This lovely, sunny reading room is for a client in Leawood and is fitted with an abundance of shelving to hold favorite books, family pictures and beloved mementos but in an organized yet beautiful way!

The Tran + Thomas process

Tran + Thomas has a process that we follow to assist clients with their accessories.  Whether we have designed a new build, a renovation or a facelift of a few rooms, organizing and displaying accessories are an important part of well designed space.  

Whether you are fully renovating a room or just want to give your accessories a boost over the weekend, the following is a wonderful way to repurpose your accessories.

  • Bring all of your home’s accessories and lamps to temporary tables in a common space like a garage, basement or guest room.  
  • Sort all accessories by height.  Doing so brings a fresh eye and new perspective to all of the items you already own.  They look very different all lined up together!
  • Organize all like things together to identify any collections.  If you don’t have items that fall into the same category (ie, pottery, clocks, etc) you can use color or finish as your category.
  • “Shop” from this group and re-accessorize your spaces.  Using the best of the best and cull outdated items. Wash and clean items as you go so all look their best.

When creating a display, your objects, lamps, and art should have different heights, textures and colors that balance each other to create a interesting composition for your eyes to explore!

  • Groups of odd numbers and/or symmetric groupings work best for displays.
  • Heights should be stair stepping…high, medium and lower

Simplicity is always stunning. The more space a display has the richer the objects appear. This display focuses on symmetry…we found our “ohm” moment!

  • Be careful not to over accessorize…remember less is more, and has a richer look.
  • Left over items can be given or packed away to remove any clutter

Long and low is the ideal size for this table-scape. The mix of succulents, retro candle sticks, and center white sparkly tree create a non-traditional take on Christmas for this Leawood client.

More Useful Tips…

  • Does your room have shelves or a bookcase? By adjusting shelves and/or removing them you can create new configurations to accommodate your newly organized accessories
  • Books are a useful accessory that can enhance your displays.  Use them in a stack, as bookends or use book stacks of different heights to display small pictures, objects, keepsakes.

Young and fresh in coloring…this modern, cheery space utilizes stacked books on the cocktail table to create a peek into the owners interests without creating clutter.

  • Try changing displays from symmetrical to asymmetrical or asymmetrical to symmetrical.  Symmetrical organization usually has a more traditional or classic feel, while asymmetrical displays can feel a bit more modern and the most successful will have a very balanced feel.

The books, sculptures and object d’art in this room are carefully curated and displayed in the room rather than tucked into a glass fronted cabinet. This allows guests to really get into the spirit of the room and is a more informal way of displaying loved mementos.

  • Consider bringing items behind glass out in the open.  By bringing items out of glass fronted cabinets you allow them to be enjoyed and interactive with the space.
  • Use hidden beautiful or unique drinking glasses to hold cotton swabs or makeup brushes or on a desk for pens and pencils.
  • Bring in pretty bowls and glasses to hold small items on your nightstand, desk, coffee table or makeup area.

Nightstands can be catchalls. Use decorative bowls, vases and boxes to corral all the extra things that accumulate and make them look pretty!

  • Use decorative containers in the kitchen or laundry room hold rags, laundry pods, stain sticks and miscellaneous clutter.  Amazing how clutter & less attractive items look less utilitarian when corralled into a pretty container.
  • Take items out of their original containers (boxes & plastic bags) and put them in lovely jars with lids, boxes with labels or baskets with tags.
  • Regroup like items:  family photos, small mirrors, postcards, love letters to create a more meaningful grouping.
  • Utilize shadow boxes for small collections like letters, or postcards, wine corks, bottle caps, matchbooks, or pebbles.
  • Adding lamps or additional lighting will always give a space a facelift.  Also, change out shades for existing lamps to give lamps a new lease on life.  New shades can be like a new lipstick to create a new mood – try a different size or customize with a fun fabric or cool trim.

These tips and tricks are just the beginning of revising your space.  By reusing what you have and looking at your accessories in new ways can really create an amazing and visually organized space without an enormous renovation.  And with a renovation or new build, reorganizing what you already have adds the households personality in a focused and organized way!

Good Luck and Happy Spring!!!

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Approaching 40 years in the business of Interior Design
Originally founded in 1982, family-owned Tran + Thomas Design Studio has emerged as a top leader in Interior Architecture, Interior Design, and Product Selection. Our team brings extraordinary beauty and luxury to homes, offices and other commercial properties in the Kansas City area and beyond. There are no tired formulas or leftover recipes used in our work, but rather an approach that starts with heightened imagination and a practiced design philosophy and ends with happy clients residing in a beautiful space. For over a quarter century we have turned dreams into reality by first imagining the ultimate interior and then determining how to achieve that interior.

Building new homes and commercial properties, remodeling, finding the perfect furnishings…
We are well versed working with architects and builders: constructing new homes, remodeling tired (outdated) spaces, and redesigning/refreshing one room or an entire house. Our breathtaking Interior Design is famous for being a reflection of the uniquely different styles of our clients personalities.  Jill and Carmen have extensive experience designing traditional, transitional, and modern homes to dental offices, sports arenas, restaurants, retail and other commercial spaces!

A wonderful and better source for furnishings
Jill Tran and Carmen Thomas have, and continue to, research, gather and curate wonderful resources for the homes and businesses of their clients.  When working with us, clients gain access to 250+ fabulous designer lines which include upholstered furnishings (sofas, chairs, beds), casegoods (tables, cabinets and furniture without upholstery), lighting (table lamps, sconces and chandeliers), fabrics (for upholstery, pillows and drapery), custom drapes, rugs, antiques of all kinds, bedding, artwork, and more.  Our clients also have access to specialized craftsmen, artists, and suppliers to create that one of kind space that is unique to them

Why Tran + Thomas?
The choice of whom you work with on your home or office is absolutely everything.  Knowledge of what is available, creativity, organization, dependability, trust, sources, contacts, education, respect, personality and the ability to interpret and bring to life your needs only comes from one place…experience.  Tran + Thomas has that in spades!

We hope you will consider Tran + Thomas for your next design project!

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