Decorative folding screens are one of those things that can be very intimidating to use – it’s even a little intimidating to suggest one to a client because it’s hard to explain their impact without trying one out in the space! In many ways it’s one of those things that still is “decorator” territory. But when there are so many beautiful options out there (and not all expensive), it’s a lost opportunity to not try one out. So here are my suggestions for how to use a decorative screen.
In place of art
Use a really beautiful screen where you might use a great piece of art, like behind the sofa or above the buffet, or just cause it’s pretty.
To soften a corner
Sometimes, because of the flow of traffic in a room or the focus of other focus areas, you’ll end up with a weird corner that is big enough for SOMETHING but doesn’t really fit anything too practical(like a pair of chairs where people could sit together) but where one chair by its lonesome looks awkward. Screen to the rescue! It makes the corner feel less like a black hole and adds purpose and character to the chair or whatever you place with it. You might also use one to make the corner next to a sofa with a side table feel less empty when there isn’t enough space there for other furniture, or a wall feel less far away or disconnected.
To add depth or architectural interest
Most frequently seen behind large furniture like a bed or sofa, but also sometimes just along a wall. They can also be used in place of a headboard (or in addition to one).
To divide a room or studio apartment
Some of my favorite screens
Photos via Lazaro Rosa Violan, Dallas Shaw on Poppin, House Beautiful, Kips Bay Decorator Show House on Habitually Chic(R), Maison de Luxe show house on So Haute, Martyn Lawrence-Bullard on Elle Decor, Lonny, Miles Redd in House Beautiful, Lonny.