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How To Grow Your Collection

I started collecting random odds and ends as a child. Anything from bottle caps to Altoids boxes which I would hoard for some time, get bored with, then toss. I suppose one could view this as a budding episode of Hoarders, but as a kid, it gave me a sense of challenge. It was like a treasure hunt and seeing my treasure grow brought a great sense of accomplishment.

Fast forward to my high school years. As my interests in interior design, fashion, and all things decorative arts-related grew, I began to frequent thrift and second-hand stores in search of new treasures. One day I happened upon a beautiful chinoiserie bowl that I had to have. It was just like the glorious bowls I had seen in high-end antique stores and the glossy pages of interior design magazines.

I flipped over the bowl to reveal the price. It was only $2.00. I then realized how exciting it would be to continue to grow my collection. Since finding my first chinoiserie bowl in high school I have greatly expanded my collection.

Collecting is about the journey of finding something you love and the adventure of a never-ending search. The price does not matter. Suddenly a selection of inexpensive bowls becomes chic when placed together.

My tips for growing your collection:

  1. Follow your instincts and collect what draws your attention most.

  2. Find solace in the hunt. Growing a collection organically is far more satisfying than buying in bulk or feeling pressured to spend large sums of money at one time.

  3. Frequent thrift, second-hand, and antique stores. You never know when you will find your next treasure.

  4. Have fun with it! Growing a collection is not an Olympic sport. No need to be uber serious about it.

  5. It is okay to be a hoarder as long as you are a high-end hoarder.

Happy collecting!

- Natalie

Instagram: @natalieealdridge

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