How To Use Curios The Way Webster’s Intended

Ripiana CurioA curio, by definition, is a decorative object considered novel, rare or unusual, creating curiosity. And a traditional curio cabinet is intended to display these objects.

At Contemporary Furniture, we believe today’s curio should create as much interest as the objects it displays, whether you plan to fill your curio with collectables, fine china, artwork, photos or sentimental treasures.

Depending on your own sense of style, you may opt for a classic rectangle-shaped curio. The Ripiana Walnut Curio (above) blends the clean lines of modern furniture with a traditional wood frame to create an elegant, contemporary piece.

Flair CurioIf you’re looking to create a focal point and inspire conversation, try a curio with a modern shape and bold finish, like silver, white or black metal. The Flair Curio (left), available in espresso and white, is appropriately named for its unique shape that flairs out like a vase. With three glass shelves, frosted glass on the sides and a mirrored back, the Flair Curio is as functional as it is stylish.

Take flexible function a step further with the Flair Curio Bar (below), with two shelves inside the curio and one large bar shelf on top. Use that top shelf to display your treasures, or use it to hold martini glasses and a platter of hors d’oeuvres during your next cocktail party.

Flair Curio BarOnce you’ve chosen your curio, we recommend adding objects of different dimensions, shapes, styles and textures to create as much interest and depth as possible. Minimize the number of items on each shelf so nothing gets lost.

Most importantly, have fun with it. Make it your own. Use it to tell a story. Feel free to break the rules and create curiosity in your own way.

Share a photo of your favorite curio! Tell us your inspiration and why you love it.

About John Kenyon

is the National Sales Manager at Advance Furniture located in Western New York, the largest retailer of Modern and Scandinavian furniture in the region. He welcomes visitors from across the country who travel to purchase from his exclusive selection of contemporary furniture and enjoy the services of experienced sales staff and interior designers. You can visit his online storefront at