Vintage Decor Defined


When it comes to home decor, everything can be charted on a historical timeline with labels like contemporary, antique, vintage or retro.  However since nothing is ever certified with a date, the actual period of a piece can often be open to interpretation.  Add to that confusion about what these terms mean and creating a vintage inspired space, can become a real challenge.

According to Merriam-Webster, the term vintage relates primarily to wine and is the modified form of the French word vendage, meaning “the grapes picked during a season.” Perhaps a more helpful explanation comes from Ruby Lane, noting that “an item described as ‘vintage’ should speak of the era in which it was produced. Vintage can mean an item is of a certain period of time, as in “vintage 1950’s” but it can also mean (and probably always should) that the item exhibits the best of a certain quality, or qualities, associated with or belonging to that specific era. In other words, for the term vintage to accurately apply to it, an item should be somewhat representational and recognizable as belonging to the era in which it was made.” Ruby Lane also suggests that ‘vintage’ should not be used in reference to objects less than 20 years old.

So now that we know what vintage means, how do you create a vintage look in a space without it looking like a flea market?

Start by having a designated spot and theme for your finds.  Vintage plates are a great way to add a vintage element to space, for easy instruction on how to hang plates on a wall, click here.  A bookshelf or cabinet is a great place to create and display a collection.  By keeping the theme (specific items, colours, time period, etc) in mind when hunting, you’ll save yourself from collecting too many unnecessary trinkets.




(Source: Better Homes and Gardens)

One of my favorite vintage items to collect is books.  I love everything about them, the worn pages, the smell, and thinking about bookshelves they’ve lived on over the years.  Vintage books are a great way to add a hint of history to space, without having to overly commit.  They instantly add texture and richness to space.  I absolutely love how they’ve been displayed on an otherwise modern mantle below.



Vintage dinnerware and serve ware is an easy way to add a touch of vintage to your home, once again without any major commitment.  Vintage lighting is also a great way to add interest to space.  What I love about vintage lighting, is that it can be easily and inexpensively modified with a quick coat of paint to fit into any colour scheme.


(Source: Pinterest)
vintage4 (Source: Better Homes and Gardens)

Don’t be afraid to think outside of the box when sourcing.  A vintage dresser can be used in the living room for storage or as a console for your television.  And a gorgeous vintage secretary makes for a fabulous home bar.


(Source: Domino)


(Source: Lonny)

Found an amazing vintage piece, but not sure how to tie into your current look? Painting it the same color as the wall is a great way to help it blend in with the rest of the space.


(Source: Domino)

What are your favorite ways to incorporate vintage decor elements into your space?  I’d love to know! Please feel free to share in the comments below.

Avatar About Neelam Gurm

Neelam is a living well enthusiast, world traveler, and lover of all things design.

With a keen eye for decor, Neelam brings a unique and creative approach to all her projects. Nothing excites her more than bridging the right design with personal style to create spaces that are warm, inviting, and layered with details of our story.

When not creating beautiful spaces, you’ll find Neelam in the kitchen or seeking an incredible food experience out on the town. Gathering with those she loves to share good, wholesome food is one of her greatest joys.

When it comes to soul food, for Neelam that is travel. Off the beaten path, adventurous and always an opportunity for discovery and growth.

Neelam created Patterns and Prosecco as place to share her loves and to document her own creative journey to live life to it’s fullest, with unbridled joy, and an insatiable curiosity. Her hope is to excite her readers to create an inspired lifestyle of their own.

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