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Bite-Size Design refers to real design on a small scale. This series will teach you through uncomplicated posts how to create a classic, real, and timeless space. In this series, I will take inspiration from a source ( and cite it of course) and apply it to my classic, real, and timeless style. I will use items I already own and/or spend $20 or less to achieve it. The money that I do spend will either be spent at the grocery store (fruits, vegetables, flowers), thrift shop, garage sales, or the nursery.
Why am I being specific and setting guidelines on the items I am choosing to use for this series? It is a one word answer, authenticity. Your space will feel more real and alive if it is authentic. My hope is that this will guide you to choose items that are in tune with who you are as a person.
Think about how the food industry has changed. It has become more authentic by using seasonal and locally grown products. We want to know the story behind our food and where it comes from. The same should be true for our homes and the products we choose to put in them.
Okay, let me show you what I mean.
This article from the October 2015 Better Homes and Gardens issue was my source of inspiration. It discussed the combination of metallics and natural elements.
This was my version of mixing metallics and nature on my fireplace mantel. I chose a few finishes to work with for this project. The brass/gold metallics, clear glass, and the colors brown and orange. My general rule of thumb is that as long as something is repeated in the setting, it will work. For example, the brown is repeated in the platter, nest, mirror, and candles. Do you see how it works?
To create a real authentic look, you need to use what you have. The turkey platter was a gift we received our first year of marriage 15 years ago. The vintage baby bottle was a garage sale find. The copper bowl is from my parents house that I “borrowed”. The metallic vessel that holds the nest was a thrift store find and the glass vase that holds the flowers was gifted from my husband’s grandmother when she moved. These items are me and my family. I find comfort in that fact.
Here is my “something to try” tip. Add another platter to the mix. I bought this one for $1 at a garage sale a few weeks ago. I like how it elongates the look against the wood of the mirror.
Take something from this post and use it as a jumping point for your own project. Remember, it is the story behind the items that make it interesting. Honor your home as well as the memories and values of the items you choose to be in it.