What is Eclectic Interior Design?

I feel like I’ve been seeing more and more people using the word “Eclectic” to describe interiors lately- but what exactly does that mean?? Eclectic Interior Design is defined as decor that incorporates a mixture of styles, time periods, and textures. Often, I think people (myself included) confuse eclectic decor and maximalist decor. Whenever I hear the word “eclectic” I used to always think of a room like this:

Rooms that were filled to the brim with stuff, walls with every inch covered in art and other decor. I didn’t think that my style could possibly be considered eclectic. Until more recently I started seeing more and more rooms being described eclectic that actually looked like my style. After some research, I found that eclectic rooms do not have to be busy and colorful (though there’s nothing wrong if that is your style!). If you mix styles of furniture (which a lot of people do) then your style would be considered eclectic! Same with mixing vintage and new pieces. Eclectic style rooms do not just combine any and everything together - they are actually very well thought out and curated.

I found some beautiful examples of Eclectic style rooms, all of which I would LOVE to have in my home!


So how do you get the look?

Honestly, this is something I’m still trying to master! There is a fine line between a beautifully curated looking room and one that looks like a dumping ground for all your leftover furniture! But I do have some pointers that might make things a little easier…

First I’d say to look around your room… do you have a lot of boho elements (wicker, rattan, macrame)? Try either adding in or switching some out for more modern pieces. If you have a more modern style coffee table, try mixing in a coastal style side table. It’s all about finding the right balance of styles, and I definitely think that it’s a skill that you get better at the more you try!

All of the above spaces have neutral walls, which I think lets the different design elements shine. In an eclectic room, your eye needs a place to rest.

When working with furniture and decor from different eras, you can tie them all together by repeating the same color throughout different areas of the room. Same with textures like wicker. For example: I’m currently making over my dining room, and I’ve added hints of gold/brass in a few different areas.

I hope these tips are helpful! It might take a few different arrangements to get the look you’re going for; but the more you practice, the easier it will become!