Statement decor Ideas which can Spark a Conversation with Your Guest!
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While weather has been a perennial conversation starter, with changing times creative interior décor items are playing a pivotal role in breaking the ice between guests and hosts.
“I strike up conversations all the time and it is very interesting, finding out about things I know nothing about.” – Peter Ackroyd
Well not all of us can have the gift of the gab like Peter especially when it comes to people whom we are meeting for the first time. At such times instead of thawing the ice with a boring topic like the weather or politics or the global pandemic; it’s more comfortable to talk about an interior décor item, isn’t it? While the guest appreciates it and gives the host a feel-good factor; the latter can share the story behind the conversation starting décor item i.e. where did he pick it up from; how much effort did it require; what’s so special about it; et al. But good manners demand that one doesn’t harp on the cost of the item as it rings in an element of crassness!
Meaning of a Conversation Pieces
Anything – furniture, tapestry, artefact et al – which becomes the topic of a conversation between you & your guests simply by virtue of its being unique and eye-catchy, can be termed a conversation piece.
Often all it takes is one conversation starter – say a dark walnut armchair or a multi-purpose coffee table – to take things to a subjective space. Because for a large majority of us our house reflects our character – even if we commission the designing to a professional interior designer yet the final selection of the design and even the items which form part of the interior design rests with us.
Benefits of a Conversation Pieces in Home Decor
A conversation piece not only helps the guest and the host to set the ball rolling but many a times when tastes match they also create a lifetime connect!
Other benefits of a conversation piece include – making a room interesting; attracting attention; initiating talk; adding a personal element to the room.
How Should these Conversation Pieces Be?
Unlike popular belief, Gharpedia does not moot for expensive and extraordinary conversation pieces. The ‘wow factor’ can be created without spending the moon as conversation pieces or focal points can be unique and attractive even if they are simple.
One just needs to give a free rein to one’s imagination and add a personal touch to get the guests notice even an ordinary piece of décor; it could be something as basic as an unusually shaped or designed flower vase or a quirky painting or a stuffed ottoman or even something as elementary as a cardboard artefact jutting out of the wall.
The underlying objective here is to add an element of surprise…something which will make people stop, sit up and take notice. Jig your imagination a bit … what memory stays with you from the houses you visited besides of course the warm hospitality – the lamp shaped in the form of a rabbit; or the chandelier made from recycled wine bottles; or even the rocking chair in which your host’s father had comfortably ensconced himself; or the brass swing with parrots and peacocks entwined in its chain…the list is endless.
Where Can Conversation Pieces Be Kept?
Well the sky is the limit. In the by-gone era conversation pieces or focal points were strictly restricted to living rooms. But with changing times practically each room of the house including the outside space can have a conversation piece.
Houses offer options galore like – an ethnic jhula for the living room; a dolphin-shaped fountain in the garden; electric lanterns on the gate poles; earthen wind chimes in the patio; a unique stool at the kitchen island or even a spoon stand shaped like a clown in the kitchen; an outstanding piece of crockery or cutlery in the dining room; dream catchers in the bedroom or even a hand-woven quilt; a collapsible table in the study room; a handcrafted idol or temple in the puja room; a Patara (treasury chest type box) in the storeroom; a uniquely designed mirror closet or faucet in the bathroom.
One basically needs to create a personal style statement while incorporating conversation pieces into a place.
Where to Shop for Conversation Starting Home Decor?
- For the DIY segment the blend of their creative visualization and efficient hands can help weave magic and create conversation pieces from mundane items.
- For those who don’t fall under this blessed segment they can scour neighbourhood antique stores or hidden old shops or flea markets for these pieces.
- Travel buffs can pick up local ethnic artefacts from their trips.
- Leaving a word around in your group – social media and otherwise – also eases the search for unique conversation pieces.
Innovative and Off-Beat Conversation Starting Décor Ideas
- One of the most economic and easy way of making a conversation piece is adding dollops of colour, in places where people are not expecting them – but do this creatively and cautiously please…without ruining your wall!
- A waterfall – where recycled water continuously runs is quite a soothing sight besides starting a conversation.
- One more thing that demands attention is big size. Anything over sized- like hanged on wall i.e. large letters on a wall.
- Family photos are the great memory. Displaying photos of your ancestors on wall allows you to celebrate the origin of your family’s roots, which instills pride and creates self-esteem. Family photos help remind the children of their ancestors. After seeing photographs the guests who haven’t seen your family members can inquire about them.
- Your achievements are presented by prizes and trophies. If you showcase them in living room, they can be a conversation starter when you are expecting guest.
- The living room decor is the first thing your guests notice when they enter your home. So, you can beautify your living room with the huge decorative items.
- It is believed that, if you put a dream catcher over a bed it will capture the bad dreams in the web while releasing the positive dreams into the middle through the hole. When the rays of the dawn touch the morning dream catcher all the bad dreams will evaporate. Colourful dream catchers will certainly attract the guest’s interest.
- Wind chimes help to attract wealth, good fortune, positive energy and suppress negative. Adding unique and colourful wind chime in your living room can be the start of discussion.
- Due to their sophisticated unique style French windows look great. They are so much more energy-efficient and thus could be an object of the attention of your guest.
- Piano may also be the initiator of a discussion. The standard colours of a piano are black, brown and white. If you have a black piano, try to add light colours to the decor in your house. You should paint the walls white and install curtains and seats green or natural-tone. Your black piano will stand out when contrasting with bright colours and the room will look larger as well.
- If you are looking for something special for your home which can be a conversation starter then, a family tree is the great idea.
- Fresh flowers especially if they’re off-season and exotic are sure to attract the attention of your guests and also push them to make comments like – any special occasion; where did you get them from; their favourite flower from the posy et al.
- Candles offering a plethora of colours, scents, and candle holders, when placed in an assortment of shapes and sizes, appear upbeat and modern.
- Wall art form phenomenal conversation pieces, be it modern art such as Warhol or classic like Van Gogh, they unfailingly liven up any room. For those gifted with a penchant for painting displaying their creative pieces is a definite conversation striker!
- Adding the traditional plant like Bonsai in your home can enhance the beauty of the room. It will establish an accent feature for your living room, which can be a cause for your guest to speak to.
- Bringing out some unique dinnerware while entertaining guests is also sure to create a culinary connect! Ideas here could vary from – opting for leaves while serving a South Indian dinner; earthenware for Gujarati Undhiyu; a tea cosy set…go ahead and explore some more cuisine related dinnerware!
Guests at our house should enjoy themselves as well as be impressed with our taste…but there’s a thin line between ‘impressed’ and ‘awestruck’ and hosts need to ensure that in their zeal for impressing the guest they don’t touch on taboo topics like costing and humming on the humungous pains they took to pick up or create the conversation starter piece as this smacks of arrogance which ends up defeating the very purpose of a conversation piece as it puts off the guest completely!
In case a guest really loves a conversation starting décor piece and if you have a couple of them or if picking them up or creating them is not a challenge then taking one along with you to gift to your guest when you visit their house is a thoughtful idea.
To wind up, the Indian mindset of ‘Atithi Devo Bhavah’ ensures that guests are made to feel comfortable and at home. Hence conversation lulls and embarrassing silences can be avoided by bringing in the story behind a conversation piece.
You can have some more ideas of conversation piece home decor from below listed articles.
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An English Literature and Journalism Topper, Huta Raval has graduated from the L D Arts College, Ahmedabad. Post serving for 23 years in the NBFC and Public Library Sectors her desire for ‘writing the unwritten’ brought her to the creative field of content writing. Her clientele comprises of NGOs, Blogging Platforms, Newspapers, Academic Institutions, et al.