How to “vintage” up your home

How to “vintage” up your home

How to “vintage” up your home

Do the words Fixer Upper mean anything to you? How ’bout shiplap. Magnolia. Waco. Or better yet, JOANNA GAINES. If you’re anything like the millions of other people in the world who have fallen in love with HGTV’s Chip & Joanna Gaines, this post is for you.

Joanna Gaines may just be the single most influential person in today’s vintage decor craze. From remodeling old, run-down homes, to decorating with antiques and flea market finds, to incorporating neutral colors and “old” with “new,” she makes drop-dead gorgeous design look easy.

landscape-1445624420-magnolacollageSource: Country Living


Then there’s me. I’ve always been a fan of all-things flea market, but I don’t necessarily incorporate it in my home. Not much, anyway. Occasionally, I buy a piece or two with the intention to someday find “the” spot for it, but more often, it finds its final resting place in my basement. Why? Because my style isn’t particularly neutral or vintage. I tend to be bright, modern and bold. But, like everything else, style is always evolving.

Just recently, I bought the BEST and CHEAPEST vintage crates that I’m DYING to find a place for. I also scored an old vintage sign, and I can’t wait until it’s ready to hang. I’m in the process of cleaning and sealing them. Post coming soon 🙂

So before I reveal my own vintage vignettes, I thought it the perfect time to share my best advice, and some image inspo, for dipping your toe into vintage design.


Keep an open mind.

The reason you maybe haven’t been decorating with vintage pieces up to this point is because it’s “unnatural” for you. A tad out of your comfort zone. Embrace that feeling because great things can come from it. Start at your local thrift stores, antique shops and flea markets. No, not Home Goods. And no, not Target. If you’re like me, those are too easy. Branch out. Trust me, you’ll be happy you did.


Start small.

One or two vintage items that you LOVE can go a long way, especially if your current home is far from vintage. So start by searching for just a few pieces that you love, and live with them in your house for a while. Once you get the hang of where to place them, and how to decorate with, or around them, then you can for the gold and splurge on the bigger finds. Like furniture!!

These pics are perfect examples of starting small. Vintage kitchen items, a worn container and my personal favorite, a crate.


Blog: The Cottage Market

Screen Shot 2016-06-06 at 11.36.49 AM

Source: Liz Marie Blog

When in doubt, buy a CRATE.

I don’t know about you, but I’m kind of obsessed with vintage crates. In my opinion, they are one of the easiest, coolest ways to start vintage-ing up your home. There are so many ideas out there for ways to style them that you can’t go wrong. Try using one as storage for throw blankets, decorative pillows or even your familys’ rain boots. Better yet, get creative by layering a few together, along with some great greenery, maybe some vintage books, mason jars, whatever. The options are never-ending.


Blog: The Cottage Market


Blog: Flea Chic

Screen Shot 2016-06-07 at 10.53.47 AM

Blog: Rooms For Rent

Trial and error.

Adding new pieces, especially if they’re out of your design comfort zone can be daunting, but don’t let that stop you from trying. Try a vintage vase as part of your kitchen island decor. Live with it for a few days, and if you’re not “feeling” it after that, switch it up. Bottom line: You won’t know if you like something, until you try. And I always believe that failing is a big part of succeeding.


Get creative. 

Decorating with vintage books (you never intend on actually reading). A weathered bicycle as garden art. An old crate turned spice rack. Anything kitchen-related: rolling pins, cutting boards, vases, jars. Use your imagination when you’re contemplating what to buy. Especially if you hit up a popular flea market, sometimes the plethora of options can be overwhelming. And very often, you may not even know what you’re looking at. But take to Pinterest to find inspo, and never EVER take an item at face value. A vintage dresser, as an example, could be great in a bathroom, while an old milk crate could work as an organizer in a craft room.

This weathered piece of furniture, repurposed for a bathroom, is the perfect example of creativity in design.

vintage furniture bathroom 7

Source: Apartment Therapy

You might not realize the value of a crate like the one below, but after you see this use, now you will. This designer hung it on the wall and converted it into a spice rack. Brilliant!


Blog: Flea Chic

Family first. 

Nothing says vintage like actual vintage. Ask your mother or your grandmother, or your aunts, uncles, cousins and friends if there is anything “old” that they’d like to part with. Your grandfather’s old toolbox? Your mom’s “rustic” watering can? A wheel barrow that’s been collecting dust in your Great Aunt’s garage? Turn to your family before you turn to antiquing, thrifting and junking. Just ask Joanna. I LOVE this toolbox as an adorable spot for plants.


HGTV: Joanna herself

Don’t go crazy.

There’s a difference between a vintage find, and a piece of junk. Now granted, one man’s trash is another man’s treasure, for sure, BUT (and this is a big BUT), some trash is still… trash. Where to draw the line is an individual choice, and I am certainly no expert on it. But keep this in mind when you’re out scouring.


Have fun!

These last shots are for pure enjoyment purposes only. Check out the old door in this home office. And the great vintage containers Joanna turned into a sweet spot for plants and herbs. Of course she did. Because she’s Joanna 🙂


Blog: Love Grows Wild


BP_HFXUP303H_dining-room_detail_decor_wall-display_194792_647407-1196041.jpg.rend.hgtvcom.616.822HGTV: Joanna herself

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Morgan Hanson

360-degrees of DIY-bliss. Read about my kooky ideas, creations, kids and general chaotically beautiful life. Get inspired. Learn from my mistakes. Steal my ideas. Be merry :)
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