Mixing modern styles with vintage finds is not a new concept; interior designers have long looked to the past for inspiration. When styled well, a certain magic happens. Maybe it evokes a sense of nostalgia, or provides a refreshing contrast to our digital, minimalist world. But there is something elegant about a vintage piece living side by side with more modern architecture. Vintage elements give a modern space character and make the room look as though you’ve been carefully curating the pieces for years. If you’re as taken with this style as we are, here are some helpful tips for creating the perfect mix of modern convenience and vintage charm.


Know Your History

Farmhouse sinks originated in 17th century Britain and Ireland, in an era with no running water. The sinks were convenient for holding large amounts of water that had been fetched by hand from nearby lakes, rivers, and wells. With this knowledge you might decide to carry the theme with a wall-mounted faucet designed to look like a well pump or to contrast the sink with a contemporary faucet. Understanding the history of each vintage piece you add will help you better tell its story in your space.


Quality Counts

Iconic pieces never go out of style. You don’t want to go broke remodeling your bathroom, but you should select the highest quality fixtures you can comfortably afford. Not only will they last far longer than cheap knock-offs or imitations, but you’ll stay true to the artisans of that bygone era who were known for using high quality materials. Search flea markets, social media and online marketplaces, and garage sales for vintage pieces (an old dresser, nightstand, or light fixture) that you can restore. If you go antiquing, head out early in the morning and bring along a tape measure!Designer furniture only gets better with age, so it’s well worth investing.


Keep it Simple

Famous Writer William Zinsser advised using the simplest language to write the first draft of a story, and then once the foundation is strong, to add colorful language to bring the story to life. The same can be said for interior design. The foundation of your space should be clean and simple. Once you have the structural elements, you can go back decide where to add personality. This will help you avoid designing a bathroom that’s more chaotic than cohesive.


Blend In

Use multiple shades of the same color to make your room look pulled together. A mix of materials and textures in the same tone will unify the entire space and allow you to choose one element as your focal point. Painting your vanity the same color as the wall it sits on, for example, will allow those antique porcelain pulls to take center stage. If you’ve invested in vintage patterned wallpaper or a retro rug, all white fixtures can provide the perfect backdrop to draw your eye.


Opposites Attract

While having a cohesive style is important, an overly coordinated or matching aesthetic won’t inspire the same emotions that an eclectic space will convey. Keep things interesting by adding a few opposing elements. Offset a space filled with wood by adding soft textures, glass or chrome. A room designed from 90-degree angles can be softened with curved light fixtures or accents.


Get Smart

Adding a vintage touch to your bathroom doesn’t mean you can’t take advantage of modern luxuries. Thanks to tech innovations, these features can be surreptitiously integrated into your room without changing the vibe. Bonus: smart products increase your home’s appeal: 81% of homebuyers say they’d prefer to purchase a home with such accessories already installed. [Read 4 Ways Smart Bathrooms Deliver.]

Some trends should stay in the past (we’re looking at you, big hair and parachute pants) but adding a bit of nostalgia to your space isn’t one of them. If you love the idea of adding a vintage vibe to your bathroom but could use some help with the overall design, our Design Consultants can help. Browse our design gallery for ideas and inspiration.


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