the Vintage Modern shop – vintage, budget chic style for your home & wardrobe

The Vintage Modern shop offers curated, vintage style at budget-friendly prices. It’s like shopping with a team of interior designers without the designer price tag. And you never even have to leave your couch.

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Why Shopping Vintage is One Way You Can Make a Difference

How to Make a Difference, Buying Vintage is Green, UpcyclingPamela DeweyComment

Hi friends.

I wrote this post before all the events transpired in Charlottesville, Virginia over the weekend, but I wanted to briefly address those acts of terror and intolerance.

I was horrified by the hatred and violence that occurred in Charlottesville, Virginia over the weekend. Emma Goldman said, "The most violent element in society is ignorance." White supremacists, neo-Nazis and other hate groups are not only completely ignorant, but are also incredibly dangerous. And we cannot let hateful speech and actions like this continue. We must denounce this type of intolerance, and we must be vigilant in our denouncement of it. So to all my friends that are people of color, queer, transgender, Jewish, female, and all other the people these ignorant, violent idiots are rallying against, I stand with you and against this type of hatred. 

The rest of the blog was written as a reaction to the federal climate report that was leaked last week.

***

This year has left many of us feeling helpless. There are so many causes that deserve our attention: police brutality, transgender rights, access to birth control, immigration law and let’s not forget—the environment.

Last week, I was reading about the federal climate change report in The New York Times, and it stated, “The average temperature in the United States has risen rapidly and drastically since 1980, and recent decades have been the warmest of the past 1,500 years.” 

So the world is getting warmer, as climate scientists have warned us for quite some time. And we are not doing enough to address it. There are still many that deny that global warming is caused by the actions of people.

I first learned about global warming in elementary school, and that it is caused by pollution. I never questioned my science teacher or the reading we did in our textbooks. I also tend to trust the 97% of the climate scientists that think global warming trends are likely due to human activities.

When I read things like the climate change report and hear about our country stepping back many environmental protections, I too feel a little helpless.

So what can we do to make a difference? Or more specifically, what can you do to help the environment?

You can shop vintage.

I know, I know. That sounds super self-serving. I own a vintage store. You’re absolutely correct.

But the truth is shopping vintage keeps these items out of landfills.

Remember our Stormy Sky Chic Upcycled Wood Dresser? I found that on a curb. It was in terrible shape. It took A LOT of repair work to fix that dresser. But fix it I did, and then a nice woman and her daughter purchased it for her daughter’s apartment.

But if I had not intervened, it is likely that dresser would have ended up in the garbage dump.

And who could forget our Make It Your Family Farmhouse, Upcycled Trestle Table? My dad built this table from boards removed from his family farmhouse. The house is no longer habitable, but the wood is certainly still usable. My dad pulled as much wood as he could out of his old home. He ended up making three tables, and has a fourth in the works, from all the boards he salvaged.

Obviously, not all vintage furniture or home décor is bound for the dumpster. But the truth is, some of it is.

There are plenty of people that don’t have desire, skills or time to rehab these items. And I get it. My life is incredibly busy too. I certainly don’t have the time to save every dresser on the curb.

But each dresser, pile of boards or old blanket that we rescue is one more step towards a healthier, less wasteful world.

We made these  Cabin Chic Upcycled Plaid Valances  from an old blanket. Green decor can look pretty beautiful, huh?

We made these Cabin Chic Upcycled Plaid Valances from an old blanket. Green decor can look pretty beautiful, huh?

And every time you buy vintage, know you are doing your part in helping care for our planet. It is a small thing, but if we all band together and do a lot of small things, it can make a big difference.

Oh and you may just get an awesome brass planter out of the deal. :)

7 Easy Steps to Build a Gallery Wall

Pamela DeweyComment

Hi friends.

As someone who loves to decorate (and redecorate) her house, this week I thought I would share some tips on how to create a gallery wall.

There are multiple ways to design a gallery wall, but here are some of my favorites. Let me know in the comments section, if you have any other ideas to add.

1.      Start with one piece of art and build from that. This is often a bigger statement piece, but it could just be your favorite piece of art.

2.      If you want to go for a particularly clean gallery look, use frames that are all the same color. Or if you prefer a more eclectic look, mix in different styles and colors of frames.

3.      Lay your artwork down on the floor and practice arranging it. You can even take pictures with your phone to help you decide what arrangement you like best.

4.      If you are a graphic design pro, you could lay it out in InDesign, or whatever program you like. It might be more time consuming, but if you are very particular, this is a good option.

5.      Another option is to use painters tape to outline the art on your wall. This will give you a good idea about how the frames fit together, but you won’t get the visual element of how the art mixes.

6.      Make your significant other, roommate or Mom hold up the art in your desired location. (This requires a patient significant other, roommate or Mom.)

7.      Get out the hammer, nails, a pencil and a level. It’s time to hang some art! Remember, you can always fill those nail holes later if you change your mind.

Below I have shared some photos of the galley wall in my living room, as well as a link to a beautiful home featured on Design*Sponge with its gallery game on point.

 

This is the gallery wall in my living room. Please forgive the glare on some of the pictures. I am working on my photography skills.

This is the gallery wall in my living room. Please forgive the glare on some of the pictures. I am working on my photography skills.

Here is a closeup of my gallery wall. I went with a mixture of frame styles and colors. Also don't Jeni's prints look great?!

Here is a closeup of my gallery wall. I went with a mixture of frame styles and colors. Also don't Jeni's prints look great?!

The Vintage Modern shop's Top 5 Sources for Creative Inspiration

Pamela DeweyComment

Hi friends.

Inspiration is probably the most important element of creating. Without inspiration, you are just a writer sitting at a desk, a musician staring at the keys or an artist with a blank canvas.

Like most creators, I find inspiration in a variety of ways. This week I thought I would share my top 5 sources to get my creative juices flowing.

1.    Design Blogs

My favorite design blog is Design*Sponge. It was started by Grace Bonney in 2004, and it features home interiors, recipes, DIYs, before and after projects, art, business tips, and just about any other type of design you can think of.

I check out Design*Sponge not quite every day, but close. It keeps me up-to-date on the latest trends in interior design, inspires how I decorate my home and also inspires the pieces I create for the shop.

More than just the content she shares, I find Bonney herself a source of inspiration. Her blog has turned into a wildly successful company and brand. She has published two books, and the most recent book, In the Company of Women, is a New York Times Best Seller.

But Bonney does more than market her own brand, she also encourages other women to succeed. She regularly features other creative women on her blog and shares their secrets of success.

When I was creating the Vintage Modern shop, I often looked to Design*Sponge, and Bonney particularly, to figure out the best practices for launching a new business.

As I mentioned in last week’s blog, I also really enjoy the design, DIY, food and fashion blog, A Beautiful Mess. Sisters Elsie Larson and Emma Chapman have fabulous taste, and their homes are impeccable.

I can also credit this blog for cementing my love for all things blush pink.

2.    Books

I have always loved reading. Reading helps me recharge my batteries. Reading helps me disappear into another world. Reading teaches me to be a better writer. Reading teaches me more about the world I live in.

I try to read every night. And when I start a really great novel, I can wile away a whole Saturday curled up on the couch reading. It feels like the ultimate luxury.

I am currently reading Difficult Women by Roxane Gay. Gay is one of my favorite writers, as well as a feminist icon. With her book Bad Feminist, she not only coined a much beloved term, but also created a legion of devotees. Difficult Women is a collection of her short stories, and it does not disappoint. I aspire to be half the writer she is.

I am also reading In the Company of Women by Grace Bonney, as mentioned above. In the Company of Women, as the cover states, contains “inspiration and advice from over 100 makers, artists, and entrepreneurs.” Also as the name suggests, all these creatives are women.

My favorite profile so far is Genevieve Gorder’s. Gorder is an interior designer and a host on HGTV. She is also from Minnesota. (Twin Cities!) Gorder is beautiful, talented and she seems like just a genuinely lovely person.

When asked what success means to her,” Gorder replies,

“The simplest answer I can think of is to able to live my imagination and give it away to as many people as possible in one lifetime. I’m never worried about having enough inspiration. I’m worried that one lifetime will never be enough to execute it all.”

As a woman who has multiple creative passions, this answer really resonates with me. I worry that I am pulling myself in too many directions, and I will never have enough time to get it all done.

At the same time, being able to create and share my art with the world is the most amazing feeling.

Last Friday, I sold my Shoe Collector Curio Cabinet. After I delivered the piece, I followed up with some care instructions for the customer. She texted me back, “I love it so much!! Thanks for dropping it off…Even my 2 year old said PRETTY when he saw it.”

Receiving that text was so rewarding. She loved the cabinet as much as I did, and I was so happy that I could share my creation with her.

3.    Music

Music is such an important part of my life. I listen to a little bit of everything, and I often listen to music while I write. It helps set the mood for the creation process. (I am listening to the new Bon Iver album, 22, A Million a lot.)

Music can also inspire what I create. Sometimes a lyric from a song will inspire me to write a story or a poem.

But more than just inspiration, music helps soothe my soul, provides me focus and helps me unwind. I mean, is there anything more cathartic than a five-minute dance break?

4.    Pinterest and Instagram

I find so much inspiration scrolling through my feeds on Pinterest and Instagram. Pinterest has a lot of good DIY ideas, and there are so many insightful pins about refinishing furniture on the site.

And personally, Pinterest is my go-to source for recipe ideas. As someone who loves to cook and try new things, Pinterest is a great resource.

Instagram is more than just a photography site. It is an online community where people can share their art and interact with other artists.

And believe me, they are so many people making great art. The beauty shared on Instagram continually blows me away.

5.    Thrift stores and flea markets

I love the thrill of the thrift store hunt. Scouring through racks and racks of used clothing, and then stumbling across that perfect vintage coat is quite a high.

Finding thrift store treasure takes patience, perseverance and a good eye. Through my twenty odd years of combing through racks and shelves, I have developed a very good eye. I am always on the lookout for that diamond in the rough!

Hope you enjoyed my top 5 sources of inspiration, and maybe found some ideas to get your creative juices flowing!

In the Company of Women by Grace Bonney

In the Company of Women by Grace Bonney