Eclectic Homes

In Praise of Silliness

As I tossed and turned another night, worrying about whether to spring for a cowhide rug or stick with sisal, I couldn’t help but wonder: Why was I carrying my house so badly? Sure, decorating is expensive. But is therapy.

Every now and then, it is necessary to cut loose — to engage your inner child and let your freak flag fly. I am not referring to painting your home in polka dots. I am referring to adding one thing that’s a little unexpected. Perhaps it’s an unusual accent shade or upholstery fabric, or a wall treatment. Or perhaps it’s a thing you’re showing from context — shifting something commonplace to some work of art.

There is nothing really so disarming as a adult who knows how to be a child. I am not on my second youth yet, but I am working on it. After all, I purchased the cowhide.

Evelyn Muller

Get Happy

Not since the Partridge Family boarded their Technicolor bus have I seen such a superb use of color blocking. Why hang artwork on your walls when the whole wall can be a work of art?

The Turett Collaborative

It is Tubular

2 New York City penthouses were united into a single two-story unit, prompting the owner to request a slide linking the two. How great is that? I’ve seen people put fire poles in their homes, too.

Do not laugh — you understand that you want to attempt it!

Roger Hirsch Architect

Different and Delicious

Taken out of context, a 1950s billboard for chewing gum becomes a scintillating bit of pop art. Shout out to Andy Warhol for instructing us to find out the beauty in the mundane.

Precious McBane

Global Warming

A regular object takes on lively airs when it’s discounted to Brobdingnagian proportions. Here it’s a 1960s globe salvaged from a London airline office.

Only Say No?

I adore old indications and have many of these in my home. I like the graphics and the feeling of history — as well as the fact that they’re usually less expensive than a conventional function of art.

In regards to signs, the more incongruous the subject matter, the better. This sign hangs in a Palm Springs resort. I am not certain what kind of message they’re trying to send …

Isolina Mallon Interiors

Write On

Can not afford a classic sign? Create your own. This classic belief was painted right on the bedroom wall.

Meritage Homes

Who Gets to Clap the Erasers?

Wish to write on the walls but can not stand the dedication? Subsequently chalkboard paint is the answer for you. It is available in many different colors, can be applied right over drywall and can be found at paint shops everywhere.

The Locker


These mice silhouettes may be detachable — but who would want to take them off? They may not be well suited for an official entrance (except in Halloween), but they’d look great on the back steps or the basement stairs. Plus, they’d put a grin on your face each time you walked upstairs.



Mice not something? How about cows?

This gorgeous bovine mural came from a European retailer, but you can find similar wall murals on and everywhere online. Do not see something you prefer? Tons of online retailers will make custom murals for you from a photograph.

Duane Kaschak, ID


Who wants animal trophies when you’ve got a monstrous kitty about the wall?

Do not let this thing close to a ball of yarn.



In case you’re a collector, place your collectables out for all to see. Display objects in classes for maximum effect. Even modest items take on weight when they’re displayed together.

Case in point: that group of male fashion dolls gracing a Portland, Oregon, home. Some are dressed to look like the owner’s friends, together with name tags shown above. Who wants photos of your pals when you’ve got small replicas of these?

Lisa Hallett Taylor

Where the Boys Are

Ken not your personality? How about G.I. Joe?

Supon Phornirunlit / Nude Decor


Just how many of us have living rooms that are unforgettable? I am sure if you were invited into this house near Washington, D.C., you’d never, ever overlook the pink poodles.

A tacky object that’s taken out of context can feel energetic and ironic when the surroundings are correct. If this area weren’t so complicated, the dogs would only look gaudy.

Envision living


A ’60s-style print makes a formal chair texture startlingly fresh. (And honestly, how can you take anything seriously beneath that painting?)

Animal prints are just another fantastic way to dress a traditional chair. Still too extreme? Try upholstering only the back of a dining chair in an unexpected fabric.

Megan Buchanan

Tread on Me

Wallpaper, stencils, home numbers — when it comes to stairs, they’re all fair game.

Northern Sky Developments

Merrily, Merrily

Life is but a dream when you suspend a gorgeous object from the ceiling. Vintage rowboats, canoes, bicycles and neon signs can make magical overhead.

Of course, beauty is in the eye of the beholder: I visited the house of artist Dale Chihuly, who had a group of accordions suspended from his ceiling. It worked, because there were lots of these (see “Playing with Dolls,” above), and because the tools needed a personal significance to him — he played the accordion when he was a child.

Your turn: Please show us your home’s silly side!

See related