"How To Style Your Dresser" Tutorial

Oh, do I feel like I’ve totally neglected this blog. Ugh. This whole new role I have as mom has been 100000% amazing but man, is it a lot of work and trying to juggle my business at the same time is HARD stuff. So yeah, the blog has absolutely taken a backseat but I sure have missed chatting with you here. Fingers crossed I can get better at this blogging thing!

I’ve been working on some really awesome decorating and home organization projects, which I share a whole lot of over on my Instagram, but one project that I recently worked on was what I’m about to share with you today! And that’s my “how to style your dresser” tutorial. SO excited to dive into this with you!

Styling your home is definitely one of those decorating phases that often times can get pushed to wayside. In fact, some client projects that I work on are just styling and accessorizing a room or a bunch of rooms, but most of the time I’ll work on a space from A to Z! Once all of the furnishings and finishes are in, my clients have me make it 100% complete with the final styling phase. Oh, I absolutely love the styling phase. Don’t get me wrong, transforming an entire room or collection of rooms from completely empty to completely furnished is my jam, but there’s always something about styling a space that gets me so very excited. Styling your home is something that can take time and it can leave you really stumped (thus not ever doing it!). However, a styled space is truly what makes a house feel like home. Ya know once it’s styled, it just has that cozy, lived in, polished off feeling that makes you want to curl up on the couch, light a candle and admire all of the prettiness around you…or at least that’s what I like to do in my own home. Hah!

Alright, so in this post I’ve put together two different looks for on top of a dresser. I’m going to walk you through my thought process and some key guidelines that I tend to follow when styling. I hope you enjoy this tutorial and more importantly, find it helpful! Let’s dive in…

choose an anchor

Whether it be a mirror, a piece of framed art or a wall hanging like a Juju Hat, your dresser definitely needs an anchor. This will help ground the vignette as a whole. If you’re hanging a mirror or art piece above your dresser, I would suggest keeping the bottom of the frame/mirror around 5-7” from the top of your dresser. When there is too large of a gap in between the frame/mirror and the dresser, things start to feel disjointed and we don’t want that! Actually, I’m going to suggest that you FIRST determine the exact placement of your dresser and THEN hang your art/mirror above. The last thing you want to do is make a hole in the wall and then realize the dresser needs to be further to the right or left. Another idea is to lean your art/mirror against the wall (on top of your dresser). And if this is the case, don’t feel like you need to position it in the center of the dresser. With that said, you’ll want to make sure weight is evenly distributed on the dresser. For example, if you like your mirror placed further to the right side of your dresser then you’ll want to make sure you have some accessories on the left side to balance out the weight of the mirror.

Introduce lighting (if the room could use it!)

Some bedrooms don’t need an additional lamp on top of the dresser but if your bedroom could use the extra light source, then I always suggest putting your lamp on one end of the dresser and then balancing out the weight of the lamp with something else on the other end. With the larger polka dot lamp on one end, I balanced it out with the plant on top of the leather box. They both sit around a similar height and the overall weight of them feel pretty even. In the other look, I balanced the smaller gold lamp on top of the blue box with a ceramic bowl of moss on the other end.

use something living

Flowers in a vase, a plant, a bowl of moss, faux greenery (good faux only please!) are all great options to use as your “something living” element. A natural element is always a great addition to a collection of non-living things like books, picture frames and ceramics. I also adore how a plant, for example, can provide really nice movement in any vignette.

use something personal


We all love a family or friend photo, so frame one up and put it on display! I would keep framed photos to a minimum though because things can start to look a little overwhelming FAST. I think 1-3 frames is plenty. 3 might even be pushing it depending on how big/small the frames are and how big/small your dresser is. If you choose to display more than 1 framed photo, make sure that your frames work well with each other.

Less is always more and you don’t want to crowd your dresser so much so that there is no place to rest a hairbrush down because you know, #reallife.

use something sculptural

This could be a stack of books with an object or two on top or a sculptural object all on its own. I will say books are an absolute must when styling any type of surface. They create opportunities for height which help break things up from all being on one playing field. And I especially love to display a cute accessory on top of stacked books just to polish things off. The best part? You don’t have to use pretty coffee table books, you can use any old book. Hell, my favorite place to get books from is the Goodwill store right up the street. I scour their book section, remove the book jackets to make sure the color of the book is in line with the rest of my decor and about $15 later I have a handful of books ready to style with!

use something functional

Oh you know I love something practical and functional. I mean, what kind of decorator/organizer would I be if I didn’t include something that not only looked lovely but also served a purpose?! A “keepsakes” box is a good idea for your functional item. If you have a pile of random cards that you received from a birthday or holiday, or have cute little love notes from a loved one that you’re likely not going to do anything with but you definitely don’t want to trash them, then a “keepsakes” box is perfect for you! And by keeping this “keepsakes” box on top of your dresser, you’re making it pretty darn easy for yourself to toss those little mementos in the box for the time being. Hey, it beats sitting in a messy pile on top of your nightstand or shoved into your closet where they’ll go to die.

some other tips

  • Don’t be afraid to mix colors and materials. This will help keep things unique! Notice how I mixed the brass from the picture frame and the lamps with the black on the large “anchor” art piece and even the black knobs on the dresser. Mixing in some wood tones to warm everything up a bit is always a fun touch too!

  • You don’t have to cover the dresser in accessories. In fact, you definitely want to leave some blank spots because with any type of design, negative space is good. I tend to accessorize in more of a maximalist fashion, which is funny because I’m such a minimalist in every other aspect of my life but that’s just because I LOVE accessories. I love thrifting and collecting small decor pieces from my travels so I absolutely love to display all of those things. For example, in the look using the teak Moby Dick, I could have not used that piece and the dresser still would have looked lovely.

  • Play with height! As I mentioned above, stacking is literally your best friend when it comes to styling. Use a variation of different sized objects. When looking at the dresser, you want your eye to keep moving. And by creating varying heights and using different shaped objects, will help you achieve that.

Well, that’s it guys! I hope you enjoyed this tutorial and more importantly found it helpful! Drop a like or a comment below to let me know I wasn’t writing this so just my mom and husband could read it. HAH!

Thanks for reading!

Candace XO

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