I love beautifully-styled, well-functioning nightstands! Lots of the same rules apply to nightstand styling and mantel styling but I especially appreciate a little functionality when it comes to my nightstand decor. Where a mantel is usually just aesthetic, a nightstand might hold jewelry that's taken off at the end of the day, books to read at night, or a light to assist in any of these tasks.
Here are some items I like to use on nightstands that either fall under the aesthetic or functional category. Some of these definitely overlap (i.e. a lamp can be aesthetically pleasing and functional) and they should! Let's not just buy something hideous for the sake of it's functionality, for the most part there are plenty of options out there so let's make things beautiful.
Aesthetic // art, sculpture, decorative objects, flowers, plants, candles, vase
Functional // lamp, clock, coaster, jewelry dish, tray, books, bookends
But what's the trick to styling all these items? Like I mentioned before, you can always refer to this post about mantel styling for some tips, but a good rule of thumb is to use something vertical, something horizontal, and something sculptural. These elements play well together and will make your nightstand vignette feel balanced.
You don't have to use only one vertical item or only one sculptyral item, but you can! It just depends on how large your nightstand is and how you like it styled. Usually, the more items you use the more eclectic it will look. Check out the pictures and descriptions below to get a visual of what I mean!
What do you think, do you have it down? I bet you're ready to get started! But let's get real here people. What you should really do is turn your nightstand into a bed for your dog. Because, duh.