Editor’s Miscellany: Old Becomes New

December 6, 2012

By Kyle Hoepner

Earlier this fall I moderated a panel at the Ellis Boston Antiques Show in which several New England interior designers discussed the use of antiques in their work–with a particular focus on how to catch the interest younger clients.

The idea that objects of lasting beauty can bring pleasure to many generations of owners is nothing new. Ancient Greece and Han dynasty China were already home to avid collectors of things antique, and every era since has had its coterie of cognoscenti who valued the choicest productions of times past.

Our own popular culture, however, sometimes seems to promote the unthinking assumption that living with antiques means living in your grandmother’s house. Don’t be fooled. A decorative item or piece of furniture with a sense of weight, of history, can lend added depth and texture to your living space, of no matter what style. Mixing–of high and low, then and now, near and far–is the order of the day, and a few timeless finds can make all the difference.

So here’s an assortment of rooms that have caught my eye in recent weeks, rooms that speak to me in some way through their piquant blending of yesterday with today.

Designer Darryl Carter decorates with antiques of many sorts. The result is invariably elegant, yet always spare and fresh, never stuffy.

Photos from darrylcarter.com

Vicente Wolf is always a rich source for clean, contemporary spaces that gain a bit of spice from gutsy antique (or antique-inspired) finds.

Photo from vicentewolf.com

Loft living à la Phoebe Howard.

Photo from phoebehoward.net

An entrance hall by Eric Cohler: many traditional elements, not such a traditional effect.

Photo from ericcohler.com

Antique but not old: a house in the Hamptons by James Huniford.

Photo by Pieter Estersohn from elledecor.com

Midcentury furniture takes Connecticut designer John Roch‘s house in unexpected directions.

Photo by Bruce Buck for New England Home; click to see more

Other homes combining antiques with a modern sensibility:

Always in Season

View Masters

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