My Eclectic Style

As I’ve shared before, I grew up without a ton of money. Even when my husband and I were first married, he was doing his residency, so we didn’t have extra money then either. I think the combination of that background and my creativity has been the foundation of my eclectic decorating style.

When I was a kid, I used to look around on trash day at all of the things people tossed out; and inevitably I’d end up hauling this or that home. To this day, I’m still that way. If a friend says they have something to give away, I jump on it – whether I need it or not (usually not).

Often, if I can’t find a home for it inside my house, I’ll go searching in the yard for “just right spot,” – consequently, I have a lot of busts and things around my yard.

Bust in the Yard

I also love going to swap meets, and have inexpensively filled my home with the great hand-colored drawings, etchings and other treasures that I’ve found at those. I will often fill a wall space with collections of several pieces hanging together. I’m not one for doing things by way of exact measurements, but I do plan. For wall collections I lay the pictures on the floor and map out an arrangement, leaving 1-2” between each (the equal spacing helps it not look so hodge podge). Once I’ve found an arrangement I like, I hang them on the wall that way.

How to hang collections

Taking all of that into account, as you can imagine, my house is full. But, it has such a warm, cozy vibe that everyone who visits loves it. Wall color helps with that vibe too, but that’s a discussion for another blog…

I love helping friends with their homes too. This week, I helped a friend who wanted some input on where she has things hanging in her home. We captured our little session on video so I could share it with you.

At the end of the day, none of the decorations in your home (including the color of the walls) is permanent. So go out on a limb and try something new, or mix and match things – you’ll be surprised at the great looks you discover. And, if you try something you don’t like  … you can always change it.


  1. Patricia K

    Another great Blog Mary Beth. I am loving your eclectic style. I am loving your walls so much that I am going to do a wall of photos like yours in my rec room. I have framed photos in storage and I am getting them out and will now be displaying them on my wall.
    Seriously Mary Beth, you should have your own Home and Garden TV show. You are amazing and so creative.

  2. Love your walls Mary Beth.. That is exactly my style.. I just did my mother’s kitchen & living room walls for her for Mother’s day in a very eclectic way. It makes the home “homey”, I think. I love styles from all over the world and mixing old and new And throwing it all together and seeing what happens. My mother is annoyed with me as I have an excellent eye for details and colors and uncanniness of never needing to measure walls. LOL! I put up what I consider the focal point of the wall *which doesn’t have to be in the center* and then go for much fun. =)

  3. Love this blog Mary Beth. Unlike last weeks blog about being fearless with recipes or in the kitchen, I do love to decorate. (Not too much of a chef though.) With my job, I am in different people’s homes all the time, and I love to see how people decorate. I get a ton of ideas. Also my mother is great decorator & thankfully she passed down the love of decorating to me. My husband always tells people he doesn’t know where the furniture will be when he gets home. Haha. I love changing it up & adding little things, which can make a huge difference. Thanks again for sharing a part of your life with us. You are adorable!

  4. Those are some great ideas. I like to hang things on my walls, but I think I’m too picky about what I want and I don’t have a lot of wall space in my living room with a fireplace. However, I do have a long hallway I should be utilizing more.

  5. Another great blog this week MB… Just loves your eclectic style! I’m from the south and am currently helping my hubby renovate our “old” country house but still want to keep that old southern feeling & look of the house!..we have found lots of pictures and many different items for the house at flea markets, tradedays, antique shops & yard sales! I have worked all these items into what I call my “southern eclectic style”….so thanks for sharing your decorating styles! I’ve truly enjoy reading your blog this week and especially the video! As always thanks for sharing your ideas with us fans Mary Beth!

  6. When you’re next in Chicago please come over. Now I’m thinking about all my badly hung stuff. You should charge a fee. Next Entrepreneurial Business Idea Alert!

  7. Christine

    Great ideas Mary Beth. If you are ever in the Colorado Springs area I could use your help in my house!

  8. You do have an eye for this Mary Beth-a really good eye that can ‘see’ the look before you do it. A seriously great talent that I wish I had. Maybe interior decorator should be added to your resume if you ever tire of acting!!

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