Four qualities to a well-layered room:
1. Comfort There is always a pleasant chair waiting, a place to set your drink, an interesting book to leaf through, and a vista to settle your eyes on (whether it’s a postcard leaning against a mantel or an open window onto Rue Jacob makes no difference). Furniture is arranged with meaning so that even as a first-time visitor, you feel immediately at ease.
2. Passion A well-layered room reflects the kind of life lived within its walls. It offers an intimate glimpse into the lifeblood of its owners and makes you realize, “Aha, now I see who they are.” It’s like a journal entry into their soul.
3. Honesty A well-layered room contains no concealment or pretense. If a piece of much-loved furniture is slightly shabby, it doesn’t hide in a dark corner — it’s valued for its faithful years of service. Books and paintings and objets are collected piecemeal over time instead of during one-stop shopping trips. Nothing is overly precious. Curiosity is welcome.
4. Fearlessness Timidity does not belong in a well-layered room. (Timid rooms are only one layer deep and usually colored beige.) A fearless room embraces the juxtaposition of different sources and patterns and histories. Just like a great cocktail party, it’s filled with an assortment of interesting characters taking part in the same conversation.
From A Bloomsbury Life