Whimsical Decor: Adding a Dash of Whimsy to Your Home

Whimsical decor is not your average design style. This quaint and charming style has a playful quality to it, with delightful decor that makes you smile! Many whimsical spaces feel imaginative and youthful—whimsy at its very finest. And it’s one of those trending decor ideas that we’re anticipating will grow in popularity in the next year.

Is whimsical style a look you’re going for? We’re answering the top questions about whimsical decor and rounding up our favorite whimsical furniture and decor that you can shop!

What is whimsical decor?

Whimsical decor actually isn’t any one design style. Rather, it encompasses decor that is lighthearted, playful, and full of color and pattern. Creating a very charming look, it’s often associated with fairytales, as animals and woodland creatures are prominent motifs in whimsical decor. (In fact, you can see a lot of whimsical decor elements in our Disney Princess home designs!)

Whimsical decor often features carved elements or hand-painted finishes, which give furniture and decor a unique look. You’ll find ornate details, softer color palettes, and plenty of patterns in whimsical spaces. Overall, whimsical decor is playful and charming, with elements of amusement and curiosity that evoke a sense of delight.

Which interior design styles have whimsical elements?

Whimsical decor can be incorporated into just about any design scheme—whether through a small piece of art or a sculptural object, or in larger ways through statement furniture and light fixtures.

Whimsical decor is most often found in kid’s rooms, and is a great style for little ones who love animals, nature, or fairy tales! However, there are most certainly ways to give whimsical decor a more grown-up and mature spin.

In fact, there are a few specific styles that are more closely associated with whimsy, so if you’re looking to create a whimsical look, these are good styles to consider. Eclectic and bohemian styles are playful by nature—and as more relaxed styles, they naturally align with whimsical elements. Rustic and farmhouse styles also lend themselves quite well to whimsical decor, which often has a vintage feel. Specifically, shabby chic and cottagecore styles, with their rural, countryside inspiration, are great styles to embrace if you want to tap into a more whimsical look!

A whimsical nursery filled with eclectic decor

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Where can I shop for whimsical furniture and decor?

You might be able to recognize whimsical decor when you see it—but where exactly can you shop for it? After all, not all brands offer whimsical decor, since it’s a more specialized decor style.

Your best bet for finding unique pieces of whimsical decor are flea markets, vintage stores, and antique shops. Vintage and antique furniture and decor tend to be more ornate, which fits in well with a whimsical vibe. However, there are also a few retailers and Modsy-curated brands that are great places to shop whimsical decor! Anthropologie, Pottery Barn Kids, Rifle Paper Co., Precita Home, and Antique Curiosities all have amazing whimsical pieces. Serena & Lily also has some good options if you want your whimsical space to lean a bit more formal.

​​How to Create a Whimsical Look

Want to bring some whimsical decor into your home’s design? Scroll down for 9 tips on adding a dash of whimsy to your home!

Whimsical wallpaper and and an ornate cabinet make this entryway charming

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1. Incorporate Nature-Inspired Motifs

Prints, patterns, and sculptural elements involving trees, plants, and florals are all part of a whimsical space. Look for furniture and decor that incorporates nature into its form, like this tree wallpaper or a lamp with a base that’s shaped like a tree. Even the carved armoire, above, features a pattern that’s reminiscent of vines and flowers—quite a charming piece!

2. Add Animal Forms

Animal forms are often seen as youthful and unrefined—which makes them a great choice for a whimsical space. So, bring animal elements into your space—whether it’s a sculptural animal head hanging on the wall, framed animal art, or animals in playful settings, like as the base of a table or lamp! This is a great way to try out the animal art trend!

A moody maroon living room with ornate and whimsical accent furniture

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3. Use Carved Wood Furniture

Carved wood elements add an intricate touch to your space. Carved furniture tends to be more classic or traditional in style which can help ground your space in a more timeless look. But interesting carvings, like the deer armchairs pictured above, have both an intricate and totally whimsical look!

4. Layer in Vintage Decor

Vintage items like fine China, figurines, and other delicate antiques can add a sense of whimsy to your space. We love the look of a “gallery wall” full of mismatched vintage floral plates hung on the wall, a stack of antique books, or a vintage woven tapestry.

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5. Look for Playful Forms

Unexpected furniture shapes bring a whimsical element to a space. The curved, rounded arms on these sofas are a great example, as are the two lamps in this space with their unique forms! They can add a lighthearted touch to a more serious space.

whimsical wallpaper adds charming character to this bedroom

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6. Incorporate Plenty of Patterns

Patterns in upholstery and rugs are a big part of whimsical decor. Floral patterns are a perfect choice, but other nature-inspired patterns (like the cloud wallpaper, above) add the perfect touch to a whimsical space. Many vintage-inspired rugs have a floral or folk-inspired patterning and are colorful, which adds a bit of playfulness to a room.

7. Embrace Natural Materials

Natural materials—like jute, rattan, wicker, and seagrass—are a great way to add a bit of an eclectic and layered touch to your space. Bonus points if these pieces also have poms or tassels as added ornament!

Small details in this blue bedroom are whimsical and fun

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8. Add Delicate Details

Whimsical spaces tend to lean more feminine, so having furniture and decor with soft details is an important aspect to creating a whimsical design. We love sweet details like scalloped edges, Jenny Lind-style beds, bedroom canopies, and florals.

9. Get a Little Quirky

Whimsical design shouldn’t feel serious or stuffy. Instead, it should evoke a lighthearted playfulness that has a touch of the eclectic. So, embrace quirky accents to bring a bit of extra playfulness to your room’s design!

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Designer Picks: Shop Our Favorite Whimsical Decor

Ready to shop for some whimsical decor and furniture pieces? Here are our designers’ top picks from the Modsy catalog.

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These Cozy Home Offices Are Ready For Your Winter ‘Work From Home’ Days

cozy home office ideasWinter is just around the corner. And for many of us that means there are also plenty of snow days on the horizon! If that sounds familiar to you, then you’re probably gearing up your home office for some WFH days. And if you’re in a snow-free zone, you’re likely still finding yourself working from home a tad more during this busy time of year.

Either way, working from home can be a challenge, regardless of the season, if your home office isn’t set up to inspire you to do your best work. Make the days cooped up more productive with a home office you love spending time in. Keeping the coming winter months in mind, cozying up your home (and office) is essential. To inspire and help you with an instant winter update, here are three home office ideas for a cozy and productive workspace.

chic home office ideasHome Office Idea #1: The Chic Retreat

Traditional with a touch of glam, this office is equal parts practical and inspiring. The dark walls give it a moody vibe, while the crisp notes of white help to brighten it up. To offset the high-contrast palette, a traditional warm-hued rug provides a colorful counterpoint and adds to the cozy atmosphere. HEre’s how to get the look of this chic home office idea.

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chic home office ideasThe Essentials:

Dark walls. Be it black, slate grey, or charcoal, dark-painted walls in the home office are far from oppressive. They can add a sophisticated and cozy vibe and amplify natural light streaming into the room.

Tailored designs. Think beyond style and focus on mixing in furniture and accents with bold clean lines. Here, the clean-lined desk and chair and minimal light fixtures with an industrial-chic vibe do it just right.

A luxurious patterned rug. Pick one with a warm palette for a foundation that cozies up the room from the ground up with color and contrast.

Gold and Lucite accents. Accents in these materials will elevate and bring an inspiring, luxe touch to an otherwise practical workspace.

Light fabrics. The best way to offset a dark room is to bring in furnishings in light fabrics, so whether it’s a white office chair, a soft throw, or black-and-white photos, add them into your home office decor. It will open up the room that much more.

This is great if you want…

A cozy home office that feels like a library and den. Everything is stylishly streamlined to help you focus but it’s also visually soothing when you need a quick work break.

cozy home office ideasHome Office Idea #2: The Hygge Hideaway

Inspired by the Scandinavian winter tradition of hygge, which embraces the beauty of coziness and pared-down simplicity, this home office idea combines warmth and minimal designs with lots of cozy layers and textures.

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cozy home office ideasThe Essentials:

Crisp, white walls. Lighten and brighten is a common theme in hygge, so interiors that capture this notion often have airy white walls. Start here as the foundation for your home office cocoon!

Minimalist designs. From white furniture to midcentury-style pieces, stay true to the theme with Scandinavian-inspired furnishings. Look for slender forms and open bases, which will further add to the overall minimalist vibe.

Warm neutrals and light wood. To keep the white walls from appearing too stark, mix in accents and touches of warm neutrals, such as a beige rug and a foggy-gray sheepskin, which make for cozy foundations. You’ll also want to keep to raw and light-hued woods when it comes to furnishings, which will pair perfectly with the white walls.

Natural textures. In line with hygge’s appreciation for all things nature, accents in natural materials are a definite must. Think woven baskets and rope planters and raw wood picture frames, all of which provide a sense of warm comfort.

Plenty of plants. You can’t have a space that embraces hygge fully without some vibrant greenery and plants! It’ll bring a lively atmosphere to your workspace.

This is great if you want…

A calming workspace that feels like an escape from the rest of your home. Here, it’s all about an uncluttered home office that inspires clear thinking, productive work, and creative ideas.

eclectic home office ideasIdea #3: The Eclectic Escape

Modern and eclectic, this home office space puts inspiration first and is all about letting your creativity and personality come out. It’s fun, it’s artsy, and it’s got a little edge. If you’re more productive when you have lots of things going on at once, this home office approach is all about keeping you stimulated and busy!

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eclectic home office ideasThe Essentials:

Bold-colored walls. Instead of high-contrast wall colors, like black or white, paint your home office in a color that reflects your personal style and aesthetic. Be it a deep green or a calming blue, it’s about what inspires you or sets your mind at ease when you work.

Modern designs. It’s all about an eclectic furniture mix here, with a combination of modern designs and eclectic accents. Consider pieces that have a mid-century slant, like a bold clean-lined desk and a curvy chair with splayed legs.

Gallery wall. Turn a wall into an inspiration board of your favorite artworks. Mix together prints and paintings you love along with photographs, both professional and personal. Think of this as the main visual showcase of your personality and style.

Earthy materials. Wood, leather, metal, marble… the eclectic home office look here combines a mix of these materials that lend a sumptuous and earthy note. Try mixing them in with small accents made of these materials to start.

Patterns! The eclectic home office all about color and pattern. Don’t be afraid to throw an abstract or geometric rug into the mix. It’ll punch up your gallery wall of eclectic art.

This is great if you want…

A space that shows off your unique personality and is all about the mix. Nothing says cozy like a space that’s personal and feels 100% you, so bring in objects and items that inspire you!

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6 Fall Updates to Instantly Cozy-ify Your Home

cozy decorNow that we’re fully settled into the chillier months, it’s the perfect time to make some cozy fall decor updates that instantly warm up every room in the home. And there’s no need for a complete overhaul. All you need are a few simple refreshes that will get your rooms ready for sweater weather and the colder months to come. Think a nice layering of natural textures, inviting hues, and, of course, a pop of warmth. Read on for our stylish tips for a quick autumn refresh that’s bound to keep you snug all through fall and the winter months.

cozy bedroom decor1. Warm Up With Natural Textures

When it comes to easy cozy decor updates that lend huge comfort to your spaces, natural textures are a no-brainer.

Consider working in rustic woods accents and decor, such as a side table or a pair of chairs, adding a plush wool rug, hanging linen drapers, or even filling a vase with dried pampas grass. These tactile elements have a cozy feel that, when layered all together as in this inviting bedroom, can play up a majorly welcoming vibe.

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cozy office2. Get Bold With Brass Accents

A great way to add warmth is through metallic accents that exude a cozy shine, such as brass and gold accessories.

Consider switching out your vases for ones in brass and gold or adding in a few decorative objects to your table surfaces. Another easy and stylish way to work these warm touches? We love swapping out old hardware for these cozy metals. Whether it’s updating the drawer pulls on a side table or the kitchen cabinets or pulling in an accent chair that has leg caps, these metals will instantly warm up your space.

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cozy decor living room3. Pile on the Luxe Layers

We don’t have to tell you that fall and winter call for lots of layering! The more tactile accents you pile and layer together, the more luxurious and cozy your home will feel. Plus, they’ll give you the perfect place to snuggle on all those fall and winter nights.

Consider layering a sheepskin on top of a warm-hued traditional rug and piling velvet, hide, and furry pillows along with plush throw blankets on your sofa. And speaking of sofa, if you’re ready for a major fall update, a leather sofa will help to play up an extra rustic cabin vibe. Or if your style leans luxe, go for a velvet sofa, which has a way of retaining heat while still giving off a super chic look.

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cozy decor ideas4. Opt for a Warm Palette

When you’re switching up your furnishings and accents, keep the palette in mind. With fall, you can’t go wrong with autumnal hues that naturally play up a super cozy and inviting mood.

Consider mixing reds, oranges, and browns alongside your brass and gold accents for a warm and lavish palette. If you prefer a more soothing, grounded feel for your rooms, go with earth tones that are a warm visual contrast to the crisp coolness of the weather outdoors. It will help make you feel especially snuggly in your home.

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cozy decor5. Add Plush Bedroom Accents

Your bedroom is probably one of the most important spaces to curl up during fall and winter. Make sure your bed is cozy and warm by switching up your bedding for colder weather.

Consider piling on plush pillows and blankets. Sateen sheets can feel luxurious and are incredibly warm, perfect for chilly nights. Meanwhile, a few supremely soft and cloud-like pillows can truly transform your sleep for the better during the seasons.

Beyond the bed, make sure to warm up the rest of your bedroom with equally cozy layers. Add a rug under your bed to make sure you have a warm foundation, pull in pillows and throws for a reading chair, and add a nice brass bedside lamp, all of which will round out your bedroom and make it feel fuller and all the more cozy.

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cozy fall updates6. Create Moody Contrasts

Try a new coat of paint in a darker, moodier hue. A deep color can turn any room into a cozy retreat instantly, whether you paint the whole room or one accent wall.

Consider painting your living spaces a moody gray or charcoal to play up an intimate vibe. It’ll turn these spaces into rooms you’ll want to hibernate in all winter long. Another way to add coziness is to contrast your dark walls with warm woods and brass tones. Not ready for dark walls? Opt for a statement piece in dark wood and mix it with lighter hues for the same effect.

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