Everyone has a Design Style. It may be a mixture of a couple of different styles but there is definitely a style represented. When a room is only one design style it can feel boring and kind of flat. Mixing styles can offer several layers and give the room more interest and a polished more engaging feel.
I would say my style is eclectic and leans toward industrial. I love glass, metals, and wood. I think the reason I like the industrial style so much is because I can mix old and new things with those elements and it will all still look fantastic. That’s where the eclectic part comes in. I like having pieces of the past represented in my right now. Mixing unexpected patterns and combining unassuming textures and pieces can be a challenge, but it can also be amazing.
Our rooms should tell a story. A story of who, what, when, where, and why. Stories of those who have come before us. I have a beautiful buffet that was my great-grandparent’s. I currently have my tv sitting on that buffet in my living room.
I remember holidays at my great-grandparent’s house when I was a kid, all the food was displayed on that buffet. I remember being too short to see over the top well and reaching around on my tippy toes in search of black olives to put on my fingers. I remember the smell of the ham, crushed ice in my glass of Coca-Cola, my cousin’s laugh, my Great-Aunt’s hugs…all that from just looking at an old buffet. These are the stories that make the house we live in a home.
I’m a plate collector. In particular I collect souvenir plates from each state, Fiesta ware, and white lace plates. Thanks to my Uncle Scott, who is a master garage and estate sale hitter, I have a pretty sweet collection.
I’m a fan of displaying plates on the walls in different shapes and patterns. They can create movement and exhibit something interesting other than a painting or a mirror. I remember hanging a set of white plates in a snowflake pattern on a large wall and thinking about all the meals those plates have seen.
Some of those plates didn’t originate in my family so I was imagining the families that used them before me and what they were using them for. Oh, the meals those plates have seen! And then I just got hungry and started jonesing for chocolate cake.
My point in sharing these stories is sheerly to convey how amazing it is that a simple décor item can retrieve memories from deep down or ignite the imagination in such a big way. That’s what I’m trying to create in my home by mixing older items with newer ones. For anytime there is an old piece that can be salvaged for an updated room, it should be. I get it, sometimes it’s more cost effective to buy a newer model but using existing furnishings in new design adds character and history.
Besides the character and history that goes along with mixing old and new items, I have to say another major draw for me is that I can use my imagination and creativity in a big way. I can bring my personality to the room and I don’t feel stifled by rules. Mixing old and new is a style anyone can truly let go and have some fun with and for that, I am a huge fan!
Things to do to make old things new again
Paint old pieces of furniture, add new fabric to chairs or couches, add a new lampshade to an old lamp, paint an old light fixture and add a more modern bulb if they’re exposed, change knobs and pulls on cabinets or other pieces of furniture.
Ways to mix old and new:
Adding new lamps, to an old buffet or console table, with a new rug in front or under, and some modern art above, layering old dishes with new ones when setting a table, adding new bedding to an old bed, framing old prints with new frames and vice versa…so many possibilities.