Old table, modern style
I love to mix the old and the new. Old houses and inherited furniture tell stories that draw me in, but spare modern lines appeal to my need for order in the home. Mixing styles presents a challenge: how do you mix and match in a way that's coherent?
My mother recently gave me my great-grandparents' Hepplewhite Revival mahogany dining table as a gift from her own dining room. My family ate slow, social dinners around this table throughout my childhood, and I'm thrilled to pass that tradition on to my own son at the same table. However, it needs to fit with our mid-century modern furniture and Shaker-style built-ins. How do I make it work?
For inspiration, I found some examples of traditional furniture in modern spaces.
These spaces share a few commonalities:
- None make use of the original matching chairs. A few stuck with vintage chairs, but they switched to Thonet bentwood or Wegner Wishbone chairs for clean lines. (This is also a more practical choice than upholstery in a dining area.)
- The chandelier has a big impact on how the space is perceived. Ultra-modern chandeliers make the space feel ultra-modern regardless of the table, whereas an organic light fixture made of natural materials feels modern but softer.
- The floors are either bare wood or a geometric pattern. A thick, elaborate Persian rug would swing the rooms back towards the traditional end.