4 Elements Every Design Needs

As Christmas approaches decorating inspiration pops up everywhere – magazines, social media, design and decor websites and local shops. The ‘looks’ are swoon worthy and elegantly presented but many of us are not sure where to begin to create these gorgeous Christmas displays. The following tips apply whether you are decorating your fireplace mantel, creating a dining table centrepiece or styling your bookcase.


1.         Form

A visually attractive display incorporates items of various heights and shapes – think in terms of short,  medium and tall. Once you have assembled the items for your display, place the larger items first as they are the anchors in the display. Next add in the medium items followed by the small ones. Once you have these key pieces placed fill gaps with coordinating and complementary items.


2.         Balance

When creating vignettes remember the ‘rule of odds’, that is, an odd number of items. As counter intuitive as this may sound, an odd number of items brings balance to the display. When considering how many small to large items, think 3 to 5 medium and large items and 3 small. And when completing the display by tucking in additional pieces, remember to stick with odd numbers not only of the ‘fill’ items but the overall number of items in the display as well.



3.         Negative Space

Negative or blank space in a display is important as it allows for movement and serves to highlight a particular item or items. Often we crowd our vignettes end up drowning the display making it difficult to see and appreciate the items we have included and making it visually chaotic. Remember that ‘less is more’ when creating a display; a few carefully arranged items is far more appealing and serene.


4.         Texture

Texture is critical in decor, especially when creating a display. Without visual and tactile texture, displays look flat and one dimensional, in other words boring and uninviting! Layer textures into your display by including items that have surface texture as well as items that have visual texture. Including texture will give your display movement, interest and vitality.