9 Items Designers Seek Out at Antique Shops
Get the inside scoop about what items interior designers scoop up at thrift stores and antique shops.
Ornate Mirrors & Frames
Vintage mirrors with ornate details are a no-brainer for designers. They are an instant source of texture and pattern, and bring character to a space.
For a white kitchen or neutral-colored space, colorful Persian rugs are a perfect addition. Not only does the color pop against the neutral backdrop of the room, Persian rugs add much-needed texture, warmth and character.
Furniture With Character
Simple and well-made pieces of furniture that show a bit of character are a gold mine for designers. Simply look for pieces that catch your eye! Focus on what you like rather than what is trending at the moment. The end result will be a unique and statement-making space that you truly love.
Pieces That Personalize Your Space
The ultimate goal of a homeowner is to create an inspiring abode that accurately reflects the lives and loves of the people who live there. One way of doing that is by finding antique pieces with a history that speaks to you. Whether it’s the style, era, origin, or the location you found the piece, the ability to pinpoint a sentimental characteristic brings additional value to the piece and personalizes your find.
Pieces That Tell A Story
Designers also look for antique pieces that are mixable with modern decor so that they are suitable for a contemporary space as well as a traditional one. The addition of small antique pieces in a mostly modern room helps round out the story of the space, as well as provides layers and depth. The feeling of history they provide are not something easily articulated, but are definitely felt and appreciated.
Also easily paired with more modern elements, benches are a great way to inject a little history, balance and character to a space. It’s all about getting the mix right — old and new, high and low, simple and bold. A stately wood bench is a strong statement, yet can be inviting and usable.
Pieces That Show Versatility
Hunting for one-of-a-kind treasures is great, but the tricky part comes when we bring our discovery home and try to find the perfect spot for it. Finding adaptable pieces that could be suitable for a variety of uses or items with multiple functions is a great strategy for avoiding the dreaded “where am I going to put this” dilemma.
Brackets, trim pieces, ornate framing and pedestals are often found when older homes are demolished. The aged, imperfect aesthetic, along with their scale and bold presence make them great additions to homes, even those that are brand new. They impart texture, character and a huge dose of charm without spending big bucks.
Just like modern furniture, the first thing you should look for in an antique piece is quality craftsmanship. Walk away from any item, even if it’s beautiful, if it is poorly constructed. Inspect all hinges, bolts and other joints to make sure they are secure; gauge the quality and weight of the materials used; and don’t be afraid to ask questions about the history and time period of the piece. Be sure the item will be able to handle the role you are choosing it for. For instance, if a dining room credenza will be holding dishes and other breakables, it must be sturdy enough to carry the weight.