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How to Achieve the Antique Look, without Antique Prices

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Posted: Sunday, March 2, 2014 10:00 pm | Updated: 1:32 am, Mon Mar 3, 2014.

(Family Features) If you're a fan of antiques, you likely already know that true antiques can cost a fortune. But the truth is, some modern pieces can be made to look antique, and when balanced with real antique pieces, you can achieve an overall look that will fall in line with your aesthetic.

Try these tricks for antiquing accessories and furniture in your home:

Country Antique

If you're interested in the white country-style antique look, consider purchasing unfinished wood furniture and using different painting techniques to "age" the pieces.

For example, if you start with an unpainted wood chair, you can first apply black spray paint over the surface of the chair. Next, you'll want to paint the chair with the color of your choice. After the paint has dried, use sand paper to take away some of the paint and follow with a finishing spray. Check out the step-by-step tutorial to create your own country "antiqued" furniture at www.diynetwork.com. And if you're looking for a paint that will do half the work, check out the Chalk Paint at www.anniesloan.com, which adds an antiquing layer to painted furniture.

Distressed Antique

If you want to take it a step beyond country antique to truly distressed, you can use a variety of tools - such as a chain, hammer, chisel and sandpaper - to add more character to wood furniture. Use these tools to achieve the right look:

  • Chains - You can actually throw a chain at wood furniture to create elliptical dents in the wood. Don't worry about the method for throwing; you want the markings to look random.

  • Pry bar - If you want deep grooves akin to a work bench, try dragging a pry bar down the length of the piece.

  • Hammer - Using both sides of a hammer - as well as the pry bar - you can create dent marks all over the piece as well.

  • Power Sander - Using a power sander on painted furniture, you can quickly "age" a piece by sanding down through several layers of paint.

For helpful videos and information, check out the blog www.prettyhandygirl.com.

Antique Your Accessories

If you already own a few antique pieces, but want to mix and match with more modern styles, look to your accessories to help bring each piece together cohesively.

Blend the old and new. Write down family recipes on thick paper, then stain them in various types of tea to help make them look older. Finally, frame them and hang them on the wall in modern, glass picture frames for an antique and modern look in one.

Make what's new, old. Take a few tricks from www.ApartmentTherapy.com, which successfully transformed an Ikea basic card catalog into a vintage-looking piece by sanding down the corners of the draws to appear more rounded and worn, then staining the wood a dark teak and oiling down each piece. Finally, the designer added authentic brass card file pulls and created labels in Photoshop using a vintage script.

Blending modern and antique styles is all about balance, so look at what you currently have and how to make each piece work together cohesively. Then, slowly add vintage pieces - whether furniture or accessories - into your home as you can afford to do so. Either way, the extra thought and effort will pay off in the long run.

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