We love the little things that mean a lot; like the cinnamon swirl on the perfect cappuccino, or the cherry on the cupcake – it just wouldn’t be the same without them.

And the same goes for accessories. We put a huge amount of thought into decorating and furnishing our homes, thinking of colour, shape, style and even light – but in the end, it’s the finishing touches that complete and define our rooms.

This is the area where you can really let your personality shine through. Many of the accessories we choose to display are personal treasures collected over years – a charity shop picture frame, a pretty antique cup or a carved African figure.

New accessories need to bring us the same kind of pleasure and appeal as our objets trouves – and they’re equally important in bestowing character on our rooms.

For instance, a rug can bring a huge amount of colour and texture to a room, lifting the tone and creating a sense of luxury. The Aztec Rug from Barker and Stonehouse manages to do all of that while looking like the best kind of souvenir of exotic places – I’d pick out the main colours to form a palette for other accessories such as cushions and throws in the room.


I like my accessories to be striking in themselves; sculptural, even – and I think the Bentwood Hat Stand fulfils that while also being immensely practical. Traditional and beautiful in style, it’s the perfect storage solution for a hallway, or would look amazing as a statement piece in the corner of a room decked with vintage hats.

hat stand

Metallic accessories always add extra interest to a room, where sheen can create a subtle yet significant effect. This is particularly so when you combine it with a mirror such as the Bali Metal Round Mirror, where the metal is tinged with natural colour to create surprisingly organic feel.

Bali mirror

White-toned accessories can also be a real asset if you’re going for a clean feel in your room. I’m highly impressed with the funky Mr White Station Clock, which would add a subtle touch to any space.

Mr White Station Wall Clock

If you dare to go dark, a flat black finish can give a contemporary edge to your accessories in a more subtle way – the Bowes 4 Ceiling Light Lantern is an elegant pendant that would suit many different kinds of setting.

Barker & Stonehouse. Bowes light ceiling lantern, £225

The beauty of accessories is that you can experiment, trying different things in different places until you get the look exactly right – and you can refresh your room by having an accessory swap, such as changing the rug or cushions (love the tie-dye fabric of the Ikat Cushion, by the way – a perfect retro touch).


Try not to clutter but treat each accessory as a precious piece worthy of display in its own right.

You’ve worked hard on your furnishings and decoration; and your room deserves great accessories – and so do you!

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