Blog Description

A French-Inspired Garden and Home by Judith Stringham

Vignette Design Series #5~Create

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Have you ever wondered
how stylists create their beautiful 

Welcome to #5
"bring something into existence"
 in a
Now that we have seen four elements
of a vignette....

How do we improve
 our vignettes?
How do we create?
 Yes, we have homework.

(1) Analyze
 Look for themes in
 vignettes that capture your attention. 
Identify the element(s) that define 
the theme the strongest. 
Determine any elements that are subtle. 
The more you analyze,
 the more ideas come to mind for your vignettes.

(2) Organize
 Gather like-themed objects as you find them at home.
 Place in a basket, on a shelf, or in a large shopping bag, 
anyplace where you can find them, and
 continue to add to the items until you are ready to create the vignette.
 Collecting may take a day or two, or
 it may take place over several days
 if you want to make some items.
  In the planning stages...a Paris tablescape...

I may or may not use these items, but
 I know where to find them if I do.
 What have I gathered so far?

 Two iron Eiffel Towers, Eiffel Tower gift card,
 Paris subway maps, Opéra napkins, grey ceramic heart with raised design...

(3) Practice
 Copy a Pottery Barn vignette 
placement with your items.
 Arrange, photograph. 
Re-arrange, photo again. 
Repeat until satisfied. 
(Don't you just love digital cameras?
 No film, no processing, instant viewing; 
don't like a photo, delete, and reshoot!)

(4) Shop with purpose
 Keep a list of themes that you want to develop in your purse.
 Don't shop for specific items. 
Instead, keep your eyes open to things that
 go with what you already have.
 If you shop for a specific item,
 you may never find it, but
 if you shop for a theme,
 you will find things that work.

(5) Diversify
 (A) Collect items from different eras.
 This website has copyright free old maps.

 (B) Mix paper with other textures.
 Cards (1) & (3) with plants  ~~~  Paper (2) & (4) with china plates

 (C) Use a variety of ways to create height.
 Remember height helps create movement 
needed for good composition.
 (1) Objects' heights  (2) Stack of books  (3) Easels
(4) Boxes  (5) & (6) Cake plates 

(6) Use meaningful objects
 Include items you found on vacation,
 had as a child,
 or inherited from your husband's family, etc...
 The patina of older objects adds visual depth.
 Treasured objects add emotional depth,
 rich with connections.

 So, that's what I've noticed about vignettes that
 "speak to me" and about how to put into practice what I've seen.

 Is there something you've noticed?
 If you have any useful tips to add,
 please write a comment for us all to see.

Show Us The Vignette!
 Say this in your best Cuba Gooding voice.
 Write a comment on this post and include a
 link back to your blog site
  that has your vignette in it.
 I don't host a linky party, :(
 but would love to see what your 
 vignettes look like.


  1. Judith, this has been an excellent series. I find myself creating vignettes about our home frequently. It amuses me! I like to use holiday items to create small vignettes about the house to give a touch of the holiday, and I use pieces from my collections to create themed vignettes. I recently rearranged all my French faience using a theme approach, mixing in other items such as pewter or copper. Here is a link to my recent post that features some vignettes for 4th of July.
    Thanks again for this excellent look at creating vignettes. ~ Sarah

  2. I am not particularly good at vignettes but you have inspired me. Your comment about patina is so spot on. Sometimes I am attracted as much to patina as I am to the object. One of the reasons your vignettes are so lovely is that you begin with lovely things :) Thanks for the instruction!

  3. Love the assignment! Today I'm marking a quilt and, hopefully, will get to the quilting part, but I'll be thinking. I have the perfect basket in which to collect the items. Thank you for the inspiration!

  4. Judith! I love your blog banner!
    I have been following, but just now catching up with my comments.
    Your gathering basket, holding such wonderful goodness, is also a lovely vignette!
    Thank you for taking the time to put together this wonderful series!

  5. This series has been very helpful. I can always come up with a theme for my vignettes, but sometimes displaying them the way I want can be a challenge. Thanks for sharing!

  6. Thank you for pointing out some of the objectives we should use in our vignettes. Most artist that know me ...Well...Lets just say I do a lot of vignettes. And you hit the nail on the head. You always need a plan. If you don't can get lost. End up buying things you don't need , or forget the things you do need. I just finished my latest vignette,
    and it is posted on my blog.
    Again thank you for all the info. We always could use more help.
    Happy Fourth,
    Marie Antoinette

  7. You did such a good job with this series. I agree to practice! I am doing that always. Thank you for joining Home Sweet Home!


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