Photography by Tessa Neustadt
A lot has changed in the past few years. I started my own design practice. You and Brian made a human baby with your bodies. I become the West Coast Creative Director of Homepolish. You started ruling the world and representing Target. It’s been a crazy few years, but super fun. And one of my favorite things about our new careers is that we still get the chance to collaborate every once in a while. So when the chance to play in your dining room arose, I was stoked. The space is amazing, bright, high-ceiling’d. But it needed some life. It needed art.
Enter the Tappan Collective. Tappan and Homepolish have oodles in common; they make collecting cool art from emerging artists a breeze and Homepolish makes interior design affordable and accessible to all, armed with our dear nation’s best and brightest designers. I want like everything on Tappan‘s site, so needless to say I jumped at the chance to help style the new dining room around this awesome piece by Molly Berman Emily chose for her space. And lucky you, if you pop over to Homepolish right now you can enter to win a version of this exact piece for your own pad!
There are a few things to keep in mind when styling around artwork. And I’d like to tell you about them now. In list form. Because I am incapable of talking like a normal person. I can only list things.
1. If you have lots of bitsy things, put them on a tray. This makes the whole scene feel less busy and more in control. For example, if the alcohol and glassware above were just sitting there on the credenza, they would look totally junky and disorganized. Like me on a Saturday morning after a hard night out (just kidding I literally sit inside eating pizza on Friday nights these days, alone, in Garfield pajamas). If you have too many small objects on a surface and they’re not corralled somehow they’ll look crazy. And then you’ll feel crazy. And then you’ll actually become crazy. And all your friends will hate you. Let this be a lesson to all of us to invest in trays so that our collections of objects (or booze) will look neat and organized.
2. If you are having a styling party, make sure your styling partner is pretty and laughs at all your jokes. That’s why I love working with Emily so much.
3. Make sure there’s enough light. Emily will be adding a ceiling pendant to this room, but having some nice lighting at eye level is never a bad idea. I love these cute lamps Emily snagged from Target.
4. Cluster things in groups of 3. Or 5 if you really must. This helps them look natural and collected. Just like Julia Roberts when she’s wearing that red dress in “Pretty Woman” and she looks totally like a classy lady even though like a week before she was wearing crazy boots and a cheap blond wig. Another thing to remember when clustering is to make sure the heights are distinct from one another. Above, we used a tall vase, a medium vase, and low planter to make a happy family.
5. Make sure you choose items that accentuate the mood of your artwork. This Molly Berman piece from Tappan Collective has such a quiet, peaceful mood. Thus, we chose accessories that complimented the color palette and feel of the beautiful photograph.
With these tips, you will get rich, find the man of your dreams, and get rock hard abs by the time you finish reading this sentence. And you’ll have me to thank for it. You’re welcome.
OMGPS: You can totally WIN the awesome Molly Berman piece from Tappan Collective that Emily has hanging in her dining room. Well, a smaller, more managable version of it at least. CLICK ON THIS LINK to enter. Right now. Or Else!
Resources: Dresser and dining table are vintage from the flea market, lamps from Target, tray from Target (vintage = 2 years ago), vase on dining table from Target (discontinued) and dining chairs from Mid-Century LA (and vintage, but they have more). Vessels are vintage. Morse code rocks glasses from ShopClass in LA.