The Eclectic Essentials – How to Create a Cohesive Aesthetic Without Compromising on Character

Designers describe the eclectic style as a rule breaker, mixing the old and the new, and shunning rigid design rules. Nailing an eclectic, unique design style within the home is so easy to love, yet so hard to achieve.

Many mistake the eclectic style as an anything-can-go way of decorating, but the true eclectic style is, in fact, a purposeful and well thought-out way of decorating. Achieving the ‘thrown together’ look, requires considerable patience, planning and consultation with fabric suppliers, art dealers and flea market vendors.

If you can’t decide whether your favorite decor is rustic, retro or mid-century modern, don’t stress. Follow these tips to create a cohesive aesthetic, without compromising on character.

Plan your Layout

Carefully planning your space is the most important way of achieving a cohesive aesthetic. Before your start purchasing any decor for your rooms, decide and plan where each main item of furniture will go.

Getting these boring logistics out of the way, places you in a better position to play around with colors, textures, and patterns, that will bring the existing furniture and the desired look together.

When preparing a layout, it can also be beneficial to create or accentuate an existing focal point. This point can be the centre of the design. Therefore, while you add character to the room with an eclectic set of different styles and period items, the focal point will provide focus and cohesion to the room as a whole.

Be Consistent

It is possible to achieve a cohesive aesthetic while experimenting with design styles. If you decide to add an eclectic mix to your home, you must ensure that it is reflected throughout the house as a whole.

Adding character or certain elements to only one room, will make a space feel disjointed. The key takeaway here? Think of your home as one continuous space, not singular rooms joined together.

Finding a common thread throughout the home can be a great equalizer, allowing you to play with different design styles and era without compromising on cohesion. Often colour can be a great choice of equaliser. If your existing decor has similar tones, play up the shades with art and other pieces that will help unify the space.

Find Balance

Bringing in pieces from different era’s and styles, requires finding a balance in the scale and symmetry. Even if the pieces are different styles, textures, or from different periods, similar lines and tones will create a design harmony to even the most disjointed mix of items.

While it can feel exciting to throw out the rule book, if you still want to achieve a cohesive aesthetic, you must put a cap on the number of contrasting styles in a single room. Styling an eclectic and unique room does not mean throwing every item randomly together. In fact, it requires more curation than any other design choice.

Layer Up

Layering artwork, objects and rugs is a great way to combine different design styles and era’s. If you have a creative flair, carefully combining these items can elevate the original pieces to a whole new level. These layered pieces will also show the balance between pieces of different era’s, and provide a holistic feel to your design choices.

Style with Love

The only way to bring multiple and unique design choices to one home or room, is to style with love and intention. Every piece should be curated in a thoughtful and considered way, with the intention to create a balanced and personal space. The eclectic style is all about bringing in pieces that you love. So ditch the random junk, and lovingly style the pieces that are close to your heart.

The eclectic style rests on bringing a considered mismatch into any room, and developing a cohesive aesthetic without sacrificing character. With careful planning, restraint and consistency, you can bring retro-modern-rustic chic into your dream home.

Ana Vucic
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Ana Vucic is a creative writer at MyCity-Web with a degree in English language and literature. When she is not reading the latest A Song of Ice and Fire book, she is actively looking for an inspiration for writing in her favourite music. She loves travelling and exploring new cultures, and wants to visit the Hobbiton movie set in New Zealand, where she hopes to meet Peter Jackson.

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