Color My World
Nothing else unifies a design so well—or brings a vintage property up to date so quickly.
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Bang a Gong
Then hang it on the wall. Musical instruments not only sound great. They’ll add something special to your rooms.
Inside many of us lurks a barely restrained wannabe musician. But just because you can’t actually play doesn’t mean musical instruments don’t have a place in home decor.
Guitars, violins, mandolins and banjos naturally come to mind. Any music store worth its strings will sell sturdy and attractive wall hangers, some with handsome wood accents.
Thrift and pawn shops, flea markets, antique stores, eBay and Craigslist can all be gold mines for working instruments that may not stand up to play, but are perfect to display. For collectible or high-dollar instruments, Jason Martz of Accent Music in Wilmington stresses that limiting moisture and temperature fluctuations is important to prevent cracking or bowing, so consider buying a specially designed case with built-in humidity control.
Instruments that will be seen rather than heard require less maintenance, says Carol Boncelet, owner of Village Imports in Newark. Indigenous or ethnic instruments from places like Africa or Australia often combine musicality with intricate handiwork, she says. A large drum from Ghana combined with a custom glass top can serve as a standout end table, for instance, and an object like the Vietnamese gong her store carries can take the place of large pieces of wall art.
“They’re all hand made, they’re interesting looking and they’re not plastic,” Boncelet says. “And when you need to jam, you just pick them up.” —Scott Pruden
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