Design Hints

Folksy Fixes

Nancy Woodrow didnít have a decorating strategy in mind for accessorizing her Glen Rock, Pennsylvania, home with folk art. She simply followed her instincts and assembled groupings that pleased her. However, she offers several tips that are easily adaptable to any country-style home.
Folksy Fixes

• Leave it Alone. Imperfections add charm and realism. Nancy doesnít touch up chipped paint, and she doesnít sand out rust. ďI like old finishes,Ē she explains, adding that they illustrate each pieceís history and convey the passage of time.
• Mix, Donít Match. Groupings of unrelated items lend an air of informality. If you want to highlight a selection of sugar bowls, for example, bring interest to the assortment by partnering them with a chipped animal figurine, an oil lamp or a piece of needlework.
• Make It Yourself. Folk art, by definition, is made by folks, and that means you. All you need is an idea. Freehand lettering and uneven stitches are part of the beauty.
• Go Off Kilter. Whether youíre hanging pictures on a wall or arranging treasures on a shelf, aim for asymmetry. Uneven heights and odd numbers of objects give your home a more relaxed feeling than precise measurements and mirror images.
• Think Outside the Box. Just because something is called a shoeshine kit doesnít mean you have to use it that way. Turn it into a side table or a magazine rack. Likewise, a colander can become a fruit bowl and a dresser can be reborn as a bathroom vanity.

Written by Pamela Dittmer McKuen
Photography and Styling by Gridley + Graves