With growing support for sustainability and ‘up-cycling’, the appeal of hunting for antique furniture has never been more popular. Millennials especially are looking to decorate their homes whilst minimising their environmental impact. This means purchasing items that have been in existence for 20 years (vintage), 50 years (collectibles) or more than 100 years (antiques) is all the rage.
The thing is, it can sometimes be difficult to meld the old with the new in terms of interior design. So, here are a few interior decorating principles to keep in mind when decorating with antique furniture.
“A room should never allow the eye to settle in one place. It should smile at you and create fantasy.” – Juan Montoya
Antique furniture can be a perfect centrepiece for a room, as these types of pieces have a uniqueness and sense of character that can be quite striking. However, don’t forget that smaller antique pieces can provide subtle accents and interest to an otherwise simple room. Centrepieces may come in the form of large items like armchairs, a rug or dining tables, whilst accents can be mirrors or small tables. Integrating antiques into your home through a mix of centrepieces and accents can give a sense of variety to your decorating that doesn’t feel formulaic.
“There are two things that make a room timeless: a sense of history and a piece of the future”. – Charlotte Moss
Otherwise known as layering, adding older pieces to a room of today can make your design feel as though it speaks to a new and fresh style. On the other hand, a room full of antiques would simply create the effect of being transported back in time. If a wholly old-fashioned aesthetic is not what you’re after, consider which time eras integrate well together and use antiques to complement an otherwise modern room.
“The best rooms have something to say about the people who live in them”. – David Hicks
An important yet often overlooked interior design principle is that your home should be designed simply to make you feel good in that space. Antiques that serve a purely decorative purpose may make a place feel more like a museum than a home. Antiques don’t need to be treated as fragile. They will continue to stand the test of time so long as you take care of them so consider purchasing antiques that are functional as well as attractive to make your home feel lived in.
“Be faithful to your own taste, because nothing you really like is ever out of style.” – Billy Baldwin
Having a strategy or a plan in mind is not a bad idea when it comes to decorating but don’t let yourself be so tied down to interior decorating rules that you don’t buy things you actually like. If you’re still figuring out your own personal taste and style, start small. Buy something low-commitment like a lamp or a vase, and as you become more assured about what your preferences, you can begin investing in those larger, more dominant, statement pieces. Be confident in the knowledge that if you can see a certain charm in a piece of furniture, then someone else will too. Decorating should be an expression of personal taste so don’t be afraid to make a space your own.
Now that you’re feeling inspired to decorate your room with some one-of-a-kind, vintage gems, all that’s left to do is find them. Good luck!