Clever Collection Ideas to Steal from a Vintage Lover’s Home

published Sep 20, 2017
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(Image credit: Federico Paul)

Ana and German make use of almost every wall, nook, and cranny in their dreamy Buenos Aires country home. In their case, it’s almost necessary, as friends constantly bring them flea market finds as gifts, and Ana is always searching high and low for vintage treasures. The couple’s home perfectly illustrates that displaying collectibles doesn’t mean the space has to appear jumbled or messy; their home is charming and harmonious. Best of all, these beautiful, collected vignette ideas can be implemented into almost any space — big or small.

(Image credit: Federico Paul)

Keep it beautiful and practical

Ana’s mom used to keep housewares stored away for special occasions. Ana, however, is the complete opposite. “This doesn’t apply in my house,” she says. “I like having every piece in sight.” In her sewing room (pictured above), she displays vintage floral bowls and plates that make her smile, but are also functional. Ana and German have no problem pulling items from the wall to use in every day life, such as the yellow embroidered dress at right (which Ana wears regularly). Keeping meaningful items like these on display pushes the couple to use (or wear) them as they’re meant to be.

(Image credit: Federico Paul)

Exhibit in unconventional places

Ana loves to collect enamel pitchers, so she places them along the stairway leading to the home’s second floor. Doing this — instead of keeping them stored in a dark kitchen cabinet — allows her to appreciate their beauty every day. This also illustrates the importance of looking for unconventional spaces to show off your favorite things. Ana and German take advantage of every surface to show off their favorite knick-knacks: window sills, countertops, and coffee tables. In their home, no surface is out of the question.

(Image credit: Federico Paul)

Embrace texture

You can never have too many throw blankets in a space, and Ana and German would agree. Their daughter Carmen’s room (pictured above) is filled with colorful afghans, shabby chic quilts, and chunky knit blankets. The throw blankets add color and coziness to the space, and keeping a variety within arm’s reach allows for rotating them often to change the feel of a room.

(Image credit: Federico Paul)

Maintain a unifying theme

Ana has a soft spot for enamel dishware and tin boxes, so she displays her collection on the living room coffee table. She grouped them based on a unifying trait (in this case, a floral theme), which helps keep the vignette looking balanced and intentional. It’s also worth pointing out that each piece doubles up as storage, keeping potentially unsightly items — such as pocket change, TV remotes, and other knick-knacks — out of sight.

Tips to display your collectibles at home:

1. Strive for functionality
Our prized possessions can be enjoyed for aesthetic purposes only, but one thing that Ana and German do well in their home is display items that are functional and beautiful, such as their vintage tea cups that are within reach when guests arrive.

2. Follow a unifying theme
Though the family’s Buenos Aires home has lots of stuff on display, each vignette is harmonious and balanced because Ana and German follow a theme for each cluster (e.g., floral enamel pitchers on the stairs, textured throw blankets in the bedrooms, and embroidered floral purses hanging from hooks).

3. Showcase your most meaningful items
When we have a connection to our displayed collectibles, it makes for a better home. Ana displays enamel dishware in the kitchen that brings back childhood memories, which bring her joy every day. Displaying things with interesting stories also spark conversations whenever guests visit.

See more of this beautiful Buenos Aires home → A Dreamy, Collected Buenos Aires Home in the Country