Abandoned beauty: bring love into your home with natures leftovers and second-hand treasures

Text and styling Tara Sloggett
Photographs Warren Heath, Bureaux

Never has there been a time where we spend so much time at home and appreciate the nature around us. Combine the two, and you have something exceptional. Bring the rawness and innocence of nature into your home with delicate dried specimens, pods, flowers and grasses and fulfil your soul by choosing to re-love furniture cast aside by others.

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There’s nothing quite as satisfying as creating something beautiful that costs virtually nothing. Grasses and dried bushes, fallen pine cones or twigs picked up whilst on a walk on the common can be transformed with little know-how. You can even extend the life of your shop-bought flowers by using dried hydrangeas and eucalyptus.

Foraged finds with texture and detail, sometimes that’s all you need.

Always be conscious of where you’re foraging. Only forage where there is plenty of everything, and if in doubt, just ask if it’s okay, you’ll find most people only too happy to share. Always have a pair of good secateurs with you.

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With such beauty and form in the most simplest and subtle of ways, single stems, especially if displayed together can look elegantly striking. Think about creating different heights and textures with a subtle underlying unison.

The secret to keeping them standing upright is to use a flower frog, a tiny weighted surface of spikes that secures stems in place. For dried flowers just push it into place, and you have an instant display, and if you prefer a more finished look, you can disguise it by placing it in a pretty dish. For fresh flowers, just add water.

Hanging installations are very much on-trend and although they look too tricky to handle, they’re actually very simple. Create a basic structure by making a hollow sausage shape out of chicken wire and secure the shape with the wire itself or with cable ties, you’ll need some wire cutters for this. This creates a ‘housing’ to poke your dried pieces through. It’s easier to create your floral piece whilst it’s hanging, so tie fishing gut on each end to hang, (the fishing gut will make it look like it’s floating in the air). Then start feeding through your dried flowers. Favourites are often dried hydrangeas, grasses and dried eucalyptus. Poke them through, taking time to build up layers and once you’re happy, tidy up the ends by cutting with secateurs. Fill in any gaps with additional dried pieces or flower heads and secure any stems with clear cable ties or twine if needed. If your piece is only seen front on you won’t need to worry about the back, but if you can walk around it, then make sure it looks fabulous all the way round.

A wreath isn’t just for Christmas, adorn your walls all year, inside and out. Create your own base with twigs or add foraged finds to a shop-bought ring.

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Neutrals work all year round, but a splash of blue and mustard can really bring a rich, inviting cosy feel just in time for Autumn.

Combine key pieces in warm woods and bamboo. With soft linen furnishings and a vintage print, you’ll have achieved modern country living at its finest.

Just one huge dried piece in a vase is so simple but creates a huge impact.

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Mix blue tableware with mustard pops, and cutlery in a mix of woods with just a touch of gold.

A single stem makes an elegant place setting, and twigs displayed with your guest’s initial adds a fun personal touch.

Take your style outdoors. An old factory bench, relaxed washed out cushions, dried tumbleweeds and the best yet, bamboo hula-hoops, all make for the perfect Autumn décor.

Natural Home Decor Bureaux