9 Interesting Ways to Decorate with Vintage Art
Use these clever ideas to transform the walls of your home with the help of vintage art, like botanical prints, posters and world maps.
The first step to giving your home a retro update is locating vintage art to use on your walls. Look to places like antique shops, flea markets, thrift stores or go through your own family treasures in the attic or basement. While you may find antique pieces ready to hang, it may be left to you to turn vintage finds into art. In most cases, it’s as simple as matting and framing an eye-catching image. Here are some ideas to get you started:
Find inspiration in the outdoors by putting together an assortment of vintage botanical-themed art for a gallery wall. To begin, assemble a collection of paintings and prints of leaves, flowers and other natural objects. Then, add some variety to the display by framing some real pressed flowers and dried leaves. Vintage botanicals make a great theme for a bedroom, office or sunroom.
2. Kitchen-Appropriate Art
If you have a farmhouse-style kitchen, then vintage art is ideal wall decor for you. Use vintage images to create sharp contrast against glossy subway tiles, or highlight the rustic style of bracketed wood shelves with shiny metal frames. Tip: Use self-adhesive picture hanging strips to hang art on tiles without inflicting any damage.
3. Open Shelving Display
Turn your dishware into showpieces by hanging small vintage paintings behind the stacks of plates and bowls on open shelving. To make an even bigger statement, pick vintage art with hues that pop against your kitchen’s existing color scheme. Another approach is to use floral prints in mismatched frames, which is an excellent way to bring much-needed character and texture to an otherwise bland all-white kitchen.
4. Stairway Gallery Wall
Give your staircase an eclectic look by lining it with vintage paintings of a certain theme, like nature. Mismatched frames? No worries. They work together to keep the look rustic.However, a similar paint style can maintain cohesiveness. For a larger collection, recurring themes throughout the display can also contribute to a consistent look.
5. Grid Display
If you’re worried that a gallery wall will end up looking cluttered or in disarray, consider hanging your art in a grid pattern, such as four-by-four same-size prints. Keep in mind that to employ this look, a little math is involved. Use a measuring tape to locate the center of the wall, and then arrange the art at equal distances from one another.
6. Photo Prints
Bring a touch of glamour to any space with large black-and-white fashion photographs. To make the photos pop, consider hanging them in an asymmetrical arrangement on picture ledges against a dark-colored wall. Use accessories to bring color to the prints, such as throw pillows, table lamps or other decorative objects.
7. Colorful Posters
Framed vintage posters full of color can bring personality and life to an otherwise neutral room. To make the arrangement more cohesive, try finding art with a common theme, like military recruitment pieces or travel posters. That way, the repeating motif will make sense of the pieces even if the color palettes are different.
8. Framed Maps
Prop a large vintage map on a mantel to bring subtle color to a neutral room. To add a personal touch, try highlighting a specific country or region on the map. The piece will then serve as decor as well as a memento of a special place and time.
9. Rustic Framing
Go beyond traditional frames and get creative with displaying your vintage art. For example, try showcasing some simple floral prints (perhaps ripped from an old gardening book) by mounting them in a salvaged window frame with multiple panes. Accessorize with other vintage finds like a typewriter, well-worn lamp and wind-up clock.