Alright lovelies? It’s Mandy today with the start of a new series with a theme that’s pretty much a reflection of my life. Good old Organised Chaos, maybe not so productive in our day-to-day lives, but certainly appealing (to me, at least) in a decor context. I’m all for a spot of clutter and artful disarray when it comes to interiors and my husband has been known to ask if I’m running a thrift-shop from our shelves and counters and surfaces. Obviously too much excess and your space will look like it’s a contender for one of those TLC shows titled Buried Alive or Hoarders, but what gives a home its heart is, to whatever degree you’re comfortable with, the flotsam and jetsam we’ve collected along the way, be it vintage finds or hand-me-downs or homeware chain store buys and other pieces that are functional, decorative or both. Naturally these casual arrangements don’t just happen by sprinkling magic dust over your stuff and hoping for the best. There are tricks to getting the look in a way that is uncontrived but still aesthetically pleasing and styled (though I do use the word styled very loosely, it can’t look as if it’s trying too hard). These lovely and characterful kitchen spaces all have the formula right, and here’s why:
* While there’s lots and lots of stuff, there’s also a logic to how things have been arranged: everyday objects within easy reach, less used pieces higher up or stored underneath
* Colours are fairly restrained and/or honed in, with the occasional material or lighter/darker/different but complimentary colour or/and pattern in the mix. More mix-and-match than free-for-all
* The same goes for the specific aesthetics of the pieces: they all have a very similar look and feel, connected either by their provenance and/or shapes and/or materials, with a few unique pieces thrown in to break up any monotony and sameness
* Imperfections are celebrated, but not to the extent that there are pieces that are beyond repair or unusable. A barely-there crack here, a discolouration there, a wonky shape or worn-from-use handle is fine; chips (especially in glass), noticeable (and unhygienic) deep cracks and unpalatable stains, nope!
* The object/s on which items are displayed and arranged can have a thrifty/vintage provenance or be of-the-moment floating and pigeon-hole shelves. It’s really about the content and the open-display vibe at the end of the day
* There are little pause spaces, not always obvious, but definitely there. Because the catchword is clutter, not claustrophobia
* Books, plants, decorative objects also have a role to play in these sorts of displays
So there you have it. Not everyone’s cup of tea, but definitely inspiring for us maximalists, clutter bugs and style enthusiasts who approach decorating their homes with a curatorial MO.