10 Ways To Transform a Room With A Single Painting!

I love reading your comments - it adds so much to the post and more often than not someone will point out something I haven't noticed and I'll look a the home tour from a new perspective. Yesterday,  for example, someone pointed out that there was no art on the walls - and it was in no means meant as a negative - more an observation that a home without art can also be interesting.  So today, I thought I would go to the opposite extreme and take a look at how a single painting can transform a space. When I was writing my first book, Modern Pastoral, the photographer James Gardiner and I captured a beautiful home in the Hudson Valley designed by Jersey Ice-cream Company. One of the things I noticed about the work of Tara Mangini & Percy Bright is how they apply art (mainly portraits, but also landscapes and still life) to bring the look together. Here are ten fine examples:

I found this fascinating, how about you?

Did you have a favourite?

It has totally spurred me on to look out for more original art for my walls. These are often good sources: 

Flea markets
Charity shops

Do you have any other suggestions on where to source original portrait paintings? Perhaps some wonderful, modern artists?

I'm going to need to be careful though - there was a painting in my childhood home of my great, great, great grandfather who was an Admiral. My Mother used to have to cover it up with a sheet at night because my sisters and I were so afraid of it! There was something about the way his eyes followed you around the room. Did you have any paintings like that in your home? 


Photography courtesy of Jersey Ice-cream Company  / some credited to Beth Kirby
Affiliate links marked with *


  1. Do you know the wallpaper source in the first photo? So pretty!

    1. I love it too - it's by Farrow & Ball :)

  2. Thank you Niki!

  3. This is brilliant. One of my favorite posts. The beauty of simplicity and doesn't look contrived.

  4. The wallpaper in the first photo is gorgeous; and it goes so well with the rustic beams.

  5. I don't have a portrait painting but I do have a painting that I bought at an antique fair. It shows a man wearing a fez and ethnic clothes who pulls a rope with a young black bull on its other end. It immediately 'talked to me' and I was convinced that the man drags the animal to a slaughterhouse; and if I buy the painting I will save the animal's life.
    (I guess it's a proof if I really want something I invent a convincing reason why I have to buy it).

  6. My walls are bare apart from one old painting I was given by my father. It's an oil painting done by my great great uncle of a mill in Scotland. It's in an elaborate gilt frame in an otherwise modern but slightly vintage style flat. I can't add a photo of it here it seems, otherwise I would have done.


Post a Comment

Privacy Notice: We do not share personal information with third-parties nor do we store information we collect about your visit to this blog for use other than to analyze content performance through the use of cookies, which you can turn off at anytime by modifying your Internet browser's settings. We are not responsible for the republishing of the content found on this blog on other Web sites or media without our permission. This privacy policy is subject to change without notice.

Subscribe To My Scandinavian Home

Subscribe to My Scandinavian Home

skovby ad


site by ANAAR

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website.