Naturally Stylish

The cold austerity of modernism is no stranger to the design shops of New York City, but some boutiques have been blazing a new trend: diorama décor. Where hard lines and minimalism once ruled, there is now an artful clutter of quirkier furnishings, including natural objects suitable for a Victorian curio cabinet.

"Interest in these items has grown tenfold in the past three years," says David Morsa, manager of the design store De Vera, which sells horns, glass insects and other artifacts befitting a zoologist's parlor. Tellingly, Morsa's title is curator, as if the store were...

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