Home decorating guide

Freshen up your living spaces with color, smart display, and strategies for maximizing style

10 rules of freestyle decorating

Expert tips on how to make the most of what you have and indulge with care

Shun Labels
Thomas J. Story

Shun labels

Combine eras, price points, and styles.

“I love mixing time periods and styles so they work together,” says Sheridan. The combination makes the vintage seem current and the contemporary pieces less stark. In her dining room, she’s mixed mass-market bargains with a few design 
treasures. “Adding one element can change a whole look,” she says.

A midcentury Saarinen table and chair combine with 
a new chair from West Elm (similar-style chair $99). Pillar candles from Pottery Barn fill the fireplace; the mantel is home to several balls of string, saved by Sheridan’s grandmother, plus 19th-century candelabra. Hanging over it all is a vintage George Nelson saucer lamp (new ones from $300 at Design Within Reach).

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