In this video I’m going to show you how to fix two of the most common decorating mistakes using visual triangles. Of course, first I’m going to need to show you what a visual triangle is. This is a more advanced strategy, but stick with me because it will make decorating so much easier for you and I know you can do this. Welcome to Home Styling 101. I’m Jackie Hernandez and in this series, I’m going to teach you how to arrange your home décor and home accessories. A visual triangle is a way of thinking about arranging your décor so that when you look at it head on, it creates the shape of a triangle.
I’ve got three examples for you here. Our three finials are creating a visual triangle. Tallest in the middle tapering out to the sides. Our stack of books with an object on top is another type of visual triangle. Back here, we’ve got the globe, the candle, and the vase, that are also creating a visual triangle. You can use visual triangles like these to fix décor that looks haphazard or cluttered. One mistake I often see people make with their décor is arranging a bunch of things together that are all too similar in height. The result is a very boxy arrangement without a lot of visual interest. We want to use the concept of visual triangles to fix this décor mistake. I’m going to use one of the tricks that I shared in the video about elevating your décor.
In this case, I’m going to use two different height candle sticks to change the height of these jars. Once I’ve done that, we can rearrange this décor like so and with that simple change, we’ve taken what was a boxy lifeless arrangement and created a really nice visual triangle. The second mistake I often see is what I call the mountain range effect, where all of your décor is lined up and it goes up and down and up and down creating a mountain range. It’s simply because you don’t know how to visually arrange the décor. Nothing is wrong with any of the décor up here and it can all look great together, you just have to know how to arrange it.
This mountain range effect happens a lot on shelves, mantles, and when you’re trying to work in picture frames. Let me show you in this example how to use visual triangles to fix the mountain range effect. You want to start with your tallest object in the center and then you’re going to taper out to the sides. We’re going to take the second tallest finials and move him over here. In this scenario, these frames are basically the same size, and I want to change it up a little bit, so I’m going to use a plate rack to give this guy a little bit extra height over here. When we do that, he becomes the second tallest on that side and we’re tapering out. We’ll put this guy here, and you don’t have to quite be literal about putting the shortest things on the ends of your arrangement, you can layer them in the front a little bit, but we still have an overall visual triangle happening here.
Just with those few teaks, we already have a much better looking arrangement. Once you get your basic visual triangle figured out, you can play around with the staggering and don’t be afraid to stagger your items and layer them a little bit to create some more interest and depth in the arrangement. That’s how you fix the mountain range effect with visual triangles. There’s two more advanced tips I want to quickly touch on about visual triangles. When I taught you to create a visual triangle, I showed you how to make a symmetrical visual triangle.
As you get more practice and get a little more advanced, I want you to try creating asymmetrical visual triangles as well. That’s where your tallest item is off to one side and you taper down to the other side. This type of arrangement also looks really great. The second type is for arrangements that you can see from all sides like on a coffee table or a dining table. It’s helpful to think of a visual cone instead of a visual triangle. Put your tallest item in the center and then you want to taper out radiating around that piece creating a visual cone.
Visual triangles bring visual order to your décor. I want you to try using visual triangles everywhere. From your night stands, to your dining table, to your book shelves. This video was just an introduction to visual triangles, and we’re going to talk about them more again later in this series. Now, download the Try This At Home styling recipe with detailed instructions so that you can try this tip in your home. .