This is why I don’t keep all the things I love.
Because I just absolutely adored this vintage brass étagère I had last summer:
It’s inherent Scarface-factor, the brass (duh), the 1980’s curves… It’s my humble opinion that I parted with it much too cheaply.
But, I am even more deeply, madly, wildly, truly in love with this pair of brass étagères I just recently purchased, styled, and photographed:
Like, whoa. It’s like looking back on a childish crush after you’ve met the man of your dreams… Or contemplating drinking instant coffee instead of French pressed… I’ve moved on. Grown up. And now, only twin brass and glass étagères command my affection!
Although apparently my mind immediately mentally converts “étagère” to “swanky-fab-place-to-store/display-alcohol”. But you have to admit, it’s a great look.
I knew from the instant I laid eyes upon these étagères that I needed to hang black and white abstract artwork inside the largest shelf space.
The only problem was that I didn’t actually have any black and white abstract art at hand.
What I did have were two same-sized pieces of art that I liked and didn’t want to harm in any way.
Some very large sheets of blank paper.
And some black electrical tape.
Styling Secret #1
I wrapped the canvases with the paper like a present and slapped some electrical tape across the surface in a very postmodern, and what I hoped would pass for artistic, fashion. Necessity is the mother of…modern art?
P.S. I actually just realized that what my “masterpieces” are missing is a messy signature scrawled in the bottom corner in black sharpie. It’s not art without a signature. You can sign anything and call it art. Off to sign these babies and catapult to instant fame!
Styling Secret #2
That lovely “tray” isn’t a tray at all. It’s a framed vinyl record of Vivaldi’s “The Four Seasons”!
Styling Secret #3
We were out of whiskey. And that lovely starburst decanter has always been a complete teetotaler, and is not, in fact, full of scotch. Do you know what looks enough like liquor to get by in cases like this? A mixture of coffee and water until you reach the right color, that’s what. Just don’t forget that it’s faux-liquor and mix it into a cocktail by mistake! 😉
Styling Secret #4
Articulated wooden hands. I’m declaring these the “bird” of 2013. Put a hand on it. In all seriousness, I love that these bring in a darker natural element, so any wooden object can serve the same purpose. Another secret to take away: differing heights.
Styling Secret #5
Thrift stores. And brass. (I looove all the different brass patinas going on!) Nearly all of my glassware comes from thrift stores, usually for $1 to $2 per glass. The brass swan bookend and fluted bowl were each 99 cents from Goodwill. I think I paid around $7 for the pair of mid century spiral candlesticks. You can find the most fabulous and unique accessories in a thrift store if you go in with an open mind! Also, hoard things for later use 😉
Speaking of brass, I absolutely adore the deep patina of this vintage brass trunk juxtaposed against the shiny lacquered brass of the étagères. I may have died and gone to brass heaven. (It’s like real heaven, but with streets of brass and shiny little brass animals hopping all over the place.)
So what do you think???
Do you want to join me in brass heaven (after blissfully dying from a brass-overdose, of course)? Do you like my sly little styling secrets? Do you agree with me that disconcertingly realistic wooden body parts are going to be the new “it” thing in decorating? Let’s chat!