6 Reasons to Bring a Decorative Bust Into Your Home

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bust sculpture on mantel

Kelsey Haywood

Thanks to the rise of interior aesthetics like Royalcore and dark academia, we’re noticing one specific trend that we can’t help but love: decorative busts are back.

Whether you opt for something traditional in marble or go for more fun and funky with a pop of color, decorative busts can elevate any room or add a touch of whimsy.

“Busts have made a huge comeback in the design world,” Stephanie Purzycki, the CEO and co-founder of The Finish, shares with The Spruce. “They add a beautiful touch of classic sophistication to any interior.”

Busts add a beautiful touch of classic sophistication to any interior.

Along with Purzycki, we spoke with some of our favorite designers about the best ways to take part in the decorative bust revival. 

01
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Mix Old and New

bedside table with decorative bust

Becca Interiors

“The key to incorporating a bust in a room without making the room feel stuffy is to mix old and new,” Purzycki says. “Add contemporary design elements, such as modern art, lighting, or furniture, to offset the traditional look of a bust.”

Kensington Hill Classic Roman Bust Statue

Kensington Hill Classic Roman Bust Statue
02
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There Are No Rules for Picking a Bust

bust sculpture on mantel

Kelsey Haywood

Historically, busts were created to memorialize idols or family members. These days, you don’t have to pick a bust with a story behind it—though you can certainly do that, too!

“I always choose busts that I actually want to look at with beautiful features,” Purzycki says. “I like ones that are hand-cast and made of plaster or real stone.”

Tip

If you're really looking for something casual, other on-trend options include bust-shaped candles or vases.

Anthropologie Grecian Bust Pot

Grecian Bust Pot

Courtesy of Anthropologie

03
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Sourcing Is Easier Than Ever

Modern pink living room with tiered bookshelf.

Gold a la Mode

If your local antique store doesn’t have many great options, Purzycki points out that there are plenty of other places to go at the moment—all thanks to how on-trend these have become.

“Retailers are jumping in on the bust trend, so you can find great priced ones from stores like CB2, Ballard, or Burke Decor. I like sourcing mine from vintage shops and antique galleries,” she says.

Elle Cole of Elle Cole Interiors agrees. “Our trusted places where we source are antique stores, Chairish, 1stDibs, Round Top, and on occasion, at major retailers like Restoration Hardware."

Ballard Designs Bunny Williams Diana Bust

Diana Bust

Courtesy of Ballard Designs

04
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Busts Make Excellent Space Fillers

Modern Victorian

@love_in_1000_square_feet

If you’re not sure you have a place to place a bust, Purzycki disagrees—because busts work almost everywhere.

“Busts look great in bookcases, consoles, or on a pedestal in a living room," she says. "You can also display one in a stylized open shelf in a kitchen.”

Cole agrees. “Their versatility allows them to be used throughout the home, from fireplace mantels to entry hall tables. If you want to add interest to your bookshelves, find one that has a bit of dominance. This will help it stand out in a crowd of books.”

05
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Lean Into the Classics Vibe

An anthracite gray tiled fireplace framed by a pitch black painted mantel

Ashley Montgomery Design

As Catherine Staples at Aspen & Ivy points out, busts are timeless if used correctly. "They're classic and can incorporate an old-world feel to your home," she says. "A classical bust elevates a space and works well in so many interior styles.”

Staples also predicts the rise of other classical elements in decor. “Have you seen Greek flower pots?  In the right space could be effective, too.”

Wayfair Brown/Gray Atticus Bust

06
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They’re Fun to Treat Seasonally

Small tree next to bust.

Brexton Cole Interiors

“Around the holidays, place a ribbon or wreath around its neck,” Cole suggests. “It’s a touch that embraces the very essence of elevated decorating during the season.”

Unlike many trends, busts are classic enough that with the right piece, you'll always be in style.

"They’re an esprit of curiosity and presence," Cole says. "A decorative bust can elevate a room instantly and produce a style of real interest and unfailing character.”