Thursday, October 23, 2014

Antiques: Why You Should Love Them

The thought of antiques can conjure up images of big, dusty, and suffocatingly BROWN furniture crowding up a small room. Surely, we have all wound our way through antique shops that would challenge even the most maze-practiced mouse. Or, we have been to homes much like the idea described above...where brown furniture, faded fabrics, dusty lamp shades and the smell of musk is at every turn. Additionally, so many modern day furniture makers style their new pieces after antique pieces, which very rarely seems to work out for the better.

How Now Brown Couch. AKA: How Not To Do Antiques 
(or Antique Styled Furniture)

Here's the thing: most antiques ARE brown, have faded fabric, scrapes and scratches and dings. The ones that don't have these problems are the ones that can be as expensive as a new home. But the magic of antiques is that so many have good bones to begin with, and just need a vision and some TLC to bring them up to their grandeur. The beauty of this, too, is that you can tailor a piece to just about any and every style you may desire. Or, if you are not the hands-on type, with some patience you can find the perfect piece for any room and any style.

Don't believe me? Look at how beautiful an
ultra-modern chair pairs with this petite antique desk.

From dumpy to dreamy, this plain little chair was given 
a whole new life with some professional 
re-upholstery and restoration. 

Or, you can try your hand with some DIY like I did
with white wash and gilt paint. 

Oh, and another thing? Antiques are antiques for a reason. Meaning that they have been around for a LONG time. Generations, sometimes. This equals sturdy, well-built pieces of furniture that will stand the test of time (this is also important because these are styles that have spanned back over a hundred years and can still look good - the true definition of a "classic"). Oftentimes furniture is overlooked in this regard. But it's like buying a designer pair of shoes over something at the big box store. Or a great vintage coat that you KNOW you won't find anywhere else. Maybe it needs to be stitched up or fixed here and there, but with a little elbow grease it can be brought back from the dead.

There is a great deal of craftsmanship put into these pieces that deserves to be shown off. And you can, almost always, refresh these pieces as you (and your personal style) transform over time. Paint can be stripped, fabric can be changed, and you will always have the great bones of the piece to work with.

Or keep it neutral to easily refresh with
new color through accessories.

Lastly is the common misconception that antiques add only an element of femininity. While it is true that many antiques wear dreamy, soft looks with ease, they can also be incorporated into a more masculine space...adding interest with their unique lines and textures.

Come on guys, I KNOW this room makes you
want to dawn a smoking jacket
 and a glass of brandy.

So...what are you waiting for? Because there are tons of antique furniture pieces out there waiting for your vision and a room to call home.