How to Mix Decorating Styles
Do the current decorating trends have your head spinning? Fear no more! Here’s how to incorporate new pieces and mix decorating styles in your home with things you already own!. I also show you how green and gold are great for fall decor and how you, too, can decorate for fall without using any orange!
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Last month, our long-awaited Aubrey entertainment center arrived, and I could not wait to get my hands on it and decorate it just in time for fall. There was only one little problem: my decorative pieces such as picture frames, books, trays, vases, bowls, and candlesticks were a hot mess.
With time, my decorating taste has changed. I started purchasing pieces that didn’t necessarily ‘match’ my home and my current decor. So here’s the story of the green Rae Dunn pumpkin. The pumpkin that forced me to decorate this fall without using orange and helped me combine decor styles with ease.
- Mixing Decorating Styles Without Compromise
- Mixing Farmhouse Decor with Traditional Pieces
- Fall Decorating Without Orange
- Merge Decorating Styles Using Color
- How to Mix Pieces and Combine Different Decorating Styles
- 1. Start with a piece you love
- 2. Use a few colors or hues
- 3. Play with height
- 4. Prop small objects
- 5. Balance the Styles
- 6. Take a Step Back
Mixing Decorating Styles Without Compromise
For years, I thought I would have to discard every single piece I own to get a cohesive and stylish look at home. For example, I felt awful thinking that I’d have to discard this traditional green and gold vase, one of the very first pieces my husband and I picked together for our new home 14 years ago!
But if there’s something I have learned (with age and through blogs), as long as the item tells a story, and you absolutely LOVE IT, you can make it work. My friend Tasha at Kaleidoscope Living has a lot to say about that.
So, I grabbed the green pumpkin and the green vase, and I realized that they were totally different styles. I mean, how can you possibly mix traditional decorating style with the trendy farmhouse look of Rae Dunn pottery? Well, my friend, you can, and the result is gorgeous if you ask me 🙂
Mixing Farmhouse Decor with Traditional Pieces
Between Joanna Gaines, Rae Dunn, and all the beautiful feeds on Instagram, I could not help but cave into the farmhouse decor. And I started purchasing faux green eucalyptus planters, Rae Dunn pottery, and even a $5 tobacco basket from Target’s bullseye spot.
And then, I would bring the pieces home and feel like NOTHING looked good. I had this preconception that if the items did not belong to the same collection or designer, I wasn’t gonna be able to pull a designer’s look at home. But, boy, was I wrong!
Last year, we were able to pull together a beautiful transitional master bedroom, mixing very different styles. There’s traditional furniture, a modern bed, a farmhouse fan, coastal shutters, and even a very shabby chic handcrafted white fireplace. And it all came together in a gorgeous retreat.
Fall Decorating Without Orange
So you may be wondering what the no-orange fall decor has to do with mixing decorating styles. I promise I am getting there!
When I want to decorate, I always pick a piece that ‘speaks to me,’ and I start planning everything else around it. In this case, I wanted *badly* for this green pumpkin to work with my home decor, and of course, I wanted to display it in the Aubrey entertainment center.
When our entertainment center arrived, I had analysis-paralysis. I literally had this huge white canvas in front of me, a green Rae Dunn pumpkin, and a bunch of random decorative pieces from different walks of life. My head was spinning.
Like this gold and white striped pumpkin, I purchased at Target 4 years ago. So pretty but so lonely. I wasn’t sure how to pair it and make it stand out.
Or these -12 years old- traditional gold bookends. I keep pulling them in and out of my ‘seasonal decor closet.’ They don’t necessarily match a white hutch with beadboard, but it all worked out when I mixed the styles.
I originally placed a few random books in between the bookends. However, there was no cohesiveness. When I brought in all the blue books to match a ginger jar, it all came together.
And then, it all started to make sense: I decided to tie it all together using color.
Merge Decorating Styles Using Color
I decided to stick to the green (from the pumpkin and the glass vase) and the gold that kept making its appearance in my pieces to combine my different decor styles.
Farmhouse decor isn’t particularly known for gold tones but more for wood tones and rustic pieces. I just happened to have this acacia wood tray with gold handles I found at Walmart back in January of 2020.
I also filled this hurricane candle holder with faux moss balls and succulents to tie it in with the green hues spread out on the entertainment center.
Another piece I couldn’t part with is this white and blue ginger jar. I thought I was going to ruin it all by bringing such a classic piece into play. However, it gracefully stands out in a small cubby, paired with a stack of DIY antique books.
The wood & white mini-frame is from Michaels. The print is a print of digital clip art I use in my Etsy products.
To continue with the blue hues, I added the blue & white chinoiserie mini frame. This is not a coincidence. After ordering the entertainment center, I intentionally purchased the blue & white mini frame, thinking it would pair nicely with the ginger jar. And it does!
The miniature vase is also from Michaels. And I have had it for years!
How to Mix Pieces and Combine Different Decorating Styles
Here’s my thought process when I decided to give a shot at mixing and matching decorating styles.
1. Start with a piece you love
Start with a piece you love. Something you can’t live without and you are not willing to sacrifice in the decorating process. In my case, I wanted to display the green and white pumpkins.
When your starting point is your favorite piece, you choose and display other pieces based on it. By doing this, there is cohesiveness between the piece you love and your subsequent choices, and there is no chance it’s going to be left out.
2. Use a few colors or hues
Find decorative pieces within the same colors and/or hues. I used wood tones, gold, and green. I also added touches of blue. It sounds like a lot, but it works!
3. Play with height
Balance the shelves, as well as on each side of the hutch. Here, the antique taper candlesticks add height to balance out the small picture frame and short eucalyptus plant.
4. Prop small objects
Stacking books is the perfect way to prop and raise objects. This iron geometric sculpture stands out over two books.
5. Balance the Styles
Do not let one style overpower the other. Always try to find a balance between the decorating styles you are mixing. I mixed farmhouse, modern, and traditional pieces all throughout the entertainment center.
Like this traditional Mikasa crystal bowl filled with driftwood and faux greenery. The bowl sits on top of the acacia wood tray.
The boho style of this letter ‘A’ (similar here), blends with the traditional and farmhouse styles thanks to the light blue hue.
This traditional bell makes a big statement in the entertainment center. The green and wood tones tie perfectly with the rest of the objects, and it adds interest to the big opening where the TV is.
6. Take a Step Back
Finally, step back and look for pieces that stick out. It could be its color, shape, or size. If something doesn’t ‘feel’ right, remove it, replace it, stand back and look again! I did this several times.
Once I had the entire entertainment center decorated, I moved on to decorate the coffee table. I like to keep my coffee table as clean (as in very few decorations) as possible. The tin farmhouse oval tray gathers a white vase with gold polka dots, a green ‘Hello Fall’ pumpkin sign, and a blue candle.
Again, I kept the hues in gold, green, and blue tones. The green little sign ties it all together and brings the fall vibe to life without using any orange.
Another easy way to combine decor styles is by adding small touches to the couches with pillows and throws. I purchased grass green buffalo plaid pillowcases, to extend the hues past the wall unit and add a farmhouse vibe to the modern gray leather couches.
More Fall Decor Ideas Without Using Orange
Our entryway is mostly farmhouse style. Especially because I have a display of Rae Dunn pieces displayed in a barn door cabinet. The sliding barn door cabinet and distressed lamp are from Kirkland’s.
I decided to keep the green wreath on the wall. Instead of swapping it for a fall wreath, I added the small ‘Bless this Home’ sign, a classic fall sentiment.
I was also able to add a touch of fall decor without using orange by putting a small faux eucalyptus plant inside the pumpkin-shaped jute basket. Other years, I have filled it with faux orange pumpkins and gourds.
The black and white ‘Happy Pumpkin Spice Season’ sign is perfect for decorating for fall without using orange. I used a command hook to hang it on the inside of our front door. A classic ‘cinnamon whisk’ hangs from the door handle.
Lastly, this Thanksgiving chalkboard art stands out next to the white cotton stems and a white faux pumpkin. Another great way to decorate for fall without using orange.
I hope you gathered enough inspiration to decorate this fall without using any orange! Also, do not be afraid of mixing decorating styles. Combining styles is fun! Just look for balance in the number of pieces you use and stick to a cohesive color palette.