Interior Decorating Tips to Combine Antique Pieces with Modern Furniture
Antique Furnishings are very popular right now used in combination with modern pieces and design, giving a space a more contemporary look while keeping the sophisticated traditional elegance in harmony along with it.
Whether the home is Victorian, modern or any other era, this combination of the old and the new, along with the right accessories, can learn to live together very well assuming that choosing, mixing and placing pieces are carefully thought out.
Timeless pieces such as a Victorian period settee or armchair can be interesting and fascinating when used in an old or modern home. These pieces are a work of art on their own and when paired with new fabrics, they get a fresh and clean new life while keeping the connection to our ancestors alive as well.
Settees, Armchairs and Benches
A great way to integrate antiques with modern is by using bold colors and patterns on fabrics. Bold colors will give an antique settee or armchair a robust feel. Set it up against a fresh white living room wall with clean wainscotting and you've created an inviting new look. For a luxurious look, gather together some fine fabrics with "touch-me" textures.
Another great way to use an antique settee or antique bench is to place it on one side of a round dining table to seat two to three people. Pair it with another sette, two antique armchairs or wingback armchairs. The setting looks especially nice when positioned in a nook or a bay window area.
One thing to remember before making the decision to reupholster is the cost of fabric and labor (which usually runs high) and keep in mind that by making any changes to the original form of the antique, the value may decrease. But if you're not concerned with selling it and want to integrate it into your home, it's well worth the cost.
Antique benches can be used in a foyer or hall, but one particular use that works very well, particularly in a large bedroom, is at the foot of a bed. Tufted headboards add luxury while keeping the room light. Matching bedroom sets tend to make a room look heavy and out of date, so keeping one or two antique pieces paired with upholstered pieces freshen up the look of a bedroom. An upholstered bench is the perfect spot to tie shoelaces or throw a blanket on. A unique mix of textiles and a fabulous set of drapes will make the room look contemporary while keeping a cozy atmosphere.
Chest or Trunk
Used as luggage or storage throughout history, a chest or trunk is another piece that can give an unusual visual effect when placed at the end of a bed. There are a variety of wood finishes and styles to choose from. The combination of a heavier style room works well with a trunk that has bulk or visual weight. To give a bedroom that luxurious modern atmosphere, a headboard covered in velvet, using light soft monochromic colours throughout the room will be pleasing to the eye and showcase the antique chest. A couple of mirrored night tables flanking the bed and chandelier give it that added touch of modern glam. White bedding works well with this combination, keeping all the lines crisp and clean.
Chest of Drawers
A gorgeous traditional style chest of drawers used as a nightstand looks fabulous when placed next to a double bed, given you have enough space. Using one or displaying symmetry by flanking two on either side of a bed gives a room a new dimension. Mixing different styles of furnishings in a bedroom is key in giving it a personal and welcoming feeling. Some popular colors to work with that are also soothing to the eye are taupe-gray, various shades of yellow or blue on accessory pieces or greens. A dark ceiling in gray can add some drama accompanied by an antique brass chandelier to make the room pop. A chest, trunk or chest of drawers can also be very functional in a foyer. They give your entryway a contemporary look and you can also store shoes and other whatnots keeping the area free of clutter. Keeping the space minimal is the key to having a modern look. The chest can be accessorized with a modern table lamp or a quirky vintage floor lamp along with a hanging mirror hung just over the table. The mirror can either be minimalistic with straight lines or very obscure with wood, gold, silver or a painted finish.
Old mirrors add a lot of character to a room, especially when they're aged and the mirror inlay is worn. A beautifully hand crafted French wall mirror, for example looks perfectly at home sitting over a crisp, clean white linen sofa with squared edges. Underneath, a large graphic print rug, either in black and white or brightly colored rug. Accessories such as large pieces of pottery can adorn the seating area.
Tall mirrors such as a trumeau take on a jazzy vibe when simply rested up against a bedroom wall angled just a tad. They also give an added dimension to a living room and reflect more light into the room. Trumeau mirrors were originally made to hang in the space between two windows as well as over a fireplace. The mirror can be in any kind of finish, some more intricate designs have an oil painting inlaid into the top portion surrounded with wood carvings. They look great resting on unfinished rusty wooden floors, maybe a Louis VI chair or chaise beside it to give it that romantic appeal, keeping the rest of the space sparse and almost "empty" allowing them to take center stage. Neutrals throughout the room in sandy beiges and taupes, textures in linens, taffeta with a few soft throws or furs added to give some luxury to finish it off. If there's a fireplace, finish it in a black laquer, the mirror can sit off to the side, possibly in the corner.
This one is a classic and it never goes out of fashion with its traditional and classic lines. Coined in 1900 after the "trend setting" Earl of Chesterfield who commissioned the first such sofa, it's loved for it's tufting, classic shape and most of all, it's comfort. It can be matched up in so many ways and goes with just about any other style of furnishing. The Chesterfield in leather can boast an edgy look used in an industrial styled living room, paired with one or two designer chairs, such as the iconic Eames Lounge Chair, using molded plywood technology pioneered in the '40s. Commercial buildings integrated into lofts with a raw space and exposed brick go really well with a Chesterfield piece and industrial tables, lamps, etc.