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Guide to Creating an Eclectic Kitchen

This design links unexpected elements in a cohesive look.

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Mixing Elements

Work with a simple backdrop to show off your favorite piece of artwork or collection of dishes. Design by Jennifer Nilsen.

When homeowners haven't given much thought to how they'll put a room together, or they're living with a decade's worth of haphazardly collected furniture, it's common to hear them joke about having an eclectic style. But in terms of interior design, "eclectic" doesn't mean "unfocused" or "random." It means linking unexpected design elements and incorporating fun, funky or even outrageous items in visually cohesive ways.

"I see 'eclectic' as more of an old-meets-new mentality," says designer Erinn Valencich, owner of OmniArte Design in Los Angeles. "I like to mix modern and traditional elements in my designs. The kitchen is the heart of the home, and more and more people are turning to a cleaner, more updated kitchen, even if the rest of the home stays very traditional."

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