Design Your Modern Vintage Bedroom with These 19 Eclectic Ideas

This article explores modern vintage bedroom ideas.

There is something so nostalgic about vintage decor. Pieces with history mixed with newer items provide the perfect amount of dimension and visual interest to a space. Every designer knows a room that speaks to one singular design era can feel flat and one-dimensional. Family heirlooms or estate sale finds are sought after in creating an eclectic vintage space. The bedroom is a great place to experiment with vintage pieces to create fresh ideas for a modern vintage bedroom.

Vintage Modern
Source: Pinterest

The secret for creating interesting spaces is to bring in pieces from several different eras and cultures. However, the key is to not go too overboard in antique design. Touches of vintage are great, but again variety within eras and styles are critical, and you do not want a space to feel like a museum.

Here are my top picks for creating a modern vintage bedroom.


1. Reupholstering Projects

DIY projects are a fun way to makeover vintage pieces and get a chic look for less. Instructional videos on projects like staining, painting or reupholstering can be found on Youtube making projects easy and more approachable. Reupholstering your headboard is one way to make an old vintage item feel new. One bonus with reupholstering is that it’s relatively easy to do. Source some new fabric at a fabric store and use a staple gun to give your headboard new life. What’s even better – you can use a vintage-looking fabric. Reupholstering pillows or poufs are also a relatively easy project that can make a bedroom feel super luxurious and cozy. 

2. Refinishing Wood Furniture

Have you recently inherited an heirloom piece of wooden furniture with water stains? Don’t let these blemishes stop you from using these pieces. Scratches and water stains are common and can be easily fixed through restaining furniture. You can easily DIY these items to make them feel new again. Sanding down & re-staining wood furniture is an excellent and affordable way to give your old furniture new life. 

3. Crown Molding Details

Adding crown molding to your walls may sound like a difficult challenge, but it can truly become a weekend project that will add so much value to your home. Adding crown molding or wainscoting to your bedroom is a beautiful way to give your home some history and added vintage charm. Details like this can transform your bedroom into the ultimate cozy space

4. Shiplap Walls

Joanna Gaines and her popular show, ‘Fixer Upper’ popularized the shiplap wall trend in the late 2010s. Although the trend is ubiquitous with farm country style, this inconspicuous wall detail is a classic and traditional element that can provide your bedroom with tons of vintage charm with a modern twist. 

5. Experiment with Wallpaper

Wallpaper is a treatment that can add a serious statement to your bedroom. Either by purchasing vintage wallpaper or by using a vintage-inspired motif like florals or tartan, you can create a beautiful eclectic look that will make your bedroom feel lively and cozy without looking antiquated.

6. Second Hand Accessories

Vintage touches can easily be added into your bedroom design through second hand accessories. Items like candlesticks, mirrors or vases can add in small moments of vintage style. These small items can be easily found at thrift shops, garage sales, estate sales and on online shops like 1stDibs or Etsy.

7. Antique Mirrors 

Antique mirrors are a classic vintage accessory to add to your bedroom. On the wall or near your vanity, an ornate or gilded mirror never goes out of style and it will always look gorgeous in your bedroom. Even better – try to recreate a gallery wall of vintage brass mirrors for a modern statement look.  

8. Antique Picture Frames 

Similarly to antique mirrors, ornate or victorian-looking picture frames add a piece of history to your bedroom design. Save your memories by framing your photographs in these ornate frames. Use one as a small accent or mount many on your wall to create a large gallery wall. One tip is to play around with frame proportions and finishes for an eclectic look.

9. Candlesticks

Candlesticks are another accessory that is super easy to source vintage. Brass or silver candlesticks are everywhere in the secondhand market and they’re beautiful pieces to create a romantic scene. Create a gorgeous moment on your mantle or on your dresser with an eclectic mix of candlesticks in varying heights. 

10. Vintage Vases

Vases are an accessory that can easily be found secondhand. Antique shops are the perfect place to find unique glass vases, made from high-quality glass, ceramic or silver. Your floral arrangement will look even better in a unique, antique vase. Another tip is to use unconventional vessels like carafes or jugs to display florals. Even antique jars make great flower vases. Traditional florals like roses, hydrangeas or peonies will look elegant in vintage vessels. 

Four Poster Bed

11. Vintage Bed Frames

Four post beds or canopy beds made of wood or iron immediately feel vintage, and are the perfect antique bedroom idea. Large and stately, these antique beds are the perfect accent to an overall white room. Adding a large antique bed like this will immediately add a feeling of historic architecture to your space without having to do any remodeling to your home. 

12. Brass Hardware

Brass hardware is a tenant of vintage design. If you’re thinking of purchasing a new piece, think of replacing the hardware with antique brass handles. Antique shops are known to have baskets of vintage furniture handles and hardware to makeover new pieces. The mix of new and old can be a way to add old charm to a newer piece. 

13. Decorate with Vintage Books

Another styling tip for antique bedroom ideas that utilizes vintage is to use old books as decor. Vintage books look fantastic when stacked or layered in bookshelves and serve as extra decor as well as reading material. Hot tip: the next time you’re thrifting, look out for beautiful books by peeking under book sleeves. Some of the most beautiful book spines can be found beneath the cover.   

14. Plaid or Vintage Patterns

Bedrooms are areas where use of fabric is abundant through bedding, pillows, curtains and throw blankets. When sourcing new or vintage fabrics, paying attention to plaid and vintage patterns can be a way to add vintage flair in a modern bedroom. Plaid or floral motifs appeal to vintage style. By choosing an unexpected etoile motif or tartan pillow to your bed, you can create an eclectic bedroom scene that feels unique. 

15. Traditional Lighting 

Traditional-looking lighting is one lighting style that has come back in full swing. Brass task lighting and fixtures with linen sloped shades are back in popularity. Although real vintage lighting can be sourced, these styles are easy to find new as well, and can save you the trouble of rewiring them. These styles of lighting are classics and are beautiful to look at, as well as functional.

16. Vintage Fabrics 

Vintage fabrics that still feel modern are velvet and linen. Velvet fabric in moody colors immediately feels Victorian, but doesn’t feel super loud. Touches of velvet pillows or upholstered chairs are great when wanting to add cozy accents to a bedroom. Linen fabrics are also a fabric that feels vintage. Linen fabric is breathable, comfortable, and feels like it could belong in any era. Linen bedding will get softer as it ages and is the perfect fabric for a bedroom. Lacey ruffles are also an element to Victorian design that is lovely. Using lace sparingly on pillowcases or bed sheets can be one way to implement lace without making your bedroom feel too feminine. 

17. Quilts 

Quilts have been having a large renaissance in interior design in recent years. An icon of American design, quilts have a long storied history in traditional homes that are becoming more and more appreciated in today’s trends for their bright colors and handmade, heirloom qualities. Whether your quilt was handmade by a loved one that has been passed down or is one that is newly made, the quilt at the end of your bed is another way to deliver a modern vintage style. 

18. Add in Drapery

Drapery is one of those items in a room that can help complete the space. Although often forgotten about, drapery in a space makes the room feel customized and expensive. For a twist on vintage drapery, use brightly colored fabrics or loud patterns to tie the room together.

19. Moody Color Palette 

Dark, moody color palettes is another way to modernize vintage-inspired designs. Darker colors like blues or dark grays feel cozy and comfortable, and effortlessly chic. A moody color palette can also make quite a statement and feels very trendy. Read our post about dark bohemian bedroom ideas for more inspo. 

20. Cozy Reading Nook

Lastly, a cozy reading nook with a vintage chair is perfect for a vintage-inspired modern bedroom. If you have no idea what to do with that blank corner of your bedroom, try creating a cozy reading corner with a large upholstered chair, surrounded by art and of course, books. 

Creating a budget-friendly vintage modern bedroom is easily achievable by blending family heirlooms and antique treasures with your existing modern furniture. Keep these modern vintage bedroom ideas in mind the next time you find yourself antiquing and you’ll be surprised by how touches of vintage can transform your space.


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