Today it is quite common to mix styles - every epoch has at least one speciality - so why not take advantage of the parts which we like and avoid the rest we may not like.
Curved lines are combined with straight ones, bright colours are mixed with subdued hues and as long as there is a certain harmony depending on layout, objects and space everything may be used if you like it.
Natural taste is as is known very subjective and driven by subconscious vibes. Yet there is another taste that can be taught and learned i.e. you need to learn about the rules of composition. These are in principle the same rules you need to know when creating an excellent piece of art. A good painter will always recognize whether a painting is unbalanced and inherits severe mistakes - a good interior designer will know immediately when objects (including furniture) are positioned the best way, where colours, textures and patterns compliment each other and where focus is necessary to lead the eye: when everything plays together to form a harmonious unit. Harmony in my opinion is the most important part in a room in order to feel peace and affinity.
Here is a great quote that says it all.
"A harmonious room will be achieved when the rules of scale, balance, contrast and rhythm are followed. In addition, a harmonious room will have furnishings and other elements that relate to one another within a interior decorating scheme." (Interior Decorating)
What I have done here was virtually replacing the original display cabinet with this silk scroll.The original image (see below) had an open build-in display cabinet with a collection of very beautiful and probably very expensive china. But you have to see this in detail very near. From the distance this somehow retreats into the background despite the lighting. I would be looking for an eyecatcher, something that draws you in even from a greater distance.
original image source from http://www.getdecorating.com
the original design
The scroll is from the series of ornamental silk scrolls which depict motifs from southeast Asia/India. The Palace is an hommage to the sophisticated ancient architecture you can find in India. If you would like to read more about the "making of" this extravagant piece and see a lot of large detail images please check this link.
( from the Ornaments series)
75" x 23", silk scroll