Outside In

Spa environments have relied on this technique for years: By bringing organic elements into your home decor, you create a soothing connection to the natural world. The more high-tech and busy our lives become, the more you can find the balance you crave in nature — and the more nature you bring into your home, the better you will feel.

“Most of us love to hike or garden because nature helps us feel calm and gain perspective. Decor can remind us of those feelings,” says Palmer Davis, marketing manager for Beard’s Framing.

Nature, with its infinite variability of color and texture, has always inspired artists and designers. Right now, using natural elements as the focal point or in material expression is a hot — or should we say, soothing — trend in home decor.

You can bring the outside in literally and figuratively with these pro tips from Beard’s, a Northwest local expert in art, printing and framing.

Turn nature into art

Flowers, pinecones, shells, graceful branches – displaying three-dimensional objects in the home has been considered an art for hundreds of years. With special framing techniques and proper preservation, a simple walk in the woods can yield a unique and personal collection of natural elements worthy of display.


A simple tree cross-cut is elevated when printed in gold ink and placed in a gilded frame.

Hint at natural themes

Whether you are using your own photography or choosing from an artist’s or photographer’s selection, natural textures and warmer woods are trending in frame moldings and matting. “We are seeing a return to an overall softer, less processed look in frame styles,” says Freya Lund, a Beard’s designer. “From rustic styles and metals to aged pine and reclaimed woods, these frames work for our modern, casual lifestyle — a lifestyle that appreciates the value nature brings.”

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Soften up a gallery wall by using rustic wood and metal frames.

Elevate your photographs

Professional printing techniques and papers can turn your phone photos into beautiful art worthy of framing. “Most people think their own photos aren’t good enough to print,” says Davis. “But if you love the photo, it’s worth printing.” Scenic photography of places you love, natural details from your travels or an image from your backyard — all inspire greater emotional enjoyment and connection to the finished work hanging in your home.

You don’t need a professional camera to do it. “Most mobile phones take photos big enough to print,” says Lund. “We find the resolution is usually high enough to print an image about 14 inches wide.” Lund points clients to archival matte paper giving images a rich finish ready for framing. For a more contemporary look that infuses landscapes and nature photography with deep saturation, Lund suggests a frameless ChromaPrint™ aluminum panel.

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Make a so-so photo swoon-worthy by printing on a textured paper.