Have you been feeling inspired by all the pictures of boho and mid-century modern homes on Instagram and Pinterest that are full of plants, but feel discouraged because there’s no way you can keep that many plants alive, let alone looking good?
If so, you’re not alone, and you also don’t have to miss out on a plant-filled home. While looking after a plant family is a part-time job, today’s artificial plants look almost indistinguishable from the real thing, and they won’t die, get discoloured, or out-grow your home. Artificial plants are the perfect solution for anyone who wants to come home to an indoor garden, but doesn’t want to actually be responsible for the gardening.
So, what are the best ways to style artificial plants in your home? Styling artificial plants is actually easier than live plants, since you aren’t restricted by how much light reaches that area or whether you can easily water the plant. Here are some of the best ways to style artificial plants:
21 Ways to Style Artificial Plants in Your Home
1. Wrap Artificial Vines around Exposed Beams
Have you ever been to a wedding held in a converted barn, looked up, and seen that the exposed beams have flowers or vines loosely snaking around them? This is the perfect way to style artificial vines and soften the sometimes bulky and harsh look of exposed beams in the roof of your home. You can also do this to great effect around pillars and the banister of your stairs. You can see a great example of the latter with an open upper floor here.
2. Use Interesting Plant Pots for More Visual Interest
Real plants quickly outgrow their pots, meaning you’re constantly having to find a home for a larger and larger plant. Artificial plants can be placed in any container, so you can choose your containers purely for the aesthetic. You can use jugs, buckets, statues, vases, plant pots, and anything else you can find. If you have an empty corner on the floor or on a side stable, try gathering all your artificial plants, pots, and other statues here to create an interesting focal point in the room. Make sure you use artificial plants of varying sizes and shapes.
3. Use Hanging Plant Pots
Macrame hanging planters have come into fashion in a big way over the past few years, and they won’t be going anywhere for the foreseeable future. You can buy these decorative hanging pots from independent sellers on Etsy or buy a pack on Amazon for less than £20. Use artificial vines and other plants and hang them in windows. This works particularly well in kitchen and bathroom windows, as well as in dark areas of the home where live plants can’t thrive.
4. Create a Terrarium
A terrarium is essentially a tiny garden in a glass container. The idea with live plants is that the moisture will be captured in the vase or container and be recycled. The reality is that they’re usually very difficult to keep alive, and require constant trimming if they do thrive. You can create the same look (for a lot less!) with artificial moss and other small artificial plants and the only maintenance you’ll need to do is dust the glass from time to time. Terrariums make a great focal point on a coffee table, side table, or dresser.
5. Backlight Your Artificial Plants
This styling idea works in any room in the house, but is particularly popular in formal dining rooms and on balconies and patios. Choose a pot you love, and an artificial plant (ideally at least 2.5 feet tall) and place them in a dark corner of the room or outside space. Then use a spotlight or fairy lights to bounce light off of the wall behind it, or wrap the fairy lights through the artificial plant. This is a great way to create moody lighting and light up dark spaces.
6. Create a Plant Shelf
If you don’t like to use trinkets and books on your shelves, or worry that will block the light too much, use a set of 2 to 3 shelves and fill the shelf with small pots of varying colours and textures, though try to stick to the same colour palette as the rest of the room. You can then fill the pots with any artificial plants you like, or cut pieces off a larger artificial plant and arrange them in the pots to create your own look.
7. For a Beachy Vibe, Glue Artificial Plants to Driftwood
If you like a relaxed, beachy or tropical vibe in your home, source a piece of driftwood (pale pieces work well, but choose whatever calls to you) and glue small artificial plants to the wood so it looks as though they are growing naturally out of the nooks and crannies. Again, use whatever plants you like, but artificial succulents, vines, and air plants all work well for this.
8. Place Artificial Vines Above Your Kitchen Cabinets
Most of us have that awkward space above our wall kitchen cabinets that just gathers dust, or it’s where we shove our shopping bags. While that does keep things tidy and generally out of sight, any glance up there usually reminds you that you’ve got some serious dusting to do at some point to get rid of the cobwebs. Instead, fill that void with artificial vines or artificial topiary balls or box hedges to draw the eye up and make the room appear larger. Best of all, you can just get them down once a month to dust and they’ll require no other maintenance!
9. Elevate Your Plants with Stands
Plant stands are another big trend at the moment, and they’re a great way to vary the height of the furniture and plants in your room. When everything is the same height, it draws the eye down and makes the space feel cramped, so plant stands are a stylish way to make the space feel bigger. If you choose a tall planter use artificial vines to trail out of the stand, and place large, artificial palms and other plants on the floor or low stands.
10. Rotate Your Plants Seasonally
Since you’re using artificial plants, you can frequently try new shapes, colours, and textures, without worrying about being overrun or killing a new plant because you don’t know how to properly care for it. Consider using dark, leafy artificial plants in winter and more exotic artificial plants like an artificial lemon tree in spring and summer to lighten your home.
11. Use Baskets as Planters
Woven baskets look incredible with plants, but they don’t always play well with live plants. The natural fibres of the weave can mold if you get it wet, which can seep into rugs and carpets below. Of course, you don’t need to worry about that with artificial plants, so simply choose a woven basket in a style you love and place your chosen artificial plant inside.
12. Use Artificial Succulents in Small Spaces
Large artificial plants are stunning, but they take up a lot of space. One way you can infuse your home with life without actually turning it into a jungle is to use small artificial succulents and plants in small spaces, such as on bathroom shelves and counters, on side tables and desks, and narrow windowsills.
13. Use Artificial Moss Wall Panels
Artificial moss wall panels work well in narrow hallways and in the kitchen to infuse greenery into the space without you needing to give up essential standing or worktop space.
14. Group Plants in Odd Numbers
When you group plants together, regardless of size or type, group them in odd numbers. Besides a few instances where symmetry is necessary, this will look far better than an even number. For example, a group of 3 plants will look great in a small corner of a windowsill, while 4 will look too bulky.
15. Use Plants to Create Natural Dividers
If you have one of those 70s dinner hatches between your kitchen and dining room that you no longer use, consider filling the space with plants instead to allow the light to shine through but to better divide the space. For dividing up a room, such as a kids’ bedroom or office from a living area, place pebbles in a long planter and push bamboo sticks into the pebbles at intervals and weave artificial vines around and between the bamboo sticks. This again divides the space without looking bulky.
16. Use a Tiered Bookshelf
You can find plant shelves for this, but you’ll likely have to pay more. Instead, look for an open bookshelf with varied heights and place different artificial plants on each shelf. Using uniform plant pots looks great on shelves where just one pot fits on each tier, while varied colours and sizes work best if you’re grouping the plants together.
17. Utilise a Vintage Trinket Cabinet
If you love looking around antique shops, look for a small cabinet with little individual square drawers – the kind used for jewellery or small tools. Place the cabinet and then pull out a few of the drawers and place artificial plants in them, as well as along the top of the cabinet. This looks adorable, and you can use the other empty draws to tidy clutter.
18. Wind Vines Around Wire Picture Holders
Have you ever seen those wire wall fixtures you’re supposed to clip photos to? If so, you can use these to great effect with artificial vines. Hang them in place of artwork and weave the artificial vines around the wire. You can leave the look like that, or you can take it a step further and add fairy lights and/or pictures of your friends and family.
19. Fill a Glass Display Cabinet
Vintage glass display cabinets are extremely beautiful, but knowing what to fill them with is a challenge. The use of these cabinets for house plants has caught on, and you can now find these glass cabinets brand new in stores. Wherever you find it, fill the cabinet with unique artificial plants and pots, and mix with other trinkets and textures (such as a wooden board or tea tray) as you see fit!
20. Wind an Artificial Vine Around Your Standing Light or Bed Frame
If you’re working with limited space and have a tall, mid-century style standing light, take an artificial vine and wrap it loosely around the light’s post. This is an understated and pretty way to infuse some greenery into a small space.
You can get the same effect by wrapping artificial vines around your bed frame – just a single strand along the top and/or bottom of your bed works well in almost all styles of room.
21. Create a Centrepiece with Succulents
Artificial succulents are almost indistinguishable from the real thing (all your guests will touch them to know for sure!) and make a great centrepiece. You can group small pots on a decorative plate, or find a deep dish or bowl you love and fill the bowl with small pebbles or sand and plant the succulents into the base. Try to mix up the colour and leaf shape of your succulents for a natural look. This makes a beautiful summer centrepiece in almost any style of home.
Artificial plants can be styled in all the ways you see live plants, but with more flexibility. While live-plant owners are confined to where the plant will best thrive, you can place your plant anywhere regardless of light or practicality and reap the benefits of beautiful, cascading green leaves. They’re perfect for filling awkward spaces and creating visual interest higher up in the home, without the concern of how you’ll water them without spilling water all over the floor! To see our full range of artificial plants, click here.