When it comes to antiques, a lot of people mistake them as a status symbol and try to purchase as many as they can as showpieces for their home. However, the truth is that antiques should be seen more as art pieces in the home that accent taste and class rather than wealth. If you enjoy antiques and like to decorate with them, there are some dos and don’ts that you should keep in mind.
DO buy something that you really like and enjoy looking at. If you find an item of great beauty and can afford it (of course, not all antiques have to be expensive, either), you should get it and add it to your home. Much like art, antiques are an acquired taste and a personal decision, meaning that what one individual likes may not be what you find attractive. However, just like choosing your favorite color to paint the walls in your room, it is important that you like the items that are decorating your home.
DON’T buy something because it’s valuable. Antiques can hold a lot of value, but if you don’t ever plan to resell it or to pass it on as an heirloom, it is not important to “invest” in that particular antique. Especially if you are not partial to how it looks, being either indifferent to the design or actually not liking it at all, you’ll find that owning that item only makes you angry at the money you spend every time you look at it. That is not a pleasant way to live and will not create a welcoming environment for you in your home.
DO purchase matching items and use them to accent a room. For example, if you find a particular set of chairs that you like and the style matches a framed mirror in your foyer, buy the set and place them on either side of your front door to help bring the room together.
DON’T decorate an entire room with antiques. The vision becomes overwhelming, and the value and beauty of the individual pieces are lost among a jumble of items that are visually intimidating. If you really want to collect antiques, set up your own show room in one room of the house rather than decorating with them.
DO buy faux antiques, if it is the style that you prefer. Remember, there is no need to spend outrageous amounts of money on a table that was used once by King George when he was writing a letter when you can buy a replica for one-tenth the price. Many people are not experts in antiques anyway and could never tell the difference on sight.
DON’T brag. Trust that anyone who is going to be impressed by the antiques you have acquired will either be silently impressed or will ask questions about the items they like and voice their opinions. Others who are not impressed really don’t need to hear the history behind the unit and are quite likely to become annoyed with a braggart.