Saturday, November 3, 2012

Hang your head ...

I shall preface this by saying, "I have never shot anything that could or should be mounted and hung on a wall." (And, I have no desire to do so.) With that said, I have seen some gorgeous spaces that feature rather impressive taxidermy specimens that contribute to the character of the rooms.

Image above of a mounted Scimitar-horned Oryx, a member of the antelope family.
Several thousand oryx are in captivity, with plans to reintroduce them into the wild.

I've read reports from the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) that a quarter of the world's antelope species is under threat of extinction due to unsustainable harvesting and human damage to their habitats from the Sahara to Tibet. It's easy to appreciate the animal's striking beauty, but difficult to approach thinking of its demise.

Image via Coco Cozy.

Handsome mounts add interest and an earthiness to a monochromatic decor - giving the space a worldly, well-traveled feel.

I much prefer to see man-made materials used with a wink and nod to taxidermy inspiration, as with the pressed-board imitator in the image above (left) via Pad Envy. Mounting an impressive rack is another way to pay homage to nature's finest horned creatures as in the image above (right) via Angie Helm Interiors.

Image of Jenna Lyon's NYC dressing room via Elle Decor.

An impressive pair of antlers attest to wild game's grandeur. For many species, antlers fall off after they mature, and the dropped antlers can be harvested without harm to the animal, and subsequently mounted.

Image via Blood and Champagne.

The practice of gathering shed antlers or "sheds" is referred to as "shed hunting." Sheds are used to create handsome interior decor items that are in high demand.

Image via The Enchanted Home.

I love the look of sheds used in home lighting. From sconces to chandeliers, each fixture is as unique as the animal itself.

Image of Adirondak Antler Chandelier via Restoration Hardware.

So, no need to hang your head, hang a light instead.

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