Design inspiration comes from the most unexpected places.

This weekend, while walking through the lobby of the Renaissance Hotel in downtown Phoenix, I admired the chic sitting areas throughout the space. (Admittedly, I am a hotel design junkie.) The lobby’s haute spot is a large conversation area that mixes organic elements with a healthy dose of glam—in blue and brown to boot.

Anyway, here’s what really caught my eye: a collection of hour glasses staged on a table behind one of the sofas. 

And this is where the DIY part comes in: Check out the simple woodblocks used to amp up the height and impact of the display. The designer not only utilized a large white block to boost the entire collection, but also used multi-level, dark blocks as stages for the individual hourglasses. This treatment adds rhythm to the display while making the collection appear more substantial and definitely more stylish.

A mix of modern shapes and organic motifs makes this hotel sitting area uber chic.

The lesson learned: Group your collection in one location (never scatter it around a room) and elevate each piece on understated platforms to make the overall collection appear more important and substantial.

For you do-it-yourselfers, paintable wood blocks are available at most any lumber store where they can be custom cut for your needs.

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