Modern Trends: Turning Vintage Furniture into Modern Furniture

What’s old is new again. These days, there is no shortage of rustic, shabby-chic décor to be found at any mass-market showroom. Country-inspired signs to hang on walls, rough-hewn wood furniture, and ceramic dishes that wouldn’t look out of place in your grandmother’s kitchen are all suddenly making their way into the mainstream again, found everywhere from apartments in Brooklyn to the streets of suburbia. But how do you make vintage furniture fit into your otherwise modern décor? And where do you get started if you don’t have any particular style selections from yesteryear? Here are a few tips for turning vintage furniture into modern furniture: Upcycle, upcycle, upcycle. You may be leery of picking up furniture from the side of the road, but don’t let the threat of bedbugs stop you! There are plenty of other places you can score furniture for a steal and turn it into something new again. Hit flea markets and estate sales to see what you can score. Thrift stores are also good places to seek out treasure so you can repurpose it. Once you have your one-of-a-kind item, make it new again! Sand it down and repaint in a vibrant, modern shade. Replace old brass or metal knobs with bright, modern pieces in chrome or glass. Breathe life into a well-loved piece by offering it a refresher. Mix textures and shapes. Seek out wood, metal, and other quality textures of the past. Mixing quality vintage pieces with your modern textures, even plastic, can help make a space seem more fresh. If a piece is too heavy or old-fashioned to seem salvageable, get creative! Mix textures and shapes right on the furniture’s surface. Old chairs can be reupholstered in modern fabrics, like a  deep leather or cow’s hide print. Added grommets and other tacking to the arms of chairs or couches can also give an old piece a modern update. Even order pieces such as mirrors and chandeliers can be made to look more modern by adding applique to the frame or swapping out hanging wire to something that fits your modern style; Think outside the box. It can be easy to categorize furniture by room or by purpose. But what if you let all of that go and just thought about form over function? Sure, you need a place to store your clothing, but dressers can live a vibrant life in several rooms of your home! Many millennial have already inherited quality furniture from their grandparents. Refresh the dresser, for example, with new hardware and drawer lining – or even a coat of paint – and make it into a buffet for your dining area. It could also serve as a TV stand, or a changing table in a baby’s room. Another piece that is incredibly versatile – a trunk. Something that lived at the foot of many a bed could also be of service in a living room, guest bedroom, garage, or even outdoors. Painting a vintage trunk a bright, modern color is one great way to liven up any space! Even old-fashioned picture frames can have décor and anything from feathers to beads added on for a modern effect that plays off of the piece’s history. No matter what vintage piece you find, there is a way to make it modern!