Symmetry can be a beautiful thing: it’s a visual cue that things have been thought through and designed with intention. If symmetry is one of the things we use to measure a person’s attractiveness, consciously or not, why wouldn’t it work for interiors as well?
And yet, it’s hardly the be-all, end-all that many DIY design books make it out to be. While we wouldn’t recommend ignoring symmetry, following it to a T isn’t the perfect route either. These three rooms prove that keeping things a little off has the power to make them just right. Starting with…
The living area in Nate’s former Manhattan townhome. While the mantel tends to be the most obvious place to go symmetrical, see how the differing heights on either end – not to mention the fabulous pineapple-inspired sculpture! – make for a more playful move in a traditional spot?
In a guest room, a bold Otomi textile takes over one wall, while the adjacent wall stays simple and spare. Not only is the lack of symmetry great-looking here, it allows a large-scale print to not feel overbearing, since it’s only on one side.
And in yet another living area once inhabited by Nate (there’s that pineapple sculpture again!), we see the magic of not only an assymetrical mantel, but different chairs on either side of the coffee table. The fact that it’s happening alongside some seriously lovely symmetry – note the brown chairs and stools – makes it all the more unexpected and chic.
The moral here: rules aren’t just meant to be broken, they’re meant to be broken, mixed up, and experimented with once again.
All photography by Roger Davies for The Things That Matter