a curated life : takeaways from the latest lonny

hot of the presses is the august/september issue of lonny mag – one of our all time favorite design mags.

recently, we’ve been circling around the idea of a curated life. we’ve been known to remind friends moving into their first apartments/houses that “life is a collection.” this sentiment is actually part of what went into naming this blog. the things around you, at least in our decorating philosophy, are parts of memories. the people in your life you’ve collected and are a part of your life – that you have curated for yourself.

we prefer to decorate with items that have memories attached to them, and that are a little quirky. what you surround yourself with should be an extension of yourself, your personality, what you are passionate about, what you love.

so, with that philosophy in mind, we were happy to see a lonny full of personalized collections. sure, you could arbitrarily “get the look” in any of the photos in lonny, as well as any other interior decorating mag, or just any picture – it’s easy to break it apart and go buy similar pieces. but we think it’s so much more satisfying to bring a collection together. and sometimes you don’t even realize you have a collection until you are inspired to mimic what is strewn on the pages of your favorite magazine.

check out our takeaways after the jump!

we love the gallery wall that seems to be quite trendy right now.



we love a black and white palette – of no surprise to anyone that reads us frequently – and we love photography. a wall like this could take years to curate. it could take a day. you could go out to a museum, snap some pictures statues and head to ikea for some white frames (after painting the walls a deep color, like black or navy). sure it didn’t take you years to curate the wall, but hey its your art now – totally qualifies in our book.

you should also think outside of the box when it comes to displaying your collections. we’re advocates of purchasing (original) pieces of art when you’re on vacation. but how do you display it all? what if they’re different sizes? colors? what if i can’t find 20 frames that “match.”

well if you think we’re all about matching, then you don’t really know us at all.

it doesn’t have to all match. it just has to make sense for you and for the piece. why not frame a great birthday card you love from your great aunt? why not frame in a HUGE frame a tiny little flower your boyfriend picked for you on a day out? it doesn’t matter what it is – if it makes sense to you and for you, it will make sense to your guests.

layer your pieces. there’s no reason not to put a frame in front of some books, stand unusual sized pieces next to one another.

combine pictures with other collections, like figurines you pick up on a trip.  and don’t be afraid to display a piece a little differently than you would expect – like on a chair.



put pieces together you wouldn’t expect – like a bowl with random things, next to a stack of well loved books.


take over an entire wall with whatever will hang – pictures, clocks, telephones. every piece has a story, it will make sense because it’s YOUR story.


and you can never go wrong with a collection of mirrors on an opposing wall to reflect your collection.


whatever the case may be, don’t rush into taking over a wall or a book case or a coffee table or a credenza with “stuff.” if you rush to fill a space, all you will get is just “stuff” and you’ll feel weighed down by your “things.”

when you choose pieces that have memories, have a personal meaning to you, and reflect who you are, you will have curated a beautiful wall, room, apartment, or house.

and above everything, you’ll have curated a beautiful life for yourself. it doesn’t matter how long it takes to get a room “perfect.” at the end of the day, you have a lifetime to get it right.

all pictures via lonny mag
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