You know when you open a magazine and they have the curated style shots, then a few pages later it gives you the details of where you can purchase each item. The rooms are magazine worthy, but some how a little bit too over styled, a little bit too perfect.
Now anyone who know's me well will testify my dislike for anything 'matchy' 'matchy'. From what I wear to my home. A look that could have easily been picked straight out of the nearest high street catalogue can be a bit contrived and not totally personal to you. Everything co-ordinated, with matching colours and finishes, is just a bit dull. By mixing things up with your furniture pieces, such as side tables, sofas and soft furnishings, and throwing in an heirloom or something a bit left field, like a random colour, something with a bit of humour or something a little bit battered. It creates interest, layers and gives your room soul.
I would also argue by furnishing your room a bit at a time and letting it evolve organically means you will naturally achieve a look that is less polished. Now that doesn't mean compromising on style. What i'm trying to achieve is a slightly less perfect finish. No matter what your budget, this rule applies to everyone!
You can achieve the less than perfect look in a number of ways. For instance using mismatched lamps, or side tables. An antique mirror (that doesn't even have to be antique) The Range or Dunelm have a really great budget selection from Art Deco to Baroque inspired. Mixing up the cushions on the sofa, even if they aren't vintage will add a less matching feel. A mash up of florals, geometrics, checks and plain are a great combination in varying scales. Adding a single odd chair, It maybe a vintage one, an old favourite, tattered leather, or a faded linen. Things with age and patina stop your room looking too done.
In our house I've put up an aged tin tile wallpaper in the kitchen, that has exactly the effect I mean. It looks a bit battered, in fact a friend thought, I was actually redecorating as the plaster was peeling!! But it does make everyone want to touch it when they see it! Everything else in this room is fairly polished. Porcelain floor tiles, gloss kitchen. It definitely needed something that was a bit rough looking!
The other end of the room is our dining area. It has a really old heavily distressed wooden table and an old Parker Knoll nursing chair that was given to me by my mother in law. She wanted me to have something comfortable to sit in for the unrelenting feeding that was about to ensue! (3 babies very premature, feeding at different times for an hour at a time means non stop feeding! But that's a story for another time!) It has been recovered but still has the fabric from when it was in the girls' nursery. Its a very cream light fabric that is now fraying and obviously cleaned in spots where the fabric has faded, probably from flung food and felt pens, but that's exactly why we love it. Its precious because it was given to me, but it's not too precious you can't throw yourself into it or worry about small fingers adding a chocolatey stain to it! Likewise, I don't expect you to take off your shoes or reach for a coaster for your mug. At chez moi its all about feeling comfortable, and if that means not removing your shoes that's ok with me!
Some of my favourite instagrammers certainly know how to mix up their interiors, and if you've read my blog before you'll have heard me mention these guys - I just can't get enough! If you don't follow already, I highly recommend you do!
If you fancy further reading on the beauty of imperfection try either of these books.