Playing Vignettes | Sofa Table Styling

Accessorise Definition

I’m sure I’m not alone in labeling the act of accessorising one of the most transformative and enjoyable in home beautification.

Not only does this final layer help bring a room to life, it’s also just plain fun messing around with a bunch of beautiful objects (and, as far as decorating on a budget goes, there’s no denying the affordable impact some carefully considered styling can impart).

I used to re-arrange all the ornamental vignettes in my home often, though now, with a three and one year old, I find it’s a bit counter-productive. I’ve noticed that stagnant vignettes can remain ignored for several months though as soon as I move anything around the kids’ interest is suddenly piqued, and sure enough, five minutes later my pretty new arrangement is little more than a disheveled pile of discarded ‘play things’.

I know in a few years I’ll be the one playing around with the accessories once more, though for now I do miss it.

Which is why I was excited when my mum mentioned she was looking at doing some zhooshing in her lounge room. Rather fortuitously, her announcement coincided with an email from the guys at Super Amart who were looking to showcase some of their affordable homewares. Gotta love it when the universe aligns!

I fell in love with these BIG glass statement lamps (being cleared for half price – the website states $89 though I got mine for just $70 each in store!) so decided to make them my jumping-off point.

Now, just to work out where to put them.

I could have done the regular side table thing though mum had a big blank wall behind one of her couches which was just crying out for something.


See what I mean?

Soooo, we shifted the couch forward slightly, slotted in a narrow sofa table and set to work making things look pretty.

The Power of Accessorising

Aside from the gorgeous lamps, which I love even more now, and the big original abstract, which you can read more about below, we used things we already owned. Mum and I are fortunate to share similar taste so we often swap stuff around and even have a joint collection of ‘excess’ decor we can switch and change from.

Sofa Table Styling

Although there is nothing extravagant or expensive about this vignette I like to think it has a gentle sophistication, the contrasting elements working in harmony to impart a fresh, collected feel. And whilst it’s far from perfect to me there’s just something so lovely about the perfect imperfection of rustic meets refined (and something so rewarding about making the most of things you already own to create a new look on a tight budget).

Elegant Glass Lamp

When creating vignettes I usually have some kind of vision in mind however find I generally end up using more elements than originally planned. I don’t know what it is. I tend to like the look of quite clean, sparse-ish vignettes in photos though struggle when attempting to emulate that simplicity myself. I guess deep down I just like more stuff! Not too much though.

Sofa Table Vignette

When dressing the couch we actually had both green and blue velveteen cushions to choose from. Green is one of my absolute favourite accent colours to use when decorating though in this case I opted for blue to reference the artwork and give some relief from the foliage of the ferns.

Here’s a Photoshoped version which shows the green cushions instead.

Sofa Table Styling with Green Cushions

Which do you prefer? Blue or green?

Styling with Different Coloured Cushions

Either way, it’s a pretty cohesive scheme; the blue ties-in with the art, the green ties-in with the foliage. I guess it just depends how much you love green :-)

I’m not totally convinced with the boldness of the stripe on the lumbar cushion. I guess it does help break-up the solids though. Again, it’s really just a matter of personal preference.

Now, just in case anyone is wondering how the big original artwork isn’t “extravagant” or “expensive” I should probably mention that I painted it myself! Whilst I’m under no illusion it’s any kid of masterpiece it does look good (if I do say so myself :-) and works well in the space. It took me a few goes to achieve the look I was after though once I discovered the techniques I needed to use it was actually really easy…and fun! If you’d like to see a tutorial let me know and I might give it a go :-)

Sofa Table Styling

I realise it’s a bit skimpy only sharing this one snippet of the room with you, though the rest of the makeover is still in the works. I would promise a future full reveal however have no idea when the space will actually be complete. Regardless, I hope this tidbit does help highlight the power of accessorising. I’ve heard styling referred to as nothing more than ‘smoke and mirrors’ though I’m comfortable admitting it’s my kind of illusion!

Room Styling Before and After | The Painted Hive

Room Styling Before and After | The Painted Hive

Ahhh, playing vignettes – one of my absolute fave pastimes. Maybe I need to get out more!

Vignette Styling

Couldn’t resist squeezing this pic of Cooper in. I tried getting a shot of my parent’s dog though he was too fidgety. Gotta hand it to Coops, he might shed hair like a yeti though at least he’s an obedient model.



This post was sponsored by Super Amart.
Read my full advertising policy and disclosure statement here.


  1. Genie says:

    I really think this is quite stunning Kristine, especially given the way you went about things. The symmetry of those lovely lamps teamed with the asymmetry of your other chosen objects is a perfect balance. I would like to see a tutorial for the artwork too if you can find the time.

  2. Tessa says:

    I think you made the right choice using blue pillows. It’s actually really interesting seeing the difference side by side. Love those lamps too. What a great buy.

  3. Heather HS says:

    I would love the tutorial for the painting!

  4. Jane M says:

    Absolutely beautiful! The green pillows look just as good as the blue. It is always nice to be able to change things up a little. Your artwork is stunning. Please share a tutorial with us!!!! I have been trying to get up the courage to try something like this and yours is just what I am looking for. I would love to know how you achieved this look.

    • Thanks Jane. I think due to demand I will have to seriously look into creating a tutorial for the artwork. I’ve always enjoyed drawing and painting though have never attempted abstracts before so I totally get what you mean about working up the courage.

  5. Cindy says:

    Pleeeeeeease show me how to do this sort of artwork? Love it!

  6. Kathy says:

    This is such a fun post. Love your comparison of colors. Yes! Please do a tut on the painting technique. I love to play vignette too, almost a disorder, ha! It gets even stronger w age. Hard not to vignette in a store while shopping.

    • Ha, ha. If it gets stronger with age then I’m in serious trouble Kathy!

  7. pam b says:

    LOVE the painting!!! Please post a tutorial!

  8. Stacey says:

    I do love it! Leather couches are always great because they are pretty and durable but not necessarily cozy. You put all the pieces together to make it cozy. :)

    • Thanks Stacey. That’s actually a really lovely compliment.

  9. Maryann says:

    I love every bit of this vignette! Gorgeous! I would love the tutorial on how to do the painting. Much appreciated!

  10. Gaye says:

    Yes!!! to the tutorial. Although I have painted for years, I’ve never done anything like that – love it! And it would adapt beautifully to any color combination. Thank you.

  11. Susie Fendley says:

    Can we see a picture of just the sofa table? I am looking to build one out of old wood and yours looks GREAT. Can you send me a picture? THANKS!!!

    • Hi Susie
      The sofa table is actually an old bench seat. It’s the same as the bench at the foot of my bed (they came as a pair – My dad simply removed the legs and added some longer ones with a brace. If you are looking at building something similar I’m sure there are lots of great tutorials out there.

  12. Kay says:

    A tutorial? Yes, please! I love your paintings and am trying my hand at it, so any help is appreciated. Thank you!

  13. A says:

    I would love a tutorial on the art!

  14. T says:

    Blue pillows.

    I LOVE LOVE LOVE the painting. Please post a tutorial. I have a huge boring living room wall that is begging for something pretty like this to hang on it.

    Thank you!

  15. Janet says:

    I LOVE blue and use it a lot in my house, but I prefer the green pillows!

  16. Kelley says:

    Love, love, love. I like both pillow colors, but I think the blue really pulls in the artwork. And yes, a tutorial on how you did that would be great! Yours is one of the few home blogs I still follow. Although you don’t post a lot, everything you do post is inspiring and doable. Thank you for sharing your (and your parent’s) house with us.

  17. Susan says:

    I would love to see a tutorial on how to do the painting. It’s gorgeous.

  18. Tami says:

    I love the artwork. Please, please, please a tutorial on how you did this!

  19. élise says:

    un goût exquis
    j’aime beaucoup ce chocolat et turquoise
    très tendance
    bonne soirée

  20. Linda says:

    Would love to see a tutorial of the painting

  21. lee says:

    Nicely done! And, “yes, please”… let’s see a tutorial for your artwork.

  22. Katy says:

    Everything is lovely. Especially like the lamps and the ferns. I think the glass is an unexpected touch which contrasts yet harmonizes with the natural elements.

  23. Tessa says:

    I bought two of these lamps after you shared them on your Facebook page so it was really great to see how you used them. Such a great price. I was surprised just how big they were.

  24. Jeanna says:

    I love the blue pillows :) A tutorial on the painting would be awesome! How fun. Just a lovely before and after.

  25. Natalie says:

    Wow – what a lovely transformation. I always forget how useful the humble sofa table can be… I appreciate the reminder. I would LOVE a tutorial on the painting. I love abstract works, and this is really lovely.

  26. Jo says:

    Phew I must be getting it right now looking at this. On my kids long study desk in living room I have a picture the same size and shape as yours from Freedom, the same lamp (thanks to your buying tip) to one side and a fern next to that. Though I have a cute old small cupboard other side though to hide the school books. Glad to know I’m finally getting away from cluttered to classy. I like the blue cushions best and gorgeous painting.

    • Thanks Jo.
      Not totally convinced I should be looked to for “getting it right” though it’s really lovely and flattering to hear you say that. Let’s just go with the clear fact that we both must simply be awesome :)

  27. Ruth says:

    Amazing what a different feel the accessories impart. Would you pretty PLEASE share a tutorial?

  28. Trudi says:

    Oh just lovely, I wish I had your eye, I am getting better though, thanks to your help.
    II know you do not have as much time now, with the two children keeping you busy, but I would love it if you posted the tutorial on how to paint the picture.
    Many thanx

  29. Marg says:

    I love your blog and would love to see how you painted the beautiful artwork!
    :) Thank you

  30. Renee says:

    I love your vignette. Must admit, I always though Super Amart was daggy. Just checked out there site though and it is actually really great. Maybe the’ve changed or maybe I never looked properly in the first place though I really like some of their stuff. Thanx for the enlightenment :)
    Renee T

  31. Jelaine says:

    Love everything Kristine! The blue cushions certainly work well with the art. I really love that painting so I’d be really interested in a tutorial if you ever have the chance. I have just the space for a fabulous piece of artwork like this ;)

    • He, he. Artwork tutorial is a definite go-er after all the requests. I’ve been really surprised by the response to it. Who knows how the next painting will turn out though – fingers crossed my first attempt wasn’t a total fluke!

  32. Peggy says:

    So fun! Gorgeous colors, and the painting! Don’t sell your painting talent short. It is beautiful and perfect with your vignette. Is it oils or acrylic? I’d March that right down to your local gallery and put a couple $$(1000’s) on it.

    Very inspiring, thanks!

    • He, he. Thanks Peggy. I have used oils predominantly in the past, though this is an acrylic.

  33. Laura says:

    Artwork tutorial is just what I have been seeking and have found so few. I love the movement and colors. Please consider doing this and soon. We just moved in and have nothing on the walls yet. Would love for you to share your expertise and thanks for the vingette as it is so clean and coastal. Usually like green, but leaning towards the blue this time.

  34. Sarah in France says:

    Oh Wow! Stunning! I love the blue cushions the best and it’s amazing just how much of a difference one item in colour can make to the whole look. The arrangement looks restful and effortless, yet it’s precisely the beautiful use of colour, textures and items that marry up so well that make it look so balanced. I have a hallway table in my entrance in my chalet that is just crying out for such a makeover.
    And, yes post the painting tutorial.

    • Thanks Sarah. What a lovely comment. Will def be doing an artwork tutorial after all the requests I have received. Bit overwhelmed by the response to it actually!

  35. Sarah says:

    Love the color combo! I for one would love a paint tutorial – it’s gorgeous!

  36. Mary says:

    Beautiful job, as usual! For me definitely the blue cushions.

  37. Gorgeous! My favorite color would have to be green but I love the blue pillows! And that painting!! So beautiful! What else can you do?? :)

  38. Sharon says:

    How beautiful! I LOVE the lamps, and your artwork is exquisite. Great choice on the blue pillows. The color palette is my favorite…and what I use in my own home…right down the brown leather couch. I’m actually on the search for a sofa table.

    • Thanks Sharon. Gotta love brown leather couches – pretty and oh so practical!

  39. dorelle andersen says:

    Please, please, please do a tutorial on the artwork it is stunning and really finishes off the room so nicely. Many thanks

  40. Jenn says:

    I like the blue, it flows beautifully and would love to see the tutorial on your artwork. I love to draw and paint but everything I do gets hidden in a corner because I decide it’s terrible.
    You so inspire and I love your work.

    • We are so self-critical. I’m sure your work isn’t nearly as terrible as you believe Jenn. In fact, I bet it’s probably quite lovely. I have been working on the artwork tute though it’s very tricky to paint and produce a how-to guide at the same time! Hopefully I can pull it off.

  41. I love this room, and am so jealous that you and your mom can share accessories. I prefer the blue, so good choice, and would love love love to see a tutorial on that abstract painting/canvas stretching/framing.

    • Thanks. The abstract artwork tutorial is in the works. I used an off-the-shelf stretched canvas (they are super cheap nowadays) though I did add the frame myself. Not sure if I will include the framing in the painting tutorial or a subsequent one. I’ll see how I’m going for time :-)

  42. Martha says:

    Painting tutorial? Yes please!!!

  43. Nikki Adams says:

    Hi Kristine! The lamps look gorgeous! The abstract painting and the lamps complemented each other. I just wish I have that same artistic mind as you do. Your idea truly inspired me. Now I’m thinking of redoing my study area, but I would need to organise everything first as I have so much mess lying around. I’ll contact my trusted home cleaners right away to help clean the room, so it will be easier to move everything around.

    Thanks for your sharing!

  44. Kristine, I love this vignette and I adore your writing style. I found your site by googling diy abstract art. I’ve painted a bit, off and on, for years but I’m not that great with abstracts. I find modern art to be much more difficult than “impressionist” style artworks even though I grew up around abstract art. I am definitely going to try your acrylic and dye technique. One question, we don’t have superamart (or whatever place you got your clear glass lamps) in the states…so can you tell us the approximate dimensions of those gorgeous lamps? I”m in my 60s (bummer) and I’m still a klutz when it comes to decorating. Hope spell check hasn’t botched this comment alltohellandback! I’m on a phone and its hard for me to type this…even after admitting to using made up words. Love your style even though I will probably end up with something more tasteless (on purpose) and flamboyant. I like the blue with the artwork. The stripes in the lumbar pillow are perfect and ground the look. And…now I’m off to see what else you’ve written. Hope this is coherent as I’m typing somewhat blindly.

    • Hi Christina
      Thanks so much for your comments :)
      It took me a few attempts to get the look I wanted though the great thing about paint is that you can always paint over it again!
      Here is a link to the lamps which contains all the product details:
      I’m not sure if they would go by the same name (Verre Table Lamp) in the States, though these are simply imported (probably from Asia) so you might be able to find the same ones if you have a Google around.
      Let me know how you go with everything :)

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