A Modern Day Fairy Tale

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5 Tips for Keeping the Character in a Historic Home When You Renovate

Historic homes can be great for those who want a renovation project. Not only are they likely to be fixer-uppers, they often have beautiful features and are full of character. While you’ll no doubt want to have all the modern comforts in your home, there are ways you can achieve this while still keeping this character intact, so you get the best of both worlds. Here are some ideas to help you.

Research your home’s time period
When you buy a historic home, the real estate listing will usually have information on what type of house style the property falls under, as well as the year it was built. Houses in the USA often fall under a few distinct styles, from ranch houses to brownstones, so do some research on the type of house you’re buying, what architectural features they have, and how they might have been decorated in this time period.

Find modern fixtures in traditional styles
Most fixer-uppers will have fixtures that need replacing, from staircases to doors, and ideally, you should try to find modern fittings that have been made in a style that’s in-keeping with your home’s period. For example, when you are looking for windows Shrewsbury, you’ll find that modern window companies offer Victorian-style sash and casement windows that look just like the originals but have double or triple glazing and hard-wearing frames that won’t rot over time.

Focus on the architectural details

When you’re looking for style inspiration for your period home, focus on style details such as:
·         Baseboards·         Trims·         Tiles·         Ceilings·         Flooring

Where possible, use materials they would have used in the period when the house was built and consider picking the same sort of colors. This will give you a blank canvas to work with, so whatever decorative features you choose, you’ll still get a historical vibe.

4.   Take inspiration from design trends
There’s plenty of information about home décor trends through the years, so try to incorporate these looks into your home. If you are buying a home from the 1920s, consider investing in a couple of pieces of beautiful art deco furniture, or using some bold, geometric patterns and subtle gold foils. However, avoid overdoing it; otherwise, you may feel like you live in a museum.

Finish off the look with vintage-inspired soft furnishings

For a finishing touch to your room, look for some soft furnishings in the correct period style. For example, in Victorian-era homes, choose luxurious, damask type fabrics for drapes and cushions. In contrast, in mid-century homes, consider bold, colorful prints that are close to the popular styles of the time.

Renovating a historic home can be challenging, as homes from the past are usually beautiful, but wholly impractical. It’s important not to strip the character from your home, but instead to look for vintage-inspired fixtures and furniture that create a home where you are comfortable living yet is still full of period charm.


  1. This was a really informative read! At one time, I would have loved to have restored an old home! Unfortunately, that would have taken a whole lot of money that I didn’t have. I still don’t. i can still dream though. I have always loved the big Victorian style homes. I shared this on Pinterest. Thank you for sharing!!


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