Nothing adds an extra touch of charm to a space quite like vintage pieces do. We love mixing antiques into modern designs to give it a little more character. The best part about incorporating antiques and vintage goodies into your home is that they are one-of-a-kind and unique to your space. Are you new to the thrifted home decor game? Don’t you worry, we’ve rounded up some of our top tips for antique shopping and how to incorporate your vintage finds into a modern space.
Hunting for antiques is just as fun as using them in your home design! Every time I go vintage shopping, I find myself walking around the store multiple times just so that I’m sure I’ve look at everything. Before going on the hunt for vintage finds, scout out the best places in your area – antique shops, thrift shops, and even yard sales. I also advise that you make a list of things that you’re searching for and the characteristics that you’d like each piece to have. For example, if you’re looking for an antique frame for a piece of art you have, you’ll want to know the measurements that it needs to be and what finish and/or color you want. This helps make it easier while shopping since thrift shops can often be overwhelming. Also, be sure to know general concepts of historical eras of design (such as Art Deco, Neoclassical, etc.) so that you can identify the rarity and style of a piece.
As you shop for vintage pieces, keep in mind the quality and structure more so than the cosmetic appearance. You may find an antique accent table that has a beautiful form and is in great condition, but you might not like the color. That shouldn’t be a deal breaker, you can always add a fresh coat of paint to give the piece a face lift while also keeping its aged character. The most important part of vintage shopping is to really examine the item and learn as much as you can about it. This means checking if the drawers or cabinets properly open, if there are any chips, missing any pieces, or general wear and tear. Once you’ve made sure that the piece is in good condition, ask the seller as many questions as you can, such as what time period it is from and who the previous owner was. Lastly, try to picture where this piece would go in your home and decide if it is worth your money. Sometimes antiques can be a steal, but they can also be pricey depending on the rarity and history.
For those of you who are new to the thrifted side of home decorating, we recommend that you start off small. Decorative accessories such as vases, baskets, trays, figurines, candle holders, and jewelry boxes are the perfect finds to incorporate when starting out.
When it comes to designing with bigger vintage pieces, this is where it’s important to not be afraid and get out of your comfort zone! Some larger antiques that are easy to bring into your home without breaking your aesthetic include console tables, side tables, mirrors, artwork, chests, and rugs (we REALLY love antique rugs). Using these pieces in a modern design can be a little tricky. Our advice is to go with neutral colors and materials that work with relatively any space, such as a warm wood table. We found this super cute dining table with matching chairs from a local antique shop and paired it with modern elements for one of our projects and it really gave the room a unique look!
If you find a vintage piece that stands out a little more and you don’t know how to work it into your aesthetic, make it the focal point of the space or give it it’s own area, like a vintage vignette in a sense. For example, we found this fun vintage wall decor that says “Welcome Buddies” on it and we made it the focal point of the space by pairing it with a simple black console table.
Looking for an online antique shop since in-person thrifting is kinda limited right now? Our online store, The Founders Collection, has tons of one-of-a-kind vintage goodies!