The Unexpected: Surprising Touches of Decor

Have you ever been visiting a friend or family member's house—or a hotel or bed and breakfast—and stumbled across some little design element that surprised you? Sometimes, that little moment of surprise endears us to the space. You can achieve the same thing in your house by adding surprises in your designs.

Like the unexpected? These ideas are for you!


Neon tends to go in and out of favor, but lately it's been getting some use in home décor. Neon colors are definitely eye-catching, young, and fresh, but there are some tricks to using it well:

  • If you're going to use a lot of the neon, start in a neutral room. The color will pop without being overwhelming.
  • Play off the neons with darker complementary colors.
  • Be deliberate in your neon choices so that they're subtle but influential—even if people don't recognize it. Now that's hiding in plain sight!
  • For more ideas about decorating with neon, check out Bright Nest.

"Hidden” Design

It might seem like a waste of time to decorate things that are mostly out of the way, but doing so will keep an air of delight in your home—isn't that what you want? Try these:

  • Put wallpaper on the inside back of bookshelves.
  • Change drawer pulls in the kitchen or bathroom for something you like, even if it's whimsical.
  • Serve dinner on plates or cups with interesting designs!

Play With the Light

Light is a great way to change a space and can even change the whole mood of a room. Take a look at your windows and light fixtures. How often does light enter the house? Where do you see it coming in? Play your curtains and blinds around this light to bring in as much as possible.

Place some mirrors around the house, but don't just use them to look nice! Spread the mirrors out in the house to keep light reflecting.