Double impact styling tips for consoles, mantles, sills and shelves


Lets set the record straight shall we. I don’t just run into a room, sprinkle a bit of fairy dust magic over a console or mantle and suddenly it looks like the bees knees! Admittedly I’ve got some tricks up my sleeve and yes I may make it seem easy but ultimately  its about giving it a go and taking it from there. When you’re mixing periods and styles, objects, sculptures,  flowers, candles and who knows what else it’s all about rolling up your sleeves, getting stuck in  and seeing what works with what.

Here’s my checklist and this applies to everything, mantles, window sills, consoles big and small literally everything!

Mix up the proportions

If everything is the same size on your table it reads like a big yawn so mix it up. Imagine a ton of tiny tchotchkes on a shelf – jumbled clutter I say. To create those magical Alice in Wonderland interiors that I do all the time mix up perspective and proportion. P&P (we shall call them) they are some of the most under considered components in the decorating puzzle.   What I’m trying to do is disorientate you so you kind of feel like you’ve just fallen down the rabbit hole if that makes sense, you’re not quite sure what to focus on.  Plonk tall vases next to smaller ones; blocky, square looking ceramics next to curvaceous ones, remembering to totally to play around with the scale. Oh and remember (I say this a lot sorry) but no gaps or rows. Never ever ever, zig zag, cross over just no gaps!

Take the aerial view

I know this sounds odd but look at your styled arrangement from above. Stand on a chair it will give you a totally different birds eye perspective, and if it works from up high it will I promise you work from the ground.  Easy peasy little trick!

Three key basics

On all my tables, shelves and consoles all over the house  I have:

  1. Books
  2. Flowers
  3. Lamps

If you have nothing else, fear not these three things will change any surface around.

It’s all the mix

Mix as many materials as you can because as odd as this sounds we want to create tension. No tension no intrigue.,period!  Mix hard with soft, something feminine with something masculine. I’ve got the flocked parrot I designed for Debenhams on my console next to a big old concrete vase, a dainty tactile lamp next to a hard lump of concrete.

Fab u lous!


Candles enliven any surface even when not on. Some of my favs include;  Tatine (which we sell in the store) blend intoxicating scents of tomato leaf and green tea its burning away now actually and I also love  Diptyque, Astier de Villatte, & Neom.

Mesh practical with decorative

I’m not a practical designer (my printer after all is 4 floors up from my computer, can’t stand its ugliness)  but you  can (not me of course) totally blend functional with decorative. Let’s say keys, glasses, remotes all that kind of stuff won’t look terrible if you can distract the eye with something wonderous. A cool print or piece of sculpture something that takes away from the more mundane,

The image you are looking at belongs to Piero Gemelli. I constantly reference this amazing space because I think its genius pure genius just how beautifully it’s been designed and styled. Every surface full to the brim, yet it doesn’t feel cluttered – funny full circle back to this morning’s post!



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