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Layered Living

by | Feb 15, 2017

Often the most appealing homes are the ones that are an extension of the owners personality. They are the houses full of collections that feel lived in comfortable and magazine shoot worthy without being forced or fake. The secret lies in styling with layers.

Layering can occur in a vignette or an entire room. It is the process of placing objects at different levels than others, including varied heights and planes. Layering draws the eye with depth bringing the foreground through to the background as well as down low and up high. Gain visual warmth, depth and interest through layers.

Start small with a vignette, maybe a reading nook, bar or a dresser to experiment with creating connections between your layered items. Colors, patterns, textures, functions, and style all allow collections to connect. Implement the rule of three’s to make your space more memorable. The human brain is attracted to the variation as well as odd numbers. Select three things, one each vertical, horizontal and thicker or of sculptural quality. A vertical piece might include art, a tall vase or lamp. Kidney pillows, stacks of books or another piece of art are excellent selections for a horizontal item. Bring it all together with a sculptured piece, vase of flowers or even a bowl of fruit. Build off of your most important piece with different heights for your other pieces. Don’t restrict layering to a standard surface, take it to the next from the floor to the lighting.

Take your layering to the next level through the use of colors and patterns. Creating depth keeps your eye moving around the room while making it feel cohesive and “lived in.” If you are drawn toward colors and patterns, start with a clean palette for ultimate versatility. Layering with color allows boundaries in style to be crossed with purpose. Mixing a mid-century piece into traditional home works when in the same color palette. Don’t leave that accent wall alone. Repeat the color throughout the room with pillows, throws, rugs, accessories or linens. When layering with patterns select colors that play well together while carefully editing your selections down to the essentials. Use small, medium, and large scales of patterns, but only one large per space. Vary directions and types of patterns, mixing a petite floral with a buffalo check for example.

Creating a calm surrounding with a tone-on-tone palette can be just as exciting as color with the help of some texture and style layering. Mix and match wood with leather, linens with metals and soft furs with stone. The different textures will continue to create the depth and interest you desire. Can’t stick to one style? Try layering your styles, for example, a vintage or rustic chair placed in a more contemporary home may feel out of place. Add in some additional pieces of the same style throughout the room. Small items like picture frames or a side table may be just enough to bring the mix of styles together.

Let your personality shine through in your home, layer in your heirlooms or travel finds. Work with your items, step back, take a picture and don’t be afraid to adjust and evolve.


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