Vintage Details for Modern Homes

by Kelly Roth 11/08/2020

Photo by Alex Qian from Pexels


Whether you’re remodeling your home or building one from scratch there are a few vintage features you may want to incorporate. No matter the style of your home—modern, traditional, country chic—these additions can fit seamlessly in your house. Work with your architect to see how you can add these details to your design plan. 

Functional —

Laundry Shoot: In a multi-story home a laundry shoot is a great built-in tool, especially for larger households. Without taking up too much space in the walls you can place a shoot upstairs that sends clothes right into a basket in the laundry room. Need to access from multiple stories? No problem, you can add access doors on each floor.

Phone Nook: A phone nook, or niche, historically housed a phone on a ledge or a wall-mounted phone. In a modern house, you can add a nook in any room. Include electricity and plenty of plugs so it can function as a charging station for smartphones, tablets and computers.

Aesthetic —

Ceiling Medallions & Tin Tiles: Medallions and tiles are gorgeous installations that add interest to ceilings. A medallion above an entryway light or dining room chandelier creates drama in an unexpected location. Medallions can match your ceiling color but are also available in gold leaf, bronze or even walnut finish. Tin tiles also come in many styles and colors. They look great on the ceiling but they also make a unique kitchen or bathroom backsplash.

Wood Paneling: Wood paneling doesn’t have to feel dark and dated. You can use all types of wood to fit with the style of your home. Paneling is often installed to cover a full wall but it can also be added as wainscoting. Consider using wood paneling to create geometric wall patterns like lattice and grids.

Both! —

Dutch Door: Dutch doors aren’t just for homes with farmhouse style architecture. These beautiful doors are functional as well. Open just the top half for great airflow during nice weather, without letting the dog or littles ones out!

Stained Glass Transom Window: Transom windows are a feature seen mainly in vintage homes. But why? These windows add an artistic touch while being functional. You can find stained glass designs that fit with any style, even modern industrial, or have a custom design created for your home. Select transom windows that open so that they work in conjunction with your home cooling system to allow rising hot air to circulate.

Pocket Doors and Shutters: Doors and shutters that slide into the wall or fold into a nook are extremely functional and aesthetically pleasing. Storing doors and shutters in the wall allows you keep wall areas open for decor while conserving floor space and creating additional options for furniture placement. 

Picture Rail Moulding: Moulding with a curved top that holds picture hooks, or an open bottom where you can attach holders is a great way to be able to move art around, hanging it from wire at different lengths and easily place it. The moulding is a nice and subtle décor feature in itself. 

When designing your home, add in all the new features we love today but don’t forget to consider some design features of the past that can really enhance your living space.

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Kelly Roth

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