Rich in texture and colour, old-world interiors reference the stately and provincial period homes of France, Italy and England.
There are iconic old-world pieces of furniture that come to mind when considering antiques or reproduction furniture, such as the classic English chesterfield, Louis XV–style armchairs, Louis XIV–style commodes, Baroque-style gilded mirrors, Romanesque statues and crystal chandeliers. Incorporating these furnishings undoubtedly adds a sense of grandeur and opulence to a room.
In this elegant study, award-winning interior design firm Greg Natale Design has used old-world design elements including parquetry floors, dark timber furniture and display cabinets, antique ornaments and a royal blue colour scheme.
A classic, highly recognisable piece of furniture, such as a stunning antique reproduction from the eras mentioned above, can effectively complement a far more contemporary environment. This concept also works in reverse – for example, choosing contemporary furniture or a classic Mid-Century Modernist piece for a Victorian-era home. To make this eclectic approach work, you need to create cohesion in the interior through complementary colour schemes and shapes.
These contemporary Sammem dining chairs look beautiful in this Georgian-era interior.
In bygone eras, interiors were richly decorated with ornaments, art, mirrors, and soft furnishings such as rugs, drapes and tapestries – particularly in the wealthier echelons of society.
While emulating the rich colour palettes favoured in these early centuries will help you achieve the right look, certain ornaments can also be used to recreate the period. Consider leather-bound books, crystal glassware, bone china and other decorative porcelain, silver platters, a grandfather clock, gold or silver frames on artwork and mirrors, chandeliers, and candlesticks in brass or silver.
The upper class also liked to display a sense of worldliness and sophistication, showcasing items such as musical instruments from around the world, Persian rugs, ornamental Chinese vases, Egyptian- or Greek-style artefacts, taxidermy, antique weapons like swords or guns, carved trinkets or sculptures, world maps or navigation tools.
A dark colour scheme, upholstered leather and fabric armchairs, ornate carved timber tables, grand display cabinets and an antler chandelier add drama and opulence to this bold interior by Greg Natale Design.
Mood lighting creates the right ambiance, so try lamps or overhead lighting with generous shading – or candlelight, of course!