A new year a new style?
Yes, and no.
Of course, in the antiques world, “everything old is new again,” so what’s hot and happening is actually old and established. That’ll keep us on our toes!
But still, certain trends tick to the top and other things aren’t as hot any more and we do all we can to keep up with that so that the shop is stocked with what you’re looking for and plenty of other surprises too.
So without haste, let’s get to it.
1. Mid Century Modern
This trend isn’t going away. If anything is only getting stronger. But you should accept no substitutes, no knock-offs, and no contemporary versions of mid century looks unless they’re so high end and well-crafter that you simply can’t refuse.
But if you’re looking at mid . range items, and Ikea-like stuff, you’re far better off hitting the antique and vintage stuff for the real deal that was manufactured mid century.
Sure, you can look for key names, like Warren Platner, Eero Saarinen, Charles and Ray Eames, Florence Knoll, and others, and we strive to bring you those major designers whenever we can source them. But there’s also plenty of standard furniture manufactured mid century that has the look and the higher quality of previous generations. Yet, helpfully, this doesn’t always mean a higher cost than getting that same furniture today. IN fact sometimes you can still score a bargain.
So if you’re a Mid Century Modern lover don’t despair — it’s still hot, hot, hot for 2019 and only getting hotter!
In everything from ceramics to cabinetry to art, a touch of the Orient still spells style and grace some 250 years after it first made its splash in North America as a key design style in the 18th century.
Blues and whites, elaborate enamel work, large scale tobacco and spice jars, platters, vases, and rugs continue to feel fresh and vibrant, adding a touch of the traditional while feeling oh so au courant.
Fortunately there’s a lot of it to go around, and as little as one piece can add a distinction to your decor, table setting, or in the case of a rug, a whole room.
Keep your eyes peeled for Chinoiserie and find a way to add it to your home.
3. Eclectic Rules with Texture
Though the clean lines of mid century and the grounding of traditional looks have their appeal, they both do so most effectively when mixed and matched with contrasting styles. And one of the most powerful ways to achieve this is with texture.
In decorating with antiques texture is best found in rough surfaces like truly antique (not reproduction) primitives such as barn wood tables, old hutches, rough hewn cabinets of the late 18th and early 19th centuries.
Another powerful way to achieve an eclectic look with texture is through the smart use of textiles. Oriental rugs, hand-woven or highly detailed coverlets, superb vintage linens with hand-detailed borders, wall weavings, and repurposed antique and vintage fabrics lend an instant sense of gravitas and design punch to any room.
Finally, elements like iron, hammered copper, and basketry at scale (think large), create focal points and are instant conversation pieces so here’s one more pro tip — if you don’t have a good story about your object, make one up! It’s more fun and let’s you play the designer more dangerously. (You can always confess your little white lie if you feel guilty by explaining that a fake story is better than no story at all!)
Fantastic genres to look for here include Native American pieces/influences, early American frontier/village life household goods, farm finds, and fabrics of the late 19th-20th centuries that you can repurpose into pillows, furniture upholstery, and other accessories.
4. Art at Scale
There’s an artistic boom in America today and supporting artists by recognizing that their work speaks to our souls and so investing in it is a great way to live life purposefully!
Whether your art purchase is of a current artist or artisan working today, or is about picking up vintage modernist pieces or antique portraiture or landscapes, the operative position is to THINK BIG!
A large scale piece makes an undeniable statement in your space. In small spaces a large piece sets the tone for the whole room. In a large space, a big piece focuses the eye and allows other pieces to play off of its design, colors, shape, or placement.
And it’s not just two-dimensional wall art that I’m talking about. In home sculpture is making a huge comeback with both representational pieces and abstracts taking center stage.
If you already favor traditional looks, go for statuary or objets d’arts like horses, foxes, or pastoral human figures. If your taste is more modern, let any shape from organics to sharp clean lines define the piece you choose.
But choose you should — adding a distinctive piece of art to your home collection is sure to draw attention, spur conversation (you can talk about the artist or style), and light a fire within for more art in your collection going forward.
Thank you and Happy New Year
Thanks to all our customers and blog readers for your loyal following, your consistent business, and your warm and friendly faces in the shop. We hope you all have a wonderful holiday season and a happy, healthy, and prosperous new year!