Doing décor Flea market style
Get your hands on antiques and heirlooms
The flea market style creates a fine blend of eclectic and antique décor. Some of the best ways to find antique, vintage or retro items is to reach out to friends and family who may be willing to give up heirlooms they do not feel attached to. Local antique stores may also have a lot to offer, both in terms of authentic pieces which have been around for decades and replicas which can be customised just for you.
If you have always been fascinated by very specific types of antique or vintage items, such as cameras, retro toys, miniature animals, or tin signs, you can try looking into collector's shops online which cater to these interests.
Regardless of how or where you get your decor items, the main goal is to obtain pieces which remind you that they have been through a lot, even before they came into your life. It may be a rocking chair which solaced people no longer around, or a dresser which housed trends long forgotten.
Upcycling and repurposing
Upcycling and repurposing old pieces will help add eccentricity to your interior while also helping you make trade-offs for some of the more mundane room instalments. It can also be more utilitarian than one may expect. Used and embellished wedding trunks may help serve the purpose of a living room table when upcycled. If you have always wanted to add a tea table but lacked the space for it, you can try turning an antique dresser into a high tea station. A second hand headboard may be repurposed as a small bench near your entrance, and get people wondering about its origins.
Exotic looking house plants may be the perfect companions to flea market style décor, as they help add to the feel of transcendence from time and place. Additionally, they may serve as show pieces themselves.
If you would like to add a fairy tale element to your décor, try a fairy castle cactus. Ponytail palms can help take your imagination to a desert oasis, whereas miniature Christmas trees can take you somewhere cooler.
Distress, chip, substitute and down cycle
Even if some new pieces just lack the ability to demand attention, you can still alter it with DIY techniques to get it to hold a flea market essence.
Flea market style decor is known to incorporate distressed rugs, mats and throws. If you have an oriental area rug or a painted and braided mat laying around, they are the ideal candidates for a flea market makeover. Laying them out on a rooftop or balcony under direct sunlight will bleach them, making them appear as if they have been passed around for decades.
Chipped paint is one of the other foundations of the style, and can also be imitated with relative ease. Layering any cabinet, closet or chair with multiple layers of chalk paint before scrubbing it with coarse sandpaper can be a quick old timey fix.
On the other hand, newer items such as lanterns made out of coloured glass or brass miniatures may look right at home in a flea market styled room, without any added modification.
Eclectic within limits
If you do decide to try out eclectic decor, make sure all the components of your room balance each other out. This may require you to go for plain white walls and muted white curtains, so that the room does not feel like it has too much going on in it. If the walls or curtains are too bright or flashy on their own, your room may end up looking more like an eyesore than a box of eccentricity.
It is also important to make sure that the colours in your palette do not clash too much. This may require you to keep the colour wheel in mind so you can steer clear from untasteful colour groupings.
Lastly, it is best to go minimal when it comes to flea market style decor. When most pieces demand attention, even a moderately decorated room may feel maximal in a bad way.
Photo: Sazzad Ibne Sayed