Easy To Create Focal Points- Three…Two…Done!


Learning to decorate with personal style can be intimidating. It causes us to chuckle seeing some of my attempts over the years, but it was always personal. The process becomes easier with practice, and understanding of a foundational concept. Grouping. When people come in my home I sometimes hear that they are not as “creative” as I am. I disagree! The difference might be hinged on a few tips I picked up along the way…

Let’s take a look at putting together a room focal point, in my case a fireplace mantel. If you don’t have one, it is easy to improvise with a buffet table, a dresser or any other flat surface. You might notice there are several groupings. This single building block is an excellent foundation.

Look around your home for large items to fill the wall space. I used three frames (75% off, financial delight!). I normally wouldn’t have purchased anything. If there were some unmatching frames around the house, they would have gotten a simple coat of $1 acrylic paint to become more unified. In this instance these frames will last for years as I change the contents each season. Having previously cased my house for stuff to reuse, I found two silhouettes of my girls from many years ago that had been tucked away. Seeing they are very popular right now, those went in the two black frames. If you like this look, there are several blogs out there with step by step instructions that are very simple. Here is one link  http://wearethatfamily.com/2008/10/diyp21-making-old-fashioned-silhouettes/ I had nothing for the large frame, just an idea for a fall theme. Taping a piece of wrapping paper in the background, I mounted a photo, piece of ribbon and a quote for new artwork. Group of three, practically free.

To the left you’ll notice a group of two candlesticks. Groups do not have to match! Mine seldom do. I might tie a ribbon or attach some other thematic item to unify. Use whatever tall item you have and fill the space.

Under the black frames there is a grouping of books. These might be pulled out by color, theme or topic. A little plug for library book sales; things like this can be found used for about 25 cents. I purchase as much for decorating as reading. If you like a softer look, a large ribbon or raffia can tie them together.

I have started to collect old Mason jars. They can become quite pricey so I noticed the Classico spaghetti sauce jars are just as lovely washed out (center). The outer jars are filled with Epsom salt around the candles. I love the one with a Liberty bell. The center one has a few glass trinkets and a flower plucked from something else.

Things most likely will get moved around until suddenly it will feel just right.There is still something not clicking yet. But, it will.  Please remember, this is just a template. Using what you have around your house will create something equally beautiful, it really will!

Reusing things in unexpected ways is the most delightful way I know to personalize a space.   If this doesn’t come natural, take heart and keep trying. It really does become easier with a little practice. The creative side of the brain (yes, we ALL HAVE it) will remember what worked and help recreate it in future projects.

I’d love to have you post pictures of your décor. What single tip has helped you become motivated to change your space?


About christasterken

Committed to a life of purpose. Learning to live abundantly. Embracing creativity. Questioning. Delighting in the comforts of home and family. Determining not to settle only for how things are, but how they could be. Writing is part of who I am, so I trust In God who gave the gift to show me how I can serve Him through it. That is my life…one word at a time. Psalm 89:11a“Teach me your way , O Lord, and I will walk in your truth”

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