Wednesday, February 5, 2014

The Collected Home....

One of my favourite designers is Charlotte Moss....her interiors are collected, not decorated...infused with character and charm and that haphazard look of uncontrived elegance...

....layers of the stuff of life....meaningful momentos acquired over time...


...interiors that shun clutter in favour of symmetry and balance, but still offer comfort and personality...

With my decorating challenges here at Acorn Lane, I strive to employ some of these design principles in my own home...

What seems to work for decorating in below in our kitchen/sitting area...

I begin with fabrics and colours I love to live with...the colour green taking top billing...the blue export china I have collected for years...consistent throughout with Cake Batter paint on the walls and Cloud White trim by BM...

Layering with collections and different textures like silver, glass, baskets and of course, flowers from the garden, helps me to achieve the look I want, without the clutter...
One of the design principles I learned in and has been working for me! Below..looking from the kitchen into the sitting area...
In the master bedroom below...the colours of alabaster and blush are working well with the painted French provincial furniture acquired at an estate sale over twenty years ago...there is a wonderful story associated with it's purchase...for another time...

Many more layers required here!! I am thinking Mole (a mousy brown) velvet pillows and linen bedding....a small slipper chair..bedside lamps...personal touches....

The downstairs guest bedroom is acquiring the collected looking in from the ensuite bath..

...because this room gets limited light, I decided for a happy, yellow colour scheme...I think I have about six different patterns going on here...but I like it...they are colours of the garden! Petit print quilts have found their way into my heart..

....a romantic at heart... I added this small plaster relief over the iron bed....which was in an upstairs bedroom for several years...

The small chest, below, belonged to my Mom...handpainted through Acorn Lane...
Layering with vintage pillow slips, lamps and hand painted furniture and china...the lamp shade is made from vintage fabric...I sold them in my shop at one time...I love the English term for anything handmade...bespoke!

It just sounds so lovely and proper...

A vintage bark cloth toss cushion, with bottle brush fringe....bottle brush sewing obsession at the moment! It looks soft and pretty on cushions and works just as well with upholstery...

Decorating in layers, for me, helps me to visualize more clearly in achieving the look I want, and ultimately avoid costly mistakes...especially when you are on a budget! I can wait...for just the right thing!!

Finding your own personal style can be a harrowing, daunting experience....but like anything else, I have found, that decorating from the heart makes it a little less difficult, and ultimately more pleasurable..employing basic design principles and layering with objects of affection, loved and collected over the years, creates an inviting and interesting home reflecting the people who live there......

This is a view from my window today...grey skies, chilly and snowing....I hope this small post helped brighten up your day!!




  1. Spot on, Nella! I agree with everything. As an antiques dealer, I love to collect, display and share. It's what makes a home personal. And yours is beautiful!! Love that view, too! xo

  2. Nella, I second your thoughts as well as those of Loi. A home should feel and be collected over years and be filled with favorite and sentimental items. It is what makes your house feel like your home, your cocoon and your castle.

  3. Well this beautiful post certainly brightened my day... amidst the blowing, endless snow.
    I hope you're staying warm and cozy surrounded by such delight.
    Please tell me those roses are from an earlier part of the year, their shade of pink is gorgeous...
    Susan x

  4. Searching for the special elements to create layers for a home is so much fun.
    I really like the white and yellow bedroom. My very first adventure in decorating was a yellow bedroom with pretty white furniture and rose pattern trimmings. The look is timeless and serene, and you make me want to create that again.
    oh so lovely.......

  5. I agree totally Nella. If we decorate with found things and items that speak to our hearts the rooms will always speak to us and make us content living in them. Your home speaks volumes! So beautiful!

  6. I've looked at all the photos twice already...So very elegant and pretty without being stuffy and oh so incredibly inviting..sigh..... even in winter I envy your yard..<3
    going back for third look

  7. Nella, your home is beautiful and I completely agree with you… Uncontrived is beautiful … The view from your window is amazing. Have a wonderful week.
    XO Mary

  8. Good morning Nella! How lovely to see another post from you! Home decorating or rather, collecting is a life-long process I think. Styles change, moods change, and even if our styles remain (French vs. modern), we always want to arrange things according to season. I love the idea of COLLECTING rather than decorating; decorating has a feel of keeping things stagnant, never moved around, collecting dust. But collecting seems more person, active.

    How I love your furniture! I look forward to your garden features as well. Have a super day! Anita

  9. Love Charlotte Moss…and love a room that looks evolved and "collected" over the years…your guest room is so cheerful and inviting…looking forward to seeing your bedroom evolve..and must say I love seeing views of your kitchen!

  10. This is an art form... one I am constantly working to understand more about. I love layered vignettes along with more simple, open areas. Somewhere between clutter and minimalism is the answer that I'm looking for!
    Your home is beautiful, Nella. I've too have scrolled through this post several times! Gorgeous.

  11. Pretty post. Love that Chaise Lounge and the green and white fabric.
    I think you inspired me to change some items around this house.. yvonne

  12. Hi Nella,
    I agree. Charlotte Moss makes everything look so elegant and livable at the same time.

    I love how light & airy your house looks & how you're focusing on collecting what you love. Getting a peak inside is always a treat for me!

    Stay warm!

  13. beautiful home Nella ~ filled with found treasures ♥

  14. Hello Nella, your home is looking just beautiful, you must be so happy with it. I do so agree with you about the layered look and I think it develops over time. Wishing you a Happy Valentine's Day and a lovely weekend. With love, Linda x


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