print and a favorite toy or two keeps the atmosphere playful while helping your child remember what he has on hand the next time he’s feeling bored. Your little one can help choose different items to place there to keep the look—and playtime—feeling fresh.

Little trays or bowls are a must for corralling smaller items like watches, earrings, or hair clips. Plants add a charming touch but can easily be moved should you need space for a fan or table lamp.