the art of layering

Posted October 07, 2011 by Christina


Layering in design is a true art form. It is mastered by a great stylist but in reality can we really live that way?  Is there a spot for my water glass or my collection of work papers?  
How about you have you mastered the art of layering?  Does your home look like a shop?

On good days parts of mine do, but let's face it I live here and life is very busy!

image via



Cindy Albert

I love a shop that is merchandised beautifully. It IS a real art. Realistically it is probably difficult to live that way 24/7. My night stand is always cluttered with books, but somehow they never seem to be organized as neatly as the ones in your beautiful picture.

Happy Friday!

Fri Oct 17 15:09:47 2014


i struggle with this, too….i love my stuff!
i’ve constantly got the word “edit edit edit” running through my brain.

Fri Oct 17 15:09:47 2014

tránsito inicial

a very beautiful corner. In the vase, vegetation.

Fri Oct 17 15:09:47 2014


So true: “let’s face it, I live here.”
I always think the same thing when I see pictures like that! — where do they keep their stuff??

Fri Oct 17 15:09:47 2014


This is indeed a beautiful photo and great styling but where would they put their glasses and books and the other ‘stuff’….maybe it’s all stuffed under the bed….LOL

Fri Oct 17 15:09:46 2014


As beautiful as this table looks, it would be impossible to have that kind of “look” in a house and live in it, especially if you have children. I am always amazed when I see photos like these. How in the world do they keep everything looking so perfect?

Fri Oct 17 15:09:46 2014


Oh Christina, I am always editing, how do I accumulate so much "Stuff"" I am trying to do the “put it back where you got it routine”!!

Ha! Then I get up and find on the table by my small sofa a nail file, wine glass, book, tissue (used), remote, list for grocery, and snacks!

Art by Karena

Fri Oct 17 15:09:46 2014

The Cottage Child

No, my house has never and could never look as staged. The Bohemian mash-up that we have going on does lend itself to layering, though – including layers of dust, as I look at my bookcases and cabinets. I should edit that.

Fri Oct 17 15:09:46 2014

MJH Design Arts

Thank you, thank you, thank you for releasing me from layers of guilt. Once in a while my living room looks “layered” and perfect—and then some mysterious little fairies (I’m Irish) arrive in the middle of the night with mail, magazines, half-read books all dispersed about, and then they sprinkle it heavily with (fairy) dust. As for my office—forget it!! (My shop is always in pretty good shape….split personality?) Mary

Fri Oct 17 15:09:45 2014


I have big passion for still-life arrangements. I need them around in certain places where they can stay as they are – to be dusted off now & then…& to be rearranged for new impressions. This image is great & really, doesn’t have to be beside the bed. Thanks for sharing:)

Fri Oct 17 15:09:45 2014

Hill Country House Girl

Lovely image – reality, of course,is the tissue, the glass of wine or water, the book, the cell phone, etc. Oh well – it’s fun to take the photo when all of those things are moved aside. What a beautiful vignette.

Fri Oct 17 15:09:45 2014


this is perfectly edited and styled. have a great weekend!


Fri Oct 17 15:09:45 2014

Elizabeth Eiffel

A great look. I prefer beauty to practicality!

Fri Oct 17 15:09:45 2014

Miss Frangipani

It’s so nice to see other people worrying about the same thing :) Thanks for starting the discussion, Christina!

Fri Oct 17 15:09:44 2014



This was so timely…as I tried to get just the right “layered” look for my various fall vignettes. You nailed it…is it really practical in all instances, where can I put the book I’m reading, my cup of tea?

Thanks so much for sharing your insights. I love the look but find it too much for some of my tables and space where I need to live.
Karen at Garden, Home and Party

Fri Oct 17 15:09:44 2014


I’m surprised to find myself put off by the clutter in this shot. Ten years ago, I’d have been all over it. Must be age – like most people as they grow older, I’m editing more and more. These days, a few books, a couple of photos, a good lamp and vessel for flowers seems to be all I need to find a corner of my home beautiful. Phew – what a relief!

Fri Oct 17 15:09:44 2014

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greige: (gra, grège, gray)
adj: not bleached or dyed;
unfinished; raw