"Forcing" Eclectic Style

Top designers always preach that you can't force eclectic decor overnight... and I'm mostly inclined to agree.  A well curated home takes years to "finish" and even then, it's always evolving.  However, sometimes you need the odd piece to tie in a colour scheme or perhaps another oddball piece that you love but doesn't quite "work" on its own.

For our new/old house, I wanted a mix of things we loved but I've always veered away from anything too busy in the past.  This meant, I'd have to step outside my comfort zone to achieve the look I wanted.  I used the photo (below) of Emily Henderson's (one of my favourite bloggers/stylists) living room.  Gorgeous, right?  Such an interesting mix and yet, it's still cohesive.  Now, the challenge is to do something similar, only with my own twist.  For more pictures of Emily's home and to see some of her amazing (and often simple) design ideas, check our her blog: Style By Emily Henderson.

If you look at Emily's bookshelves, each shelf stands on its own as a little vignette.  There's also a mix of colour, height and texture, which makes the shelves look layered and not just thrown together.

While I like to check garage sales and flea markets to collect things over time, there are some great sources online for those who are looking for something to fill a space in a hurry.

Here are some of my favourites from Etsy:

Anthology House is one of my favourite shops.  They have many interesting and unusual pieces but they keep a large enough stock that there is probably something for everyone.  I loved this crane... (Cranes are a bit of an inside joke with Corey)

Elefant Design is another well curated shop and the owner seems really nice and will calculate shipping to Canada upon request.  She has some more expensive items but they are good quality.  How pretty are these Chinese statues?  I would love them on shelves because there are already two of them and, when placed on different shelves, they would link them.

Retro and Co has some very pretty items and I love that she photographs them in groupings with other items from her shop.  The pretty white ginger jar (below) was really tempting...

Amy's Vintage Decorium always has so many gorgeous vintage items that it's a pretty safe bet that at any given time, there's at least one item in her shop that I want!  If this brass impala bookend had a mate, I'd be in trouble!

Percolated Goods has many reasonably priced items and I found the owner to be easy to work with.  She ships from Ottawa and it made the transaction very reasonable!  I bought these vintage Blue Mountain pottery vases from her because they work so well with our living room colour scheme.

Queen Bee's Attic posts a real treasure every once in a while.  This hourglass caught my eye ages ago (it has sold) but they have some lovely Indian brass bowls at the moment.

Violette Slippers is my new "go to" source for vintage knobs and pulls.  These deco pulls are amazing and some of the most affordable I've found!

Hound Dog Digs is a new favourite Etsy shop (the owner is local) and I actually found the owner on Kijiji, where she was selling me some vintage shoe forms, books and an adorable little bell with an owl on the handle.  She's lovely, funny, has wicked style and is also a blogger.  Seriously, check her out!

We met to complete our transaction and hit it off so well that we actually spent an hour at Value Village buying vintage books, this brass potpourri jar (below) which looked much better after a little work with some Brasso and fine steel wool, and a crazy framed bust of a medieval woman with her mouth covered... which I display in defiance of the way women are still silenced all over the world.  (and also a little bit because it's just so deliciously weird!)

I styled some of the items we collected (and some I had lying around the house) just to see how they would look.  I'll move things around once I unpack some of my other things.

What do you think?  I'm starting to get excited to unpack some of my tchotchkes and treasures!
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