Interior Design Tip of the Week – Adding Period Details

Period Perfect Details

Below are 12 splurge-worthy reproduction pieces that will restore vintage character to the plainest of homes.

No. 1 – Subway Tiles

Subway tile gained its name from its use in the New York City subway system, which opened in 1904.  The rectangular, white ceramic tile was selected for its durable and stain resistant nature, and the light color and high gloss were a good choice for the subterranean spaces of the subway.  White subway tile represents a vintage, early 20th century style that has seen a huge resurgence in popularity in the first decade of the 21st century.

No. 2 – Onion Porch Lantern

Named for its bulbous globe, this lantern—originally fueled by whale oil—has been a popular fixture for the entries of New England coastal cottages for more than 100 years.

No.3 – Hex Mosaic Floor Tile

Hex mosaic floor tile is the perfect compliment to subway tile. Originally used in turn-of-the-century homes and prized by Victorians for its good looks and fortitude against frequent scouring, patterned black-and-white hex tile remains a top pick for kitchens and bathrooms.This unglazed porcelain hex tile mosaics for their classic, elegant form and the clean, refined surface they create.

No. 4 – Victoria Screen Door

Often with spandrels in the corners and fretwork along the rails, screen doors from the late 1800s matched the gingerbread-draped entries in which they were hung.

No. 5 – Fishscale Shingle Siding

A hallmark of Queen Anne–style houses built from 1880 to 1910, wood shingles shaped like fish scales often decorated gables and dormers.

No. 6 – Craftsman Pedestal Sink

Designed to complement modest bungalows, circa 1910 bath sinks had an unfussy, clean-lined look.

No. 7 – Classical Crown Molding

Used for centuries to hide the intersection where walls meet ceiling, crown adds polish and elegance to almost any room.

No. 8 – Farmhouse Sink

A favorite in hardworking American kitchens since the turn of the 20th century, farmhouse sinks have a protruding “apron front” that was originally designed to prevent water that sloshed over the rim from damaging wood cabinetry.

No. 9 – Distressed floorboards

Whether it’s color variations, old nail holes, or tiny insect borings, floors with patina harken back to earlier days and give the rooms in which they are laid a warm, rustic look.

No. 10 – Box Staircase Newel

The newel posts in Craftsman-style homes from the early 20th century were chunky and square, and built like a hollow box.

No. 11 – Push Button Doorbell

By the early 1900s, electric push-button bells with cast brass or bronze rosettes had largely replaced door knockers as the way to announce your arrival.

No. 12 – Slate roof tile

Showing off prominent rooflines to their best advantage since the mid-1800s, slate can last lifetimes and come in an array of earthy colors.


*This weeks interior design tip brought to you by Heather Macisaac at ‘This Old House’ –

**You will find links to stores for all the above mentioned items at,,20487676,00.html

***As with any design tips, you will always be able to find a budget friendly version, and we encourage all those interested in taking on a home renovation project or two to check out for the budget friendly, lower-priced look-alike.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: