One of the great things about life in the 21st Century is that we have a whole set of interior design traditions to borrow from, and to mix and match. This helps us to add flourishes to our modern spaces that make statements – sometimes big ones, but a lot of the time just quietly stylish ones.
So, when you decide to add a vintage touch to your space, where do you start? Writer and interior designer Estelle Page is here to throw out a few options …
Whether you’ve got a keen eye for a statement piece or you’re re-inventing your furniture single-handedly, you’ll know the joys of discovering that special bit of furniture and imagining how it can transform the aesthetic of a room.
Part of the reason vintage furniture has become so popular is almost certainly the idea that it has a depth of heritage that we won’t ever fully comprehend; an added mystery that adds a real curiosity to the overall effect of a space.
If you’re looking for innovative ways to strike that decorative balance between modern and classic, read on!
Too much bathroom detail can have it looking clunky and cramped, but the right decorative touches can create a beautiful ambiance. With today’s hectic lifestyles, bathrooms tend to be minimal and functional, which is a shame considering that bathrooms can form a haven of calm and relaxation away from the stresses of the day. Try installing a re-purposed wooden bureau that serves as a vanity table, complete with an antique mirror design and a vintage bathroom stool if you have the space. A little luxury can go a long way!
Or why not add a vintage chandelier light fitting to a minimalist setting for an effectively decadent detail? Maybe even a mirrored antique tray holding bathroom essentials such as soap, perfumes and hand lotion to treat visitors to a taste of elegance!
Your bedroom is your refuge, so there are really diverse approaches to adding vintage touches depending heavily on taste. Make the most of your current design with subtle additional details like lamps, book ends, screens and coat-stands, or go all out and create a complete vintage look with matching baroque style bedside tables, or a vanity station complete with antique wash jug and tray.
You can even re-purpose some of your own furniture by sanding down wooden finished pieces to create a ‘distressed’ effect, or replacing handles with antique miniature doorknobs – eBay or flea markets are good places to get hold of these at a great price!
The living room is an opportunity to really get creative! You can make the most of a feature fireplace with vintage accessories like a coal scuttle and stoking tools, even if your fireplace is no longer in action!
With little details such as coffee tables, writing desks and TV cabinets you can take a uniformed approach to the theme by going for pieces from the same era. Distressed leather always looks fantastic and antique, but remember that it does take a little love in the form of a regular polish; there’s a difference between shabby chic and just plain shabby!
Kitchens are unbelievably fun to decorate because they have more potential for accessorising than any other room! Have a look for vintage crockery and tableware on vintage goldmines such as Etsy, and make a meal of storage alternatives such as quaint, wall-mounted shelving units. These look fabulous when contrasted against modern marble or glass kitchen worktops.
An antique fruit and vegetable display on a repurposed butchers table is one of my favourite features in any kitchen. You can find these up-cycled versions in antique and farmhouse stores, or imitations in major retailers.
If you have any tips for incorporating vintage touches in your home decor, then please share them in the comments below.
Estelle Page is a self-employed interior designer and eco warrior, on a mission to create the perfect balance between the pretty and the practical. She writes for Loveglass, and loves nothing more than getting hands on with a new gardening or craft project!