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Decorative Objects

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The Holy Grail of interior style setters everywhere is the elusive “vignette." This collection of seemingly random vintage objects placed on a table, console or mantel does the (cast iron? ceramic?) lion’s share of taking a room from serviceable to chic. Take said lion, add a vintage book, a used globe, a tiny obelisk (now’s not the time to be a minimalist), and whatever suits your fancy. Now you’re playing with the big kids.

How to Style Your Home with Vintage Decorative Objects

Wondering how to make a house into a home? Try scattering vintage decorative objects throughout each room. The process is not as simple as it sounds though, as the choice of vintage decorative objects can easily make or break a space’s cohesion. Color and shape are also very important factors. Continue reading to learn how to style each room by simply adding a few used decorative objects to each space.

Baskets and Boxes: Trinket boxes, jewelry boxes, waste paper baskets—when it comes to baskets, the plethora of choices can easily intimidate. Yet baskets and boxes are an ideal way to not only add personality to a space, but to provide organization.

When using baskets as vintage decorative objects, look for textural pieces. Wicker and braided rope accents can add a bohemian feel to any room, while antique baskets and boxes made of wood are a special find for any secondhand shopper. Wicker and wooden baskets and boxes alike typically come in a natural color, bringing warmth to the room. Ornate brass and metal boxes are used to display beautifully intricate carvings that are a true testament to their history. Vintage porcelain boxes are truly stunning, as they are typically ordained with colorful designs, perfect for adding a splash of color to a space.

Hooks and Coat Racks: Generally made from a type of metal, hooks are vintage decorative items that serve both a practical and fun purpose in the home. They can be used to hang just about anything, from coats in the entryway to aprons in the kitchen to towels in the bathroom. Some examples of fun and unique hooks are those shapes like brass pineapples, bows, seashells or trees. Alternatively, there are always ram horns hooks if a novelty hook wouldn’t fit well in the space.

Clocks: Nothing adds history to a space like a vintage clock. The ultimate in secondhand decorative accessories, wall clocks and table clocks can be both large and small, ranging from wooden to metal. Metal clocks lean towards a vintage, rustic style while wooden clocks give a more antique feeling to a room. Grandmother or grandfather clocks are showstoppers in any space, as they are stately in their stature and design. Their chimes echo throughout the home. Mantel clocks are the perfect showpiece to accent any fireplace.

Fireplace Accessories: A Parisian or wrought iron fireplace screen is a used decorative object that can add elegance and history to any design. Try adding a pair of coordinating andirons to complete the look. For the holiday season, adorn the antique mantel with vintage, handmade stockings hung from metal stocking holders.

Picture Frames: Picture frames are among the most unique vintage decorative objects that can be added to a home, as they come in so many shapes, sizes and styles. Try to create a collage wall by mixing ornate, metal frames with rich, wooden frames of all shapes and sizes for a truly unique and personalized look. To take it a step further, mix black and white and sepia photos with color photos in the frames.

Screens: Decorative screens are more than simply boudoir pieces. They can be a lovey accent piece to separate a large room or just to add character to any space. Some are adorned with ornate carvings, mirrors or antique, hand painted scenes, while others are more simple and transparent.

Vases: Accent a bar table with a brightly colored, glass vase, or choose more of a neutral, ceramic for a rustic vibe. When it comes time to choose the perfect vase for the space, consider the size table it will sit on, as vases come in an array of shapes and sizes. Also, consider what the vase will hold, whether it is bright flowers, elegant roses or neutral sticks.

Candle Holders: Candles come in many different sizes, so it would only make sense that there’s a huge variety of candle holders available. From the long and skinny taper candle to tiny tea lights, candles are a good-smelling way to add color and warmth to a home. Try adding tiered candle holders on a larger table or candle holders on the wall for a romantic design.

Wallpaper: Wallpaper is a wonderful way to add excitement and texture to any room. Add some pizazz to a space with bold wallpaper on one wall to create an accent wall, as to not overwhelm the room, or display a more muted pattern on every wall for a more elegant effect.

Garden Decorations: When decorating a home, don’t stop at just the inside, as the garden can be just as fun to design. Choose patio furnishings that mimic the overall design style of the inside of your home. You can go for a vintage, aluminum or wrought iron set or a more modern set with cushions. Add colorful flowers to a patio with ceramic planters or a planter screen, or use a hanging planter to plant herbs on a deck. Stained glass hung on windows can be just as breathtaking from the outside as it is from the inside. Complete every garden with a true showstopper: a stone water fountain would be a very good example.

Adding secondhand, unique decorations to any room will truly set any vintage-inspired room above the rest!