The idea of a historical home is nothing new when it comes to choices for home and interiors. What era of “historical” are you looking for? A bungalow or ranch style home tends to only go back a few decades. TV shows like Mad Men brought the 50s and 60s aesthetic into the mainstream, and there’s no sign that it intends to loosen its grip just yet.
But what if you are interested in going back further in time?
Home decor is nothing new – styles have been evolving, changing, adapting and, well, occasionally killing people for years. So while you might want to skip over the arsenic-containing Victorian wallpaper of years gone by, there are plenty of other eras to explore when it comes to giving your very unique home a twist of the days gone past.
The house of Tudor occupied the English throne for a relatively short period of time (1485 through to Elizabeth I’s death in 1603), but they sure made the mark on the public consciousness. From the complex uxorious-or-murderous Henry VIII through the “Golden Age” of Elizabeth, the Tudors have given us a lot in terms of style. So in an age where indoor toilets were naught but the stuff of dreams, what can we take from Tudor style?
Tudor architecture is all about beams, both on the interior and exterior of the home. While you may not have literal supportive roof beams, you can add them relatively simply – and provide ceiling interest that little else is able to achieve with such style. They’re easy to maintain and look effortless, while still nodding to a bygone age.
The Stuarts were the dynasty who took the throne after the Tudors; they presided over some of the most tumultuous periods in English history. This is the age of Civil War, the Mayflower setting sail and pineapples and bananas as decorative pieces.
Pineapples and bananas were newfangled in the Stuart age. You didn’t eat one; you displayed it at home for your friends to come and admire.
In some ways, we’ve already returned to this trend – you can’t be aware of home decor and not currently be overwhelmed by the vast amount of pineapples on show. Okay so it’s not the real fruit, but that cheap metal ornament you picked up genuinely does have a heritage.
If you want to head towards the age of Victorian historical home living, then skip the Victorian wallpaper and go for decorative touches that aren’t going to give you a serious dose of arsenic poisoning.
The Victorian period was the age of industrial revolution and this shows in many of the design elements from the time. The geometric styles so popular today began to take root during this period (though their full explosion was with the 30s art deco). One thing the Victorians understood was how to give a room texture.
Wallpaper and decor were lush to the touch, patterned, with lace a particular favorite. Individual bulbs were used rather than stark central lighting, largely because electricity was still something of a new fad.
Glassware was also popular, as having an item purely for decorative effect took hold. And don’t forget a rug or three: bare floorboards were unheard of, so opt for floor coverings that are soft to walk on and highly decorative.