Vintage Industrial Styling Tips
Vintage industrial style is typically seen in huge open loft spaces that were once factories or warehouses and in the late 90’s became the homes of architects, bankers and other successful young professionals in the bigger cities. Vintage industrial furniture and décor has however now started to cross over to the mainstream but how do we achieve the style in our own, perhaps more modest homes and less suited homes?
The best place to begin an interpretation of industrial style trend is undoubtedly in the kitchen. Predominantly as a place of function and when it comes to vintage industrial design it is functionality that provides form. Large open workspaces, large bits of kit, metalwork, tools and gadgets…with a kitchen you are already halfway there!
An industrial theme is undoubtedly rough and ready, that’s a big tick for the budget from the outset. Cancel the decorator, and you definitely won’t be requiring a plasterer. Instead celebrate exposed rough brick walls, and don’t even think about boxing in pipes or supporting metal work in ceilings and walls. Instead draw attention to metal beams by hanging oversized lights. I recently saw an incredible bar which used upturned metal buckets with oversized vintage bulbs strung from them.
Such an effective, eye catching look and much cheaper than some of the over sized shades on the markets if you can track down some old zinc buckets. If you can’t come up with the buckets however an array of oddly sized exposed vintage bulbs, on wires of varying length works so well. We hope to bring you a selection at The Orchard shortly so watch this space. Away from ceilings and walls, old floors should be embraced as well. If you are in an old home the character of well-aged floors ought to be embraced rather than replaced.
If you are fairly adept when it comes to DIY you can save an awful lot of money by creating a vintage industrial look. Besides the obvious embracing of exposed raw architectural elements, an industrial kitchen allows you to forego expensive granite worktops, and invites you to scour reclamation yards and the like to find old wood sleepers or cheaper and more readily available reconditioned scaffolding planks. If you are even handier you can look to make your own chunky concrete surfaces which believe it or not can be polished up. There are lots of How To guides on-line for this which result in superbly robust and polished looks.
Upcycled and repurposed furniture is obviously a strong industrial trend and an easy way to buy in to the look. Think rusting lockers, woodwork stamped with consignment or manufacturers logos. Also look for more commercial pieces styled around old industrial designs. The Orchard’s Vintage Industrial furniture collection features many items styled around old laboratory pieces and uses reclaimed metals.
If however you are fortunate enough to find an original piece of industrial furniture remember it is the blemishes, ageing and rusting that give the piece its unique character. Don’t overdo any refinishing or compromise the patina of a surface. Simply brush away flaking paint and seal it to keep it safe and hygienic. Again lots of guides can be found on-line to help in this respect.
Shelving and other simple storage can be easily created with scaffolding planks, old step ladders and of course the trusty repurposed wooden pallet. Many people are now even constructing furniture from pallets. Trust me its hard work initially but you can create some fantastic items for next to nothing. Crates, open shelves or even a simple kitchen island can all be easily achieved with these materials.
A great industrially styled space should convey style but also practicality. Be sure your space not only looks cool but that it is practical and comfortable. Reclaimed wood can soften all that metal work and deep wood tones add warmth.
Natural textures also offer a contrast to all those manmade metals and tough stonework and allow you to bring in some softness. For soft furnishings think minimalistic designs, perhaps just a simple bold red stripe. Fabric wise think wools in neutral colours, or Hessian sack or jute pieces.
Interest and colour can also be introduced by hanging curiosities. An over sized or vintage styled clock is a must have. The Orchard has some fantastic vintage clocks from Newgate and our one metre diameter Steeple Clock is a long time favourite for a vintage industrial look. Clocks in particular look great set against exposed brickwork.
In addition to clocks think old road signs, Americana works well and reproduction metal signs are readily available over the internet.
And don’t forget some greenery, a couple of pot plants in zinc pots will bring life and soften the look.
Unquestionably metal seating is a sure fire winner for an industrial styled space. Here is also an area where wood and metal work perfectly together. Stools are a must have, particularly those with spiral raising mechanisms, rusted metal work or large raised rivets. Tolix chairs are also all the rage and now widely available in a range of colours. More comfortable perhaps for dining than a stool, again The Orchard has a wide range of vintage industrial seating to choose from.
If the budget will stretch to it, and space allows an old leather look chairs or sofa is a must. The older looking the better. New pieces work just as well however and some clever finishes mean new pieces can still look weathered and worn.
See more of our Vintage Leather collection here:
Finally the accessories, there are now an abundance of such items available. Think exposed metals, brushed steel, retro styling, bright enameled paint or really aged and rusted finishes. The Orchard’s shabby chic home accessories pages are a great place to start:
As are our storage pages where we have some great vintage styled baskets and wall hooks:
Shabby Chic & Vintage Industrial Furniture From The Orchard
So whether you are looking for shabby chic or vintage industrial furniture pieces or anything else we provide, view the collection or get in touch today on 0845 643 0363 or via firstname.lastname@example.org