Tuesday, September 21, 2010


Christina at Griege calls it "objects of interest." Shari at Little Blue Deer has the great phrase "rustic ephemera." Then there's Thomas O'Brien, the "collector decorator" at Four Walls and a Roof.

What's a girl to do but add more stuff?

So I tried, starting with this mini leather suitcase that I found discarded. Definitely rustic (e.g. beat up) if not ephemera.

Inside I keep a microcosm of my full treasure trove of buttons and belts and beads.

It looked a little lonely by itself.

I added my camera and a notebook.

And then stopped.

And later saw Lindsey Bond's Alabama cottage in the October issue of House Beautiful.

Sigh. The white sofas. The spare art. The lack of stuff. So me. And here's what Lindsey says:

"Pristine white, clean lines, symmetry, neatness: that's what I call serenity . . . I do use objects sparingly, because I don't like clutter. It makes me so nervous."

So here's my "collected yet spare" vignette. In the time it took me to create this, Christi at Charm Home decorated a whole house.

How about you? Collector or minimalist or somewhere in between?

Images: Via Griege; Roman and Williams via Cabbage Rose; Thomas O'Brien via Four Walls and a Roof; Jonny Valiant for House Beautiful via Bellevue and Rose.


  1. Somewhere in between. I'm not a fan of clutter either, but love a well put together vignette. Yours looks really great!

  2. I've always been an "add more stuff" girl.
    Thanks for the inspiration. Love your blog and looking forward to cruising the archives.

  3. I love the white desk in that first photo! Lovely post!

  4. Tonia of Chic Modern VintageSeptember 22, 2010 at 4:05 AM

    I kinda like stuff,I know you didn't ask but I would add a candle, much larger picture behind the three you already have, include a few more branchs in the vase, and about 3 coffee table books :)

  5. Your vignette is beautiful. Perfectly balanced and by no means clutterish. Would you have a moment to come round and pile my stuff together artistically for me?

  6. I love this post-Im a big collector of accessories! But I do limit myself. I want it to feel like a HOME.

  7. shari @ little blue deerSeptember 22, 2010 at 12:19 PM

    Holy crap! I was just coming over to say hi, and there is my quote! Woo hoo, I feel famous! I have a deep-seated love for old vintage suitcases, it should be known. And in response to Lindsey Bond's comment, I say, pile on the clutter and pop a Xanax! XX!

  8. chelsea lee aka spicklebeeSeptember 22, 2010 at 2:10 PM

    I'm definitely an in-between. I like minimalist lines and a clean look, but I'm definitely one to create little vignettes wherever possible...hence the name of my blog!!

    your vignette looks divine and I love the way you showed off your abstract art ;)

  9. I'm thinking about rethinking the branches (aka "the sticks" as my husband calls them.) More of them or something different. Maybe a real plant.

  10. very merry vintage styleSeptember 22, 2010 at 7:34 PM

    Sometimes i like stuff and sometimes i don't! mostly i do, but sometimes i clear it away for a breather between seasons. I do have to get better at letting go of some of my former favorites when I bring home the new... An Etsy shop in the future, maybe!