Veranda - Designer: George Cameron Nash
In this room in Veranda Magazine designed by George Cameron Nash in a Dallas apartment, the collections on an open set of shelves adds interest and color.
Homes and Gardens, UK
In this photo from the UK magazine Homes and Gardens the wall decoration is made up of Victorian breadboards. Collections need not be expensive to have an impact. In this case it's a matter of having enough of them to make the statement. You wouldn't want just one or two. Plates are a a very good way of adding display at low cost (unless you want to make the investment in something more special).
Homes and Gardens, UK
In this example there is a simple mix of white china and sea side finds to make the display.
Collections make a home look lived in. If you've just redecorated or moved into a new place, it makes the place feel more like a home.
Collecting can be a job in itself if you are building it piece by piece, which can be lots of fun. But to get a head start, try finding high and low collections at auctions. Here are some finds at upcoming auctions I follow.
Christie's Interiors Sale, NY - July 22 & 23 - Lot 178
These match strikers are incredibly decorative. Great color, varying sizes, and there are 13 of them! They'd look great on a shelf or table top. They are included in the Christie's Interiors Sale of July 22 & 23. They are glass and silver and were made between 1898 and 1909. They have an estimate of $2,000 to $3,000.
Christie's Interiors Sale - Lot 240
Another lot in the Christie's sale are these 6 Czech glass vases. Great color and interesting designs. They are 20th century and have an estimate of $600 - $800.
Stair Galleries Sale July 24th - Lot 36
Stair Galleries in Hudson, NY has an upcoming auction that includes pieces from the Millbrook home of Lawrence Salander (convicted of fraud and ordered to dispose property). Lot 36 are these very interesting plates described as Hispano-Moresque copper lustre charges (15.5" diameter) with an estimate of $500 - $700. Very smart looking.
I love these American wooden game boards (approx. 23") as a collection that are coming up in the Copake Auction of July 24th in Copake, NY. They are Lots 539 and 540 and have an estimate of $40 - $60 and $50 - $75 respectively. I'd buy both lots (and there are 2 more in another lot). They would add interest and color on a wall. The can look very modern and graphic.
Finally if you want to have some fun, try gnomes!
Stair Galleries July 24th - Lot 470
These cast stone garden gnomes make me giggle, and could just be the thing to lighten up a room. They stand 14.5" tall and have an estimate of $50 - $100.
Auctions are loaded with instant collections, and you just need to keep an eye out. Also, you can add lots of interest very inexpensively if you keep your mind open to objects that make a statement as a large group that may not do it alone.