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Something old, something new

All Areas > Homes & Gardens > Interior Design

Author: Gill Greenwell, Posted: Wednesday, 26th August 2020, 08:00

Image: Annie Sloan Image: Annie Sloan

Since lockdown, it feels like there is a greater emphasis on our relationship with the environment. Sustainability in interior design often means using vintage or pre-loved items in our homes.

A mix of old and new furniture creates a stylish and eclectic look, but it’s important to get the balance right – too much old and your home starts to look like your granny’s house, too much new and it feels like a hotel.

It’s key to get the right mix. Here are my tips to help you add a touch of style to your living space, and do your bit for the environment too.

Adding character
Whether you have an old desk or chair you’re lucky enough to have inherited, or something you’ve picked up in a charity shop, a vintage piece brings character to any room. I particularly like vintage mid-century furniture mixed with modern Scandi inspired interiors.

It’s key to avoid a cluttered museum look – only keep the things you like, and mix with contemporary pieces. I love an antique writing desk we inherited from my mother-in-law, which I’ve paired with a modern black bentwood chair and a faux cheetah seat for a contemporary look.

Grab yourself a bargain
You can pick up vintage tables, chairs, lamps and pictures at inexpensive prices if you are prepared to put the time in. Get up early and go to flea markets, hit the second hand shops or your local charity furniture store, and find out about local furniture auctions.

You can place your bids online but it’s more fun to go in person. Or you can just relax on your sofa at home, hunt around eBay and follow the designer’s go-to store @vinterioruk on Instagram.

Be creative with upcycling
The lockdown trend for upcycling old pieces has led to an increase in Insta-upcyclers. Annie Sloan, the original inventor of chalk paint, has lots of practical makeover ideas you can check out on @anniesloanhome.

I found some bargain 1970s varnished wood fold-up chairs and repainted them in a soft grey. With the addition of home-made seat cushions, my daughter now has a new set of dining chairs! A friend painted her cherished traditional oak dresser in a deep charcoal grey – it’s now the centrepiece of her ultra-modern kitchen/
dining/living space.

Inject a contemporary feel with recycled objects
If you are keen to add a modern feel to a traditional home and care about the planet, think about investing in items made from recycled materials. Recycled glass always looks stylish for lamp bases, or look out for storage trugs made from recycled tyres for a modern industrial vibe.

Something to please you
Your possessions tell your story – keep around you the things that hold special memories for you and have travelled with you through your life. Your well-loved and pre-loved pieces will turn your house into a home.

Other Images

Image: Baileys

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