These 9 Museum-Inspired Items Will Bring Artsy Vibes to Any Space (For as Little as $6!)

published Oct 8, 2020
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Credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion

Whether you prefer to spend your weekends wandering museums or are just looking for a way to be a bit more artsy in your home, these unique decor picks are for you. Sure, they’re probably not destined to become the workhorses of your space (that accolade is reserved for more practical picks like furniture and organizing solutions), but these museum-inspired items are a great way to add a layer of visual interest and dimension to any room you put them in.

Grecian Bust Pot

This piece is what I would imagine would happen if The Met well, met, a botanical garden. One part a nod to ancient Greek sculptures, one part an excuse to show off that thriving plant baby you’re so proud of, this cheeky vessel is the ideal way to bring a touch of history and a burst of greenery into your home.

Buy: Grecian Bust Pot, Starting at $20.00 from Anthropologie

Credit: All Modern

Pantin Lighted Curio Cabinet

If you’re a collector at heart, then trust me when I tell you a curiosity cabinet like this wooden and metal model is 100 percent what your home is missing.

Beginning in the Italian Renaissance, curio cabinets were used by museums and the nobility to display weird, quirky, and macabre objects. Now? Well, they’re a great place to house your cookbook stash, show off your love of vintage pottery, or even display your collection of feathered hats. Hey, you do you!

Buy: Pantin Lighted Curio Cabinet, $600.00 $500.00 from All Modern

Credit: West Elm

Light Rods Art Sconce

Are you ready for the easiest upgrade out there? Enter: an art sconce. Typically reserved for—you guessed it—museums, this illumination method, which bathes a piece in soft downcast light, is a genius way to make even the most inexpensive artwork stand out.

If you find a plug-in model like this sconce, which requires exactly zero wiring knowledge, then the installation process will be super simple. Just get ready to be constantly asked, “Is that an original?” on all of your Zoom calls. (Yes, from Minted, thank you very much).

Buy: Light Rods Art Sconce, $179.00 $143.20 from West Elm

Credit: Etsy

Taxidermy Insect Frame

This next pick may not be for everyone, but if you love a little quirk in your life (or are just #bigfan of Mother Nature), then a framed taxidermy bug may actually be on your wishlist. Spend time in any natural history museum and you’re bound to spot more than a few preserved insects (think: rare beetles, colorful butterflies, or in this case, a phyllium giganteum) framed throughout. They’re a conversation starter, that’s for sure.

Buy: Taxidermy Insect Frame, $56.75 from Etsy

Credit: World Market

Mini Wood and Brass Magnifying Glass

If you’re anything like me, then you’re always on the hunt for small knick-knacks to help you style out your space. This magnifying glass is not only super budget-friendly, but it also brings to mind my favorite childhood museum adventure book “From The Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler.”(Anyone? Just me?). It would look great added to a shelf, styled on a stack of coffee table books, or as a playful object just sitting on your desk.

Buy: Mini Wood and Brass Magnifying Glass, $5.99 from World Market

Credit: CB2

Acacia Wall Ledge

Art fans will love this stylish solution for curating and showcasing all of your favorite pieces—without spending hours composing the perfect gallery wall. Wall ledges are also a genius pick for apartment dwellers, as they allow you to display multiple pieces without putting many holes to your wall. Deck yours out with a mix of framed and unframed artwork, plus a few decorative accents for added interest, like a small potted succulent or your favorite record.

Buy: Acacia Wall Ledge 48″, $69.95 from CB2

Credit: Amara

Andy Warhol “Flowers” Tray

Add a pop of personality (see what I did there?) to the smallest corner of your home with this decorative tray inspired by the king of Pop Art himself, Andy Warhol. Featuring a reproduction of his 1964-65 print “Flowers,” this cute porcelain catch-all from Ligne Blanche would be great styled on an entryway table as a way to corral your keys or bedside for odds and ends like jewelry. It’s a bit splurge-y, sure, but not when you consider how much a real Warhol costs.

Buy: Andy Warhol “Flowers” Tray, $152.00 from Amara

Credit: West Elm

Neon Mondri Vase

For truly statement-making stems, snatch up this modern art-inspired vase from MoMA. The neon acrylic vessel is half-sculpture, half-vase, and it’s designed as a nod to the work of artist Piet Mondrian, one of the founding fathers of the graphic De Stijl art movement. Honestly, it would look amazing empty, but it’s even cooler filled with a few quirky, colorful blooms. Flip it around to find the configuration you like best for your dining table; the fact that it can be used three different ways makes its price tag feel a little more justified.

Buy: Neon Mondri Vase, $100.00 $80.00 from West Elm

Credit: Etsy

Abstract Faces Wall Mural

Want a more abstract take on museum-inspired decor? Look no further than this eye-catching wallpaper. The peel-and-stick style boasts a gallery of line-drawn faces and figurines, all on a neutral cream background to keep it from being too in your face. Strike the right balance by using this wow-worthy wallpaper in a smaller space like a pantry or mudroom.  

Buy: Abstract Faces Wall Mural, Starting at $75.00 $67.50 for a 55-inch by 33-inch mural from Etsy