4 Tips for Decorating with Antiques the Easy Way

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Last Updated on June 7, 2022

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Corner of a room filled with old painted furniture, vintage clocks, crates, dishes, and other tabletop decor

Decorating with Antiques the Easy Way

If you’re like me, I love having decor pieces in my home that tell a story and spark conversation! As much as I love shopping the aisles of Home Goods and Hobby Lobby, nothing beats a unique vintage piece with tons of character. When you need a little something to break up your neutral anchor pieces, decorating with antiques can be a great way to make your decor pop without making a huge statement (I do love a cool statement antique though!).

Finding and incorporating antiques into your home decor may seem daunting, but there are so many easy ways to create a vintage farmhouse feel by using just a few pieces. If styling your home isn’t something you love to do, but want to have a specific look or feel, hiring an interior designer to help you transform your space could be the perfect idea! There are so many benefits to hiring an interior designer to help you create your perfect space!

Here are a few of my favorite tips for decorating with antiques in your home to get the perfect vintage vibes – I hope they inspire you to try incorporating a few pieces in your home decor!

Tips for Decorating with Antiques

1. Start Small and Simple

So you want to start decorating with antiques but don’t know where to start? The answer is easy – start small and simple! I recommend finding one or two pieces that really speak to you or have a cool story behind them and incorporating them into the home decor you already have.

For this tiered tray, I knew I wanted to do a lemon theme because I already had a ton of cute lemon decor on hand, but I wanted to add a vintage touch. I found this gorgeous stamped vintage book stack from Aged Pages and Things and knew it was the perfect addition. Vintage books are great for tiered trays, bookshelves, and so much more! Plus I love that they are easy to find at thrift stores or garage sales and they are budget-friendly making them a great item to start decorating with antiques. If you’re looking for other budget-friendly ways to decorate your home check out this post!

2. Dust Off Those Antique Family Heirlooms

Before you head out to purchase some antiques to use in your home decor, check your attic or ask your family members if there are any family heirlooms lying around that you could have! I’ve been able to snag things like vintage lace linens, silverware, small trinket dishes, art, clocks, and so much more. Pieces I’ve gotten from family members usually end up being my favorites because they remind me of an old memory or of someone I care about.

Using heirlooms for antique decor can also help you save a little cash when decorating! One of my top tips is not to limit yourself to items that naturally seem like decor. Here are some examples of my favorite heirlooms to use as home decor:

  • Antique Brooches – Collect a few and put them in a shadow box for unique wall decor
  • Trinket Dishes
  • Tools – Vintage tools are great for displaying on shelves or even hung up as part of a gallery wall
  • Vintage Spoons
  • Old Books
  • Pocket Watches
  • Dishes and glassware

The possibilities are endless when it comes to decorating with antiques and its one of my favorite ways to showcase my favorite family heirlooms!

3. Create Vintage Decor Vignettes

Vignettes are an easy way to get started decorating with antiques! A vignette is a group of items that are similar or go together which makes them perfect for displaying collectibles. This vignette is a styled grouping of a few of my favorite vintage finds! I’ve chosen to mix in a few antiques with some of the modern decor I already had on hand. The vintage pieces in this vignette are the coffee tin, swan trinket dish, and wooden dough bowl.

While they aren’t a grouping of similar pieces, they do all go together and create a fun vintage vibe! If you aren’t comfortable styling vignettes with a variety of pieces, using multiples of the same vintage item can be a great place to start! Try picking an item that you have a collection of like these old cameras and displaying them on a bookshelf or in a cabinet. Not only do they create a cool vintage vignette, but they’ll be great conversation pieces when you have guests.

4. Embrace the Imperfections

Two pitchers, one blue and one mostly white chippy paint with blue showing underneath. Red tin between them. All antiques

Let’s face it, antiques are OLD! That means they may not be in perfect condition, but I think a little wear and tear adds character to a piece. These vintage pitchers have rust spots and paint chips, but those little imperfections help tell their story and make each piece unique. There are definitely certain collectible items that are better to have if they are in pristine condition, especially for resale, but for pieces like these that are only going to be used for decor I say embrace the imperfections!

When decorating with antiques don’t be afraid to pick something up that’s got a bit of grime or gunk on it because most of the time there’s a way to clean it up and restore it’s vintage beauty. This is especially true for silver or glass pieces as most of the time, they just need a good polish to return them to their former glory so don’t overlook a piece with a little dirt!

You also have the option of making over a piece with a fresh coat of paint for a new look, especially if it has great bones. This is a great way to bring antique furniture back to life but can also be used to refresh old books, frames, trinkets, and so much more!

Final Thoughts on Tips For Decorating with Antiques

There is no doubt that decorating with antiques can be intimidating at first, but it doesn’t have to be! I hope these tips will help you find pieces that speak to you, create vintage vignettes, pull out your family heirlooms, and embrace the imperfections that make antiques what they are. Don’t forget that you can start small and simple until you get the hang of styling your vintage finds, but most of all have fun with it and create something in your home that you love to look at every day!

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  1. I find it amazing that antiques can give your home a new life because of their unique aesthetic. My friend is looking for gifts to give his future in-laws when he decides to pay them a visit. Maybe we should check out a gift store that sells antiques as a start.

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