6 Tips for Styling Vignettes

When it comes to seasonal decor, which part of your home do you most enjoy styling? For me, it's the mantel.
Follow along as I create some vignettes for spring and summer.
© Rhiann Wynn-Nolet
Above you can see where we were at the end of winter. Snow scene painting mixed with greenery (the promise of spring).
Now, let's talk Tips!
Tip 1: Three is the Magic Number when creating a new vignette. Vignettes work best using an odd number of elements. In other words, five is okay, four, not so much.
Tip 2-5: Mix heights, round shapes and angled shapes, organic with man-made, and if possible, throw in something that is a bit of a surprise!
© Rhiann Wynn-Nolet
Tip 6: Old books are perfect for adding height, play around to decide exactly what looks best. You can have the leather or cloth spines showing, or the page side, or wrap the books in white or craft paper, all depending on what look you want.
In the vignette above, on our dining room sideboard, the three primary vignette elements are the wire cage, the plant, and the shell. Broken down further, the two brass quail and the tiny plant form a mini-vignette with the books (showing their leather spines) acting as a base. On a macro level, the windmill head, the mirror and the cage/shell/plant grouping also create a Power Of Three composition. By the way, that mirror? A $7 score at Willie's (aka Goodwill)!
© Rhiann Wynn-Nolet©
Above you see a vignette that straddles the counter between our kitchen and dining. It's got the "unexpected" in the form of a vintage toy tractor (Ron collects those). The organic element is covered by the flowers and cotton. Don't you just love cotton?
But now back to the mantel. In April, the mood switched to romantic. The left side featured a shadow box I made from an old clock, if you're interested in learning more about that, see all my posts on HomeTalk. Technically there are four elements in this grouping, but the books and clock read as one. Note that the page sides are showing, to create a softer, lighter look.
© Rhiann Wynn-Nolet
We have a nice collection of antique rose plates. You can see them all on our blog. There's one behind the pink hobnail glass piece on the left and I used them on the right side of the mantel too (see below). That ornate gold frame is completely empty by the way, and we like it that way. It's such a gorgeous piece in and of itself, it really doesn't need any art inside!
© Rhiann Wynn-Nolet
Then I found a little brass bowl, and wanted to see how that looked with some shells and rocks. Note the organic (shells and greenery).
© Rhiann Wynn-Nolet
When Mother's Day rolled around I just had to add the lovely milk glass covered box I received! That milk glass bud vase is holding one of our first New Dawn roses of the year
© Rhiann Wynn-Nolet
I decided to turn "pretty" up to full volume on the left too!
© Rhiann Wynn-Nolet
Now that it's past Memorial Day, I thought a summer-by-the-water vibe was in order. No, unfortunately we no longer live near the ocean, but it's still nice to remember those days.
Here the three elements are the painting, the shell box, and the creamer with feathers. Aren't those feathers amazing? We found them on a walk with our dogs. They probably belonged to a turkey vulture. Those are both the "organic" element and the unexpected one. They add a little wildness to the composition that keeps it from looking dull.
© Rhiann Wynn-Nolet
Here's the right side. Note that there's a bird here too.
Have you noticed how brass is back in a BIG way? From knicknacks to lighting, brass is hot! Here we have five elements-the shell box, the brass crane, the books, the conch shell, and the mother of pearl necklace. There's that unexpected element again. Jewelry isn't normally part of mantel decor, but here it works because it's made of mother of pearl sourced from the ocean, and the color is harmonious.
© Rhiann Wynn-Nolet
Finally, here's the whole shebang...for now, anyway!
© Rhiann Wynn-Nolet
Daisy and Buster have been enjoying the backyard. Literally. They both love eating grass. We don't love all the gacking that follows...
Daisy © Rhiann Wynn-Nolet
For more pictures, come visit our blog! We'll pour you some sweet tea, and we can sit on the front porch and chat about decor, or gardening, or dogs!
© Rhiann Wynn-Nolet
Quince Cottage Style is "agrarian chic" - a mix of old and new, rustic and opulent.
Our goal is to make our new subdivision house look inviting, beautiful,
and as though it wasn't born yesterday!

Want more details about this and other DIY projects? Check out my blog post!

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