Home Furnishing: How One Special Piece Can Transform Your Space

Before she ever dreamt of owning Elements East, Meg had a passion for home furnishing with Asian furniture. Originally, she was attracted to the deep history of each piece, which brought dimension to a more modern environment. Meg realized, after multiple moves, that the most unique pieces fit wherever she went. From a craftsman home built in 1900 to an Italian style home, to her current modern farm house, her cherished Asian pieces were always welcome additions.

Today, Meg and Elements East’s Milwaukee-based team help others see how one beautiful piece can change an entire room. While most of us aren’t quite sure how to integrate the old with the new, or the brightly colored pieces with our neutrals, Meg’s here to show you that it can be done…beautifully.

Below, you’ll be inspired by the ways that Meg has integrated Asian furnishings into her own home. Also, she recently had the opportunity to work with Molly Fay from The Morning Blend. Molly was looking for some inspiration in her own dining room, and you’ll love the results! Meg’s goal? Create an environment that is understandably unexpected, and that reflects her customer’s personal, one-of-a-kind style.

Molly’s Dining Room: Before and After

Molly’s Dining Room – Before

Molly lives in a sweet, traditional home in Whitefish Bay. She felt that her dining room was functional, and had begun to express her personal style, but it wasn’t quite “finished.” Meg suggested that all it really needed was that one special piece, and a few accessories to bring it to life.

Molly’s Dining Room – After

Meg didn’t need to change much, or spend a lot to create a more lively and “finished” look for Molly. In fact, it only took three pieces from Elements East to complete! First, Meg added the low buffet table in red, and a pair of Chinese calligraphy prints from our collection. Then, she pulled accessory pieces from other areas of Molly’s home.

Here, notice the neutral base of the walls, trim, and floor. Adding unexpected color through the buffet and paintings brought the space to life. (If you’re interested in a room makeover like Molly’s, check out our in-home design services).

Meg’s home also has a neutral base of white walls, dark trim, and gray cabinets. Next, discover how she has added a few special pieces to make her modern home one-of-a-kind.

Bright Furniture Pops In Neutral Surroundings


Take this antique buffet, modernized with bright blue lacquer. Despite its ancient design, the color and hardware make an incredible statement. Accessories make all the difference, and they don’t have to be expensive. Meg finds accessories at national chains or even uses antiques that she finds online. Choosing the right finishes and scale will integrate a bold piece into the environment purposefully.

Mismatched Pieces Create Interest and Contrast

We live in a very symmetrical world. But, there are no rules when it comes to mixing and matching beautiful home furnishings! These two antique cabinets have a similar scale and color, which makes them a perfect pair. The rich, warm wood creates a beautiful contrast against the cool white tile. And, when you think outside of the box, you can repurpose an old piece into something new, like Meg has with these antique cabinets, turned his and hers sinks.

Start Small And Surprise Everyone

You may not be ready to add a huge piece of furniture to your collection, and that’s okay. Start small. Use a neutral area in your home, like this tile and ceramic tub, and add one contrasting piece. Our rustic wooden vessel brings an entirely new texture to the space. It’s amazing, the power of one interesting accessory to change a room completely.

Highlight Your Personality & Style

Your home shouldn’t appear as if it was pre-ordered from a catalog. Great style can be paired with any and all personalities to create a space as unique as you are. We love combining antique Asian accessories with our favorite modern pieces to develop a truly personal style. Styled bookcases are a great way to decorate without committing to one forever piece!

Where to Start

You don’t have to be planning an overall remodel to begin integrating Elements East into your life. Begin by taking a picture of a simple bookshelf or side table. Then, visit our Third Ward location at 191 N. Broadway. Our staff will be happy to show you our truly unique offerings and share the wonderful stories of our pieces. If you’re dreaming of a larger piece, select a spot in your home or office, take measurements, and photograph the area. If you are uncertain about the size or scale, or have concerns about placement, we offer in-home design services. Either way, we’re excited to help you find the perfect piece!

Just remember, contrast is everything. Old with new, bright with neutral, and texture all around will add interest and personal style to your space.

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