Nate Berkus just shared how he'd style his favorite old and new home decor to create a timeless, transitional look

One of the most trusted voices in interior design, Nate Berkus just took to Instagram to share genius styling tips for some of his current favorite pieces

A photo of Nate Berkus next to a photo of a bright patterned quilt set on a made bed
(Image credit: mDesign; Amazon / Nate Home)

For many, the process of picking out furniture and design accessories isn't hard at all – it's all about what you love, after all. But styling those items, and making them work in your own home, takes a bit more effort. Just because you found a vintage mirror that speaks to you doesn't necessarily mean you have the right place in your home to let it shine. 

Sometimes, it's best to let the experts lend a helping hand in the styling process. Luckily, interior designer Nate Berkus – who knows a thing or two about curating gorgeous interiors – just took to Instagram to share how he'd style five items that he's loving as of late. From vintage candle holders to a quilt set from his home goods line, his advice can be applied across the whole home. Here's how Nate's interior design style gets put to use.

Nate's advice for styling five unique design accessories

The first item Nate discusses is a set of 'brass and enamel steel sconces.' With a stunning mix of gold and black material, these light fixtures are undoubtedly a design statement – but how would Nate style them in his own home? He suggests looking to a bathroom or powder room, and 'flanking the mirror' with these gorgeous pieces.

'They're so decidedly mid-century, looks very Italian to me. I love the idea of pairing those with a crusty, gilded, very ornate mirror and having the contrast of something that feels 19th-century French with Italian 1950s,' he says in the video.

The next item Nate discusses is a sleek yet ornate vintage candle holder. With room for one candle in the center and five more along the edges, this piece could bring character to any room – all it needs is the right style eye to make it work. From dining table decor to Nate's bathroom-centric suggestion, pairing this item with simple statements is key.

'This silver, five-leg candle holder is really quite special. I have this fantasy of using it on a beautiful, smaller occasional table with ivory candles next to a bathtub,' says Nate.

Nate Berkus
Nate Berkus

Since Nate’s first appearance on The Oprah Winfrey Show in 2002, he has become one of the world’s most recognizable interior designers. He has authored two New York Times bestselling books and stars alongside his husband, Jeremiah Brent, in HGTV's Nate & Jeremiah Home Project.

Onto something a bit more modern, Nate shows off a 'simple cotton velvet throw pillow' in dark gray from the Nate Home collection. Velvet cushions are quite common in interior design, and he says this has a lot to do with their versatility and adaptability. He suggests keeping the throw pillow colors on the simple side to make room for eye-catching pattern elsewhere.

'It's amazing layered on a bed, it's amazing layered with pattern. It looks fantastic on a living room or family room sofa. I love solid velvets – I decorate with them all the time,' says Nate.

The next item is a bit more unusual: a vintage baker's rack. Nate calls this piece 'super industrial,' and says, believe it or not, that the rack has several non-culinary uses throughout the home. The item's removable trays substitute for adjustable shelving, making the rack a functional storage option for multiple rooms.

'I love the idea of this in a home office, holding all the things in woven baskets that you need – craft projects, wrapping paper. I really love the idea of this in a mudroom. You could even add hooks, because there's perforation. It'd be a great spot for packages, for coats,' says Nate.

Plus, the baker's rack can be used for its original use – or at least, something similar. Nate suggests integrating a piece like this into more modern kitchen ideas.

'If you're building a kitchen, instead of doing all new cabinetry, maybe you leave a corner of the kitchen where you can have a vintage piece like this, and you use it to store your platters, or glassware, or even dishes,' he adds.

The last item Nate discusses is a high-contrast patterned quilt set from Nate Home, decorated in bright, burnt orange shapes. Though the set could work in just about any bedroom, he says it would be 'killer for a dorm room.'

'I love how graphic these printed shapes are on this quilt set. And so, for me, I would style it with a simple, upholstered bed or a lighter oak bed. And I think you keep the decorative pillows to a real minimum, and only solid. So maybe some velvet throw pillows. I love the combination of black accents with these two colors – this sort of terracotta, really brown with the cream or white,' he says.

With a bit of help from Nate, you'll be a styling pro in no time. Whether you're working with all new items, looking for antique furniture, or a mix of both (in true Nate fashion), there's always room to fit unique items in.

Abby Wilson
Interior Design News Editor

I am an Interior Design News Editor at Homes & Gardens. Most recently, I worked with Better Homes & Gardens, where I wrote and edited content about home decor, gardening tips, food news, and more. Before that, I studied Journalism and English Literature at New York University. I’ve moved around quite a bit in the last several years, most recently making the trip to London, and love transforming each new space into a comfortable retreat that feels like home. When it comes to decor, I’m most drawn to unique vintage finds and calming colors.