If you walk into your living room right now, what is the first design element that catches your eye? Is it a vivid area rug, like the one above? A bold patterned chair? An oversized light fixture? A large painting you picked up on your European holiday a few years back?
When you enter a space and your eye is immediately pulled to a feature of interest, that’s what we call a statement piece. Although the term “statement” sounds as if you are making a declaration for all to know, adding a statement piece to your home has a more diverse and benevolent purpose…
What is the role of a statement piece in your space?
- Infuses your and your family’s personalities into the space (read here for more ideas)
- Brings your personal experiences into your home, evokes fonds memories, and sparks joy
- Becomes an intriguing conversation piece
- Acts as a jumping off point for the design scheme, directing the colour palette or style
For example, this oversized group of globe light fixtures is the statement piece of the dining area and kitchen in our Lynn Valley Modern Home project. It simultaneously adds a sense of grandeur and weightlessness, satisfying our clients’ desire for a modern feel in their space and providing just the statement that they were looking for.
Beautiful. Functional. Personal.
How can you add statement pieces into your home? How do we do so for our clients and make it look effortless? Here are 3 rules of thumb…
1. Only one item should be a statement piece.
The point of a statement piece is to capture interest and stand out in your space. If you have multiple items competing for attention, the room will feel like it’s having an argument instead of a lively conversation. This is why there can only be ONE statement piece in any given room. The rest of the room should be the supporting cast.
A great example: For our clients’ living room, I selected this bold watercolour as the statement piece over their fireplace. They not only loved it, but it perfectly captured the modern feel they requested. The piece then became the foundation for a harmonious colour palette: a base of warm neutrals accented by cool ocean blues and a splash of deep, sunset orange that complements rather than competes.
I don’t know for certain, but I would guess that guests — family, friends and neighbours — enjoy this piece just as much as our clients do!
2. Select a statement piece that is timeless.
Your statement piece will likely inspire the rest of your decor, so if you select something trendy, well… your whole room can quickly feel dated. Instead, I always look for and suggest items that feel timeless and won’t go out of style in 10 years. This not only ensures a smart furnishings investment but also contributes to your enduring happiness with your home.
The statement piece in our Refined Edgemont Rancher project was this spicy cinnamon-coloured rug, but unlike the living room I shared above, the statement piece didn’t inspire the rest of the room… our clients’ art did!
We pulled out the warm tone in one of their key pieces (gracing the entryway) and used it as a jumping off point for the rest of the room: the earthy yet vivid statement carpet, modern pieces in calm neutrals, and dark, grounding woods for balance. The effect is warm, soothing, and — you guessed it — timeless.
3. Choose a statement piece that has special meaning to you.
Speaking of your happiness, another important requisite for a statement piece is that it feels meaningful to you. If you don’t love the artwork you received as a wedding gift from your aunt, it shouldn’t be the star of your newly renovated living room. Instead, think of pieces that make you smile, have a story behind them, or whisk you back in time to a special memory. (P.S. Travel is a great opportunity to find pieces that feel unique and meaningful to you.)
The chaise lounge in our Kitsilano Urban Cottage project is a perfect example of a piece with stories behind it. A family antique, this piece conjures up memories of our client seated in her grandmother’s lap, reading a book together. When I heard that story, I knew it had to play a major role in the design.
We used the new upholstery fabric in a linen and light blue woven as a jumping off point for the room’s colour scheme. The chaise is given pride of place in the front window where the sun ensures it is in the spotlight. Our client’s grandmother’s keepsakes from beaches around the world are also lovingly displayed on the built-in bookshelf and integrated into a family gallery wall.
This is now a room where the beautiful past shapes this family’s present and future at home.
Final Tip: Have a Holistic Vision for Your Space
In order to achieve all of the above, it is important to start with a holistic vision for your space. We are able to create rooms that feel cohesive, complete, and intentional because we plan them that way from the start. We don’t purchase anything until the layout is finalized and every piece has been selected and approved.
This is how a home evolves from a physical structure to a place filled with emotion, meaning, and the simple luxuries that make the everyday special. If you can do this — or will let us do it for you — you will see your home, and how you experience it, transform before your eyes. Guaranteed.