If you have an older home or a home design based on a historic style like Craftsman or Victorian, looking for design inspiration in historic homes is a good idea. Historic homes in your area can give you an idea of what interior design was popular in other time periods.
Looking at historic homes for inspiration doesn’t mean you should attempt to duplicate the interior designs exactly the same way in your own home. Styles and tastes have changed. While historic patterns, paint colors, flooring and fabrics can be lovely in today’s interiors, living in the past might not be the best choice for today’s lifestyle.
Inspiration means using bits and pieces of the past in new ways that suit the way we live today. Tin tiles for the ceiling, farmhouse sinks, batten and board paneling, wainscoting, and black and white checkerboard floors are all borrowed from previous generations of interior design. Look for inspiration for lighting, color palette, flooring and wall treatments in historic homes that can work with your home’s architecture.
If you don’t find inspiration in the historic homes in your area, design books and blogs can be wonderful resources for images. Books on famous American historic homes and European estates not only work to inspire your designs, but make gorgeous coffee table books. Historic homes and properties often have the best design ideas of their time. You might even be surprised at how timeless and beautiful some of the design ideas are in these historic homes.