10 Surprising Ways to Decorate With Vintage Wall Art
Add some character to your walls by incorporating charming botanical prints, posters, maps, and more. Here are 10 ideas to get you started decorating with vintage wall art.
Whether your vintage art is a priceless heirloom, or was found at a flea market, thrift store or antique shop, it makes a classic addition to your decor. Landscapes, extravagantly framed portraits, and retro prints and posters all suggest a sense of history and open up an opportunity to highlight your distinctive personality. While you can find a lot of antique art ready to hang, there are also loads of creative ways to turn your estate sale finds into eye-catching art. Use these ideas to create your own unique display.
1. Vintage Botanical Art
Take a cue from Mother Nature and put together a selection of vintage art with a botanical theme for a gallery wall exhibit. To begin, curate an assortment of paintings and prints depicting leaves, flowers and other natural elements. Frame real dried leaves and pressed flowers to fill out the display. Locate a stretch of bare wall to arrange your vintage art, such as above the living room couch or over the headboard in your bedroom.
2. Open Shelving Display
Highlight special dishware by putting up little paintings behind the stacks of plates and bowls on your open kitchen shelves. For further emphasis, consider picking vintage artwork that will stand out against your kitchen color palette.
3. Stairway Gallery
Line your staircase with a grouping of eclectic paintings for an eye-catching gallery wall. Mismatched frames are a way to maintain a more rustic aesthetic, while choosing a similar style of art will keep things cohesive. Consistency is also created by sticking to a certain theme throughout an arrangement, such as horses or farm scenes.
4. Color-Blocked Art
A fresh coat of paint gives flea market prints new life. Simply apply painters tape to shield parts of the picture and frame, then spray paint with a color you love. Experiment with different colors and angles, then group a few together for a striking display of vintage art.
5. Oversized Prints
Giant-sized artwork is a tough one to incorporate into a space without it being overpowering. One way to display large art is to allow it to be the focal point of the room, but use other accessories, like lighting or a piece of furniture, to help deflect from its dominance.
6. Grid Gallery Display
Gallery wall displays can sometimes come off looking cluttered or disorganized. The solution? Create a grid of same-size prints for a crisp, tidy look. This method will use a bit of math, so be prepared with a measuring tape. Then it’s just a matter of finding the center of the wall and hanging the pieces of art at equidistant points. The size of the grid will depend on the size of the art and the available wall space. For example, a four-by-four grid is a great option for a large, square-shaped wall.
7. Vintage Photos
Looking to add a glam touch to your space? Large black-and-white fashion photography is a nice option. An asymmetrical arrangement against a dark backdrop will make the images pop. Use table lamps, throw pillows, or other pieces of art to accessorize the prints and inject hints of color.
8. Vibrant Poster Art
Use framed vintage posters to add color and character to an otherwise neutral space. A common theme, such as U.S. travel pieces, will pull the arrangement together into a cohesive display. The repeating concept throughout the pieces unites them, even if the color schemes are different.
9. Framed Maps
An oversized vintage map placed on a mantel is an effective way to bring color to a neutral room. Personalize it by highlighting a specific area of the map. The piece can then serve as both decor and a travel memento.
10. Unconventional Frames
Vintage art doesn’t have to be displayed in traditional frames. In fact, it’s way more fun to find unexpected ways to showcase the art. One example is to pull botanical prints from a vintage gardening book and to frame them using a salvaged multi-pane window frame. But don’t stop there! Consider finding other flea market treasures, like a classic typewriter, alarm clock and tarnished metal lamp, to create a charming old-time exhibit.