“Vintage” can cover a wide variety of styles and eras. From the Victorian period to the more-recent Mid-century, the term “vintage” is all-encompassing. A couple of elements that define a vintage home include adding an ode to the past, and focusing on quality. If you’re lucky enough to live in a historic home, play homage to times gone by with your décor. An easy way to incorporate a classic touch in your interior is by hanging wall art. The artwork itself doesn’t have to be vintage, but it should include a callback to the past. We’re going to take you through the steps to choosing vintage wall art to suit your space.

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The Vintage Style Breakdown

Large Vintage Wall Art Sizes

Vintage Wall Décor Shapes & Layouts

Vintage Kitchen Wall Art Ideas

Black and White Vintage Décor

Antique Décor Topics & More

The Vintage Style Breakdown

If you’re not sure which vintage era best suits your personality, we have an entire article to help you nail down your ideal period. The easiest way to find vintage décor to suit your space is to riff off of your home’s existing architecture and structural details. If you live in an apartment built in the 1920s, lean into the Art Deco period. If you are currently in a craftsman, choose a more shabby-chic approach. Select a piece of wall art that reflects your decade of choice.

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Vintage Décor: From a Pro

ElephantStock's interior design expert Elimar Lobo Sáenz shares her tips for antique-inspired furniture to pair with vintage wall art:

“Travertine and marble tables are two classic surfaces that have made a recent comeback. Explore the beauty of antique furniture and the vintage art of scalloping. Scalloped details can be found on lampshades, headboards, and even textiles.  Consider side tables or credenzas made of burlwood for a raw-meets-refined touch. Finish the look with vintage-inspired lighting like industrial bulbs or Edwardian holophane lights.”

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vintage wall hanging

Large Vintage Wall Art Sizes

If you’re going to add a piece of vintage wall art to your space, why not make the most of it? One of the biggest mistakes amateur designers make is choosing a print that is too small for the overall space. Selecting the right canvas size is even more imperative when crafting a classic space. Follow these professional tips from our Ultimate Wall Art Size Guide:

 “Your wall art should take up about 60% to 75% of the total empty wall space; in other words, the portion not covered by moldings or furniture. The first step is to measure the height and width of your wall. Next, multiply the measurements by 0.6 and 0.75. This will give you an ideal range of canvas sizes to suit your space.

If you’re searching for the ultimate statement piece or planning an oversized gallery wall, choose a print with these dimensions: 66"X33.” Measure your space first to make sure this eye-catching work of art won’t overwhelm your space. This size is stunning in a room with large, blank walls. Plus, it’s a super easy way to elevate your vintage space with a single piece of décor.”

Tips for Hanging Large Wall Art

If you do decide to opt for a striking, oversized piece of artwork, make sure you hang it correctly! Classic spaces are all about achieving perfect visual proportions:

“Leave enough space in between the edge of the wall and your piece of wall art. There should be at least a foot from where the wall ends, before your print begins. Hanging your art too close to the edge of the wall can make a space look crowded and disproportionate. Your interior should feel comfortable, so it’s important to avoid an unbalanced layout.”

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vintage wall art ideas

Vintage Wall Décor Shapes & Layouts

Speaking of proportions and dimensions, it’s equally important to choose the right wall art layout. Select your perfect vintage wall art shape from this list:

Keep it Classic: 1-Piece Classic Canvas

Add a Trendy Twist: 2-Piece Split Canvas

Mix Modern and Vintage: 3 to 5-Piece Multi-Panel Canvas

Go for Something Quirky: 7-Piece Hexagonal Canvas

If you’re leaning towards a multi-panel canvas, follow these expert tips to make sure you hang the panels properly:

 “For all layouts, we recommend leaving 1" space between each panel for the best spacious but put-together look. If the gap is too large or too small, you will lose the eye-catching effect of the split canvas. The height of the rest of the panels depends on the layout you selected. Some layouts are symmetrical, and some layouts feature different heights. The general rule is to be consistent! If you hang the left panel 3" lower than the middle panel, be sure to hang the right panel using the same proportion. Always make sure to use your ruler and a pencil to measure the ideal height.”

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vintage pictures for walls

Vintage Kitchen Wall Art Ideas

Vintage kitchens are all about embracing rusticity and farmhouse details. If you’re looking for a room to dip your toe into the vintage trend, your kitchen is a great place to start. Follow our expert advice for adding vintage French charm to your cooking space:

Vintage Wall Art Trends: From a Pro

Soft, purple hues have always hinted at French countryside vibes. There’s nothing more charming than a Provencal kitchen or rustic dining space. Start with a white or off-white base for a timeless look (i.e., quartz countertops and white wood cabinets.) Hang a print of a watercolor-inspired hydrangea or a fragrant field of lavender. It’s important to involve all five senses in your kitchen décor, and fresh herbs and dried lavender can add a needed aromatic element. These homey, country-inspired details will never go out of style.”

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vintage wall decor ideas

Black and White Vintage Décor

Vintage color schemes can range from pastels to jewel tones. If you want a light and bright space, stick to shades like dusty rose, beige, and powder blue. For a more dramatic space, explore hues like burgundy and eggplant.

Vintage Color Combos: From a Pro

Stumped on your perfect vintage color palette? Go with black and white! Our resident design expert Elimar Lobo Sáenz explains the beauty in simplicity:

“Black-and-white décor will never go out of style, and this classic color combo can help you create an interior that transcends time. Add shades of grey and charcoal to and soften the duality of black and white. This foolproof combo will make your space look instantly chic and sophisticated.”

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vintage wall art prints

Antique Décor Topics & More

If you’re looking for more guidance on vintage décor ideas, check out our article on the best vintage décor ideas for 2022. From wall art to furniture ideas, our inspiration blog is full of vintage design concepts that will still look current.

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Annette Schmucker