Do you wonder how to make the magic happen in a room, where all the colors, textures and pieces fit together just right? Maybe you’ve tried it several times and somehow the end result was off, but you couldn’t figure out why? Did you spend a lot of money buying pieces you loved but were not happy with the way everything looked together? Is there some magic formula to make it happen? Why yes, there is! Start with the art!
I may be a little biased, because I am both a designer and an artist, but it works for me! All designers have their own way of doing things and this is what I do. I start with the art and build my color palette and the rest of the room around it.
Start with the Art
So, what do I mean by art? It does not have to be what you typically think of. such as art you hang on the wall, although it could be. It could be a great rug, which is art for your floor. Maybe you have a fantastic view, which is built in art on your windows. It could be an inspiration piece such as a beautifully designed piece of furniture or a wonderful antique. Or even an architectural element such as a gorgeous fireplace could be the “art”.
Consider the colors, textures, the style and mood your art conveys. Take cues from the art to build the rest of the room to harmonize with and highlight the art. Often, I use more than one piece of “art” and work with the combination. Here is an example where I used three sources of art to build the design for this beach house.
The Primary Art- The View
In this Edesign, the main source of art is the view. The view is so beautiful and there is so much of it in the large expanse of glass, the view can not and should not be ignored. The view sets the color palette of various shades of blues, whites, and browns. It also sets the tone of a coastal style that is relaxed and peaceful. It adds texture, from soft and flowing from the sand and water, to hard and angular from the rocks.
The Secondary Art
To highlight and harmonize with the art in the view, the next pieces I looked for were the rugs, or the art for the floor. The main rug pulled in the colors from the view with the addition of a light purple and a touch of green which expanded the color palette. The colors from the rug and the view were used to determine fabric colors for the furniture and the wall color. A second rug highlighted the dining area and used mainly blues.
And finally, I selected supporting art for the walls. The main art is the view of the ocean on 2 walls. I created fractal art designs of the “Sea” for the third wall and for the accent pillows. The colors and design match the ocean views and the blues in the two area rugs, tying it all together.
Shop This Look
The remaining pieces all harmonize with and support the “art” and of course the function of the room. Some of the products may contain affiliate links.
Get This Design as a Virtual Zoom Background
Do you like this design? Why not use it as a virtual background for your Zoom calls? Click on the picture to download it and submit a vote for me in the MYZOOMROOM contest! See more of my virtual designs in my blog article, Up Your Game and Look Great on Zoom.
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Absolutely art can be so many things! Gah – those rugs – I want those!! These are all my favorite colors and ocean would be my preferred view in my ideal world! Gorgeous renderings!
Thanks Janet, I love the colors and the view for the beach house too. I am always drawn to the water and the ocean as well. Luckily, I live with an ocean view!
Thank you so much Janet!! Rugs are often my favorite art! Same here, my favorite colors too and love being able to look at the ocean and hear the sounds of the waves!
I love the creative ZOOM background, Mary Ann…it’s really pretty!
Thanks so much Leslie!
I have never thought of art as primary, secondary and supporting. Thank you for writing this and brining it to my attention! 🙂
This just is the process that I find myself using alot for my designs. I had never really thought of it as a process until I wrote this blog and thought of how often I do this. I’m sure others may put the art last as a finishing touch, but it works for me:)
Great steps, starting with art to create a spectacular space!
Thank you Suzi!
I have used layering of lighting as you do too but never layers of art Mary Ann. Great post and wonderful art and rugs!
Thank you so much! Yes, layering lighting is another way to make the magic happen!
I absolutely love blue, the selections you made are beautiful.
Thank you so much Christina!
I love all of the stunning selections you made, and what great steps that I had not thought of! Thank you so much for sharing such valuable information with us Mary Ann.
Thanks so much Sabina! I’m glad it was helpful!
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