Victorian Dining Room

The Dining room is the place in our house where we have our food and offer delectable cuisines and dishes to our guests when they are invited for lunch and dinner. It is the most special place where every member of the family with guests can meet, have food and have an open discussion with everyone. It is also very important to decorate your dining room in such a way that it really becomes attractive and the best place for you to sit and have proper talking.

If you are interested in the traditional Victorian style then you can nicely decorate your dining room with the vintage ornamentals and accessories. Let us discuss the ways of decorating and making it more charming and charismatic.

1. Wall colors
The colors of the walls are rich and bright and give the walls a creative as well as authentic look. The Victorian dining room basically gives a royal touch to the house. The walls are usually emphasized by a dado rail that separates the wall into two sections. The section above the dado rail is to be done with a simple patterned wall-paper. The designs can be anything like tangled lilies, creepers, vines, brambles, etc.

Below the dado rail you can chose something of a dark color such as brown, green or dark pastel shades. The corners in larger dining rooms can have paneling and heavy draperies or curtains with a velvet touch look amazing in a rich contrasting color like rust, copper or even light golden.

2. The Lighting
In lighting the dining room, the chandeliers, sconces, candelabras, candle holders and other light fixtures on the walls or on the table tops create a great influence. The chandeliers can prove best during when guests are at home while the hidden lights and sconces can prove for individual or for couple dining time by creating a very soft ambience. For the pure classic look go for the A big candle stand in iron or silver on the middle of the table or place candles on them.

3. Furniture
The dining room without the proper furniture will be very incomplete. So go for the mahogany, walnut and rosewood dark stained furniture. It should actually be the large, strong and sturdy furniture. The tables and chairs should have a nicely chiseled and curved appearance, laying much emphasis on styling.

Also the important furniture, which must be there in a Victorian dining room, is a sideboard. This is set against the wall where there is large mirror with shelves and cabinets. The table has plates and a few important dishes like condiments, thus leaving sufficient space for table decorations.

Flowers on the table are also the major decorating part on the tables in the Victorian style and looks.

Thus these are the most exciting tips to decorate your dining room in the Victorian style and make it the most tempting in everybody’s eyes.

Tips to Accessorize Your Antique Victorian Fireplace

A Victorian Home is more appealing and beautiful if it has the fireplace designed with the beautiful vintage accessories and decorations. Fireplace provides a warm and cozy feeling and it is the place where the whole family can gather and talk. There are many precautions to be taken while lighting the fire so that sparks may not create the worst situation. There are various tools that help in making the fireplace handling safe and secure as well as ornamental.

Let us discuss the tips to accessorize the antique fireplace in a safe way.

1. Patterned Carpets
For giving the real look to your antique Victorian fireplace, patterned carpets are the best way to enhance the beauty of it. The texture and soft feeling of the carpets should be taken into consideration. More the traditional patterns more will be the vintage look and feel of your home.

2. Polished Floor Boards
The wooden floors are highly popular in the traditional Victorian style. These wooden floor boards are scratch resistant and also you can laminate the flooring if you are decorating fireplace in a budget. They offer a clean look and feel to the fireplace. If you want you can also have some reclaimed floor boards. You can also have solid black flooring which is affordable as compared to laminate.

3. Tiled Floors
It is very beneficial to tile your floor with the efficient and durable tiles so that they can bear the heat forever and do not produce any damages. They should be underneath the carpets and place those tiles which provide a complete vintage and authentic look. Checkerboard and herringbone tiles are very impressive for the particular Victorian look.

4. Rich tones of colors
Victorian home décor is famous for the dark and rich colors such as ruby reds, dark bottle greens, beige, etc. These colors renovate the room in a fantastic way. The fireplace if surrounded by dark tone of colors brings more warmth to the rooms.

5. Wall art
Wall art in the form of flock wallpapers is also very dazzling and can easily blend with the antique fireplace. The flock wallpaper is the traditional one and is the most popular patterns of old Victorian style.

6. Furniture
The fireplace can also be accessorized with the plump furniture. When it comes to accessories, over-abundance should be the preferable concern to decorate in Victorian style. Try to buy out the old chairs and sofas or antique furniture from the antique stores and accessorize your fireplace.

7. Patterned or velvet fabric
The choice of drapes above the fireplace or in the rooms can really put a very nice effect. Do not ever try to have draping fabric from the mantelpiece as it can lead to various accidents.

8. Skirting board
The Skirting board, dado rail or coving should be of the right choice. Try to have skirting board of 30 cm. Victorian tended to steer clear of the white gloss that tends to grace skirting boards nowadays.

9. Decorative screens

You can easily get the several types of screens shield an individual from heat. Some were used to hide the fireplace in summer months.

10. Fenders
A fender is three-sided rectangular shaped metal piece that keeps sparks from jumping onto carpets and flooring. They could be very ornamental at times.

Thus in this way you can beautifully accessorize your antique fireplace in the typical Victorian style.

How to Choose Decor that Fits Your Style

If you want to give a Victorian style to your house and do not know about the basic things that will blend easily in your home, then we have the right tips for you to choose the décor that can easily fit the Victorian style. The Victorian style is the lavish traditional style with vintage accessories and antique pieces to create a great impact. With the Victorian styling you can easily fancy and ornate the walls and surroundings with rich colors and accessories.

Let us highlight the ways by which you can choose the Victorian home decor that suits and fits your style of modern with traditional.

  1. The rich colors such as purple, reds, etc. are always considered the best choice if you choose the Victorian style for coloring your walls. Wall art is the fantastic way to add an attractive and gorgeous charm to the walls.
  2. The Victorian richness and deep jewel tones are wonderful in designing your home in the Victorian style. The shiny gold or brass also adds to the beauty of doors and cabinets.
  3. The deep burgundies, greens, gold, and plums highlighted with accents of pure white.
  4. If you think of hanging the antique items on the walls then nicely judge the position and lighting on the walls. If you are hanging a grouping of items on the wall, then come up with the design by laying them on the floor first to come up with how they look most pleasing. Thus when you are hanging art then you should think like a gallery and put the middle of the piece at eye level.
  5. There are many master paintings or old portrait paintings available in gold gilt frames in groups which will work well to add an interesting element to the Victorian decorating style.
  6. To add the charm to your décor, choose the perfect wooden or dark stained furniture. The round tables, side tables, cabinets, couches, etc. are the main key to a lavish decoration Victorian theme.
  7. You can come up with a use for pillows in every room even the kitchen and bathroom. Adding pillows in the bathroom is one option and you can quickly place one on the hamper or in shelves or racks with towels. Pillows are the best way to give an alluring effect on the Victorian home décor for those who cannot spend a lot.
  8. The decorative embroidered pillows should be placed at the headboard of your bed in the bedroom to give a great professional look. Side by side the adorable pillows placed on the wooden antique furniture in living room also give additional finishing and touches.
  9. Add candelabras dripping with prisms, crystal and sterling silver, or roses in vases for more of a feeling olden era. The mirrors in oval gold or brass polished frames work a lot.
  10. You should not forget about those accessories that give a fancy and decorating appeal. For the enhancing touch try hand painted china in a curio cabinet or place porcelain figurines on display shelves.
  11. Accessorize your Victorian decorating style with mahogany and marble furniture, and fancy metal accessories can help add charm.
  12. Make sure that your accessories are in the ideal scale to each other so you need to be aware of the sizes of your items when picking them.

Thus with the help of these tips you can easily choose the Victorian decor that suits your style.

The Victorian Crinoline

The 1800s crinoline, also called a hooped skirt or extension skirt was inspired by the open cage or frame of the 16th and 17th century farthingale and the 18th century pannier. The word “crinoline” originally referred to a stiff fabric with a weft of horse hair and a warp of cotton or linen thread. The Victorian Crinoline developed various appearances during it’s’ fashion lifetime as a result of new designs and methods of manufacture.

At least six heavy layers of petticoats were required to create the desired dome shape of the skirt which could be replaced as well. Thus the cage crinoline satisfied the needs of the women who wanted a perfect dome shape for their skirts. Due to the advent of cage crinoline, the women were freed from the hassle of wearing layers of petticoats and more concentration could be given to design a skirt to suit a particular bodice. The overall aim of crinoline was to give the “full” shape of wide skirt, reduced waist and matching bodice. The basic aim was to give a contrast between a tight fitted bodice and full skirt.

A very important reason for the advent of crinoline was that the layers of petticoats were not sufficient to create the perfect dome shape (as desired by the womenfolk of the Victorian era). Once a suitable model was developed, more effort could be given to developing better crinolines. Six layers of petticoats was a heavy weight and it would have given an ugly and inelegant look to the lady, who wore it. Thus the cage crinoline was developed to give the perfect dome shape in a simple and convenient manner.

The cage crinoline has an interesting history. Like so many fashion influences, this crinoline was made in France and subsequently adopted in England and America. Although the new crinoline did free the lady’s legs of “frou-frou” petticoats, it was often dangerous. It could have easily caught fire from candles, fire-grates or tossed “smoke-pins” of the gentleman. The bell shaped skirt soon took on the shape of cone with steel hoops only from the knees down. But, if the lady was smooth and flat over the hips, then wasn’t that worth it? It was not uncommon for a crinoline skirt to balloon up in the front if the lady wasn’t careful. But after all, it was the fashion and they were relatively inexpensive to buy.

The decline of crinolines began in 1860’s and after that Bustles or Tournures came in vogue. Instead of creating a dome shape the Bustles were used to create fullness at the back area around the buttocks rather than at the sides and front. Fashion changes every time and that’s what happened with crinolines, however ‘Crinolines’ did make an impressive mark in the history of women’s clothing of the Victorian era.

Romantic Victorian Decorating

If you are looking for the complete romantic touch and feel of your bedroom then you should preferably consider the romantic Victorian styling. You can renovate your bedroom in the romantic Victorian style to get break from the stress and tensions of the hectic schedule and spend some intimate time with your beloved.

The Victorian style is beautiful, unique and expensive but you can give your bedroom a romantic Victorian look in the affordable price. Adding a vanity and other feminine accessories will give you the finishing touches for a lovely bedroom.

Let us discuss how to decorate your bedroom in romantic Victorian style.

  1. The very first thing that you should look out for is the furniture. The other ideas will follow automatically. As we know that Victorian theme is abundant and luxurious, so try to beautify your bedroom with ornate pieces such as settee, an armoire, a bedside table and antique tables and chairs. Wood furniture, cherry or chestnut, is best. Any unnecessary furniture should not be used.
  2. Try to combine warm and cool colors. Choose your bed linens of pure white color while wallpapers, area rugs, etc. should be of contrasting color. The use of white in various textures and along with prints gives a feeling of luxury along with a sense of calm. You can then start by accenting the walls with warm white or yellow color. Always remember that you should use cooler accents on bedspreads, curtains and rugs, such as rose and pale pink, or periwinkle and white.  Even you can use gorgeous flower patterns on the walls and curtains.
  3. Accessorize the bedroom with pillows, cushions, pictures, window draperies or curtains; lacy and embroidered handkerchiefs and linens all add to the passionate atmosphere of the room. You can add few black and white or sepia photos also.
  4. The lighting of the bedroom should also justify the Victorian style of decorating. So you should pay proper attention on the ornamental light fixtures. Find lamps and light shades that have lots of fabric on the shades, pretty chandeliers that add to the atmosphere and other small lamps that can sit on tables and nightstands.
  5. You should create a canopy effect for the bed turns into a romantic bower. Try to screw the walls above the four corners of the bed and place cup hooks. Then you can simply gather the sheer panels onto the short curtain rods and hang one rod at the head and foot of the bed by the cup hooks.
  6. Make nosegays from the silk flowers and the ribbon, leaving plenty of ribbon straggling from each pretty bunch of flowers for a romantic finish to the bed’s steep panels as well as for sheer panels matching window treatments.
  7. Intelligently analyze where you want to keep the chairs and table. Put a small table against the corner of the wall and place a small chair in front of it. Then you can also decorate your room by placing oval shaped mirrors in gold polished or wooden frames. Similar framing applies to the old ancestral photographs or portraits. To give a classic Victorian touch you can place crocheted doilies on the wooden tables or cabinets. Even try to arrange perfumed bottles, fancy hairbrush, comb set, atomizers, etc. on the top of the vanity.
  8. There are various creative ideas such as you can cut a 4-foot length of the velvet ribbon and hang it beside the doorway into your bedroom.
  9. Your romantic bedroom would be the perfect place for a chaise lounge, a curved-back sofa or a window seat.
  10. You should look for the lady’s armchair and footstool in a pretty patterned material, or antique-style lamps with lampshades that look like stained glass for your bedside. An old-fashioned floral rug would be a great touch as well.

Thus in this way you can give a very romantic and lovable Victorian look to your bedroom.

Victorian Mirrors

Victorian mirrors have always been in demand, irrespective of the fact that they are not very modern or stylish. These mirrors have class, charm and elegance attached to them, and this the reason of their huge popularity over decades. Victorian mirrors are famous for there elaborate and stylish designs. Victorian mirrors, often the ones attached to Victorian dressers are large and oblong.

The average Victorian mirror is usually in the shape of a rectangle and the top edge is usually shorter than the side edge. They have gold or a dark stained wood color. However, these mirrors require a lot of care and maintenance so that the mirror remains beautiful and new, ever since the day you buy it. Whether your interior decorating needs call for a unique bathroom mirror, or a full length dressing mirror or a wall mirror for your foyer, living room or kitchen, Victorian mirrors are suited for every requirement.

There are a number of ways to clean your mirror, some of which are discussed below.

  1. The best way to clean the mirror is to get a piece of your cheese cloth and use a bit of your cleaner to clean and polish the frame. You can choose a wood cleaner but any furniture polish you choose will suffice. Make sure that you clean every inch of the frame thoroughly and neatly.
  2. You can also try using a streak free window cleaner. Streaks will only deter the mirrors natural beauty. After cleaning the surface of the mirror, go back to the frame with the same cloth you used with your furniture polish to assure there are no spots from the window cleaner.
  3. Another point that many people overlook is to keep separate pieces of cloth for cleaning different types of jobs. If you keep one cloth for wood furniture and other for items you clean other than wood polish, you will never have to worry about the wrong cleaning solutions on the furniture that it could damage.

Victorian mirrors are ageless and you can never attempt to compare their beauty and elegance with any other piece of mirror. If you follow the above ideas then your mirror can last forever with the beauty and grace that it had the day you bought it.

A Guide to Antique Bird Cages

Many people try to decorate their room with antique touches these days. Some decide to go with one or two pieces to bring the classic look to their abode while others decide to entirely decorate their homes in the antiques of the past generation.  Surprisingly, very few things can liven up the room like an antique bird cage. Antique bird cages are a popular addition to many homes. They fit in with many styles of decorating, including Victorian and Chinese also.

If you have a home with Victorian or French accent or decor, an antique bird cage will compliment any room of the house.  French and Victorian homes welcome antique bird cages and antique furniture because they are accessorized with those individual artistic and antique items in specific areas.

However, for antique lovers, it makes no difference what kind of home they have. An antique bird cage will look good in any setting. The modern room themes and designs will welcome an antique bird cage, if arranged properly in a particular setting. Floral motifs and minimalist style would suite or compliment the accessories in any kind of room.

One of the most important elements to consider before buying an antique bird cage is to reflect on the type of material used for its’ making. It can be made of brass or iron or wood etc. This is because you need to clean it according to the type of material (from which the cage is made of). If its’ made of brass or iron, then it can be simply cleaned with a rag. But if the cage is made up of wood, then you’ll need to take some different precautions. One thing is for sure; never use any type of store brought spray cleaner on your bird cage. These types of cleaners contain harsh chemicals that can easily destroy the painted surfaces, and possibly affect the wooden frame.

If you are keen on buying an actual antique, then be prepared to pay a hefty price. There may be alternate ways to get your hands on antique bird cages but they may be extremely time consuming and require a lot of effort because, you’ll have to travel around flea markets and garage sales for bargains. Sometimes, you can find undiscovered treasure for pennies but more likely though, you’ll have to pay. EBay is one place to check out for antique bird cages. However, before buying anything, do ensure that your seller is reputable. On way to ensure this to buy from sellers who have a positive feedback (of selling antique bird cages).

Antique bid cages are pleasing to the eye and can be become the focal point of attention in your room, if placed correctly. An investment like an antique bird cage can really enhance the look of your home, so weigh your options seriously before buying anything.

Dollhouse Library Colors and Coordination

A library or office in your dollhouse helps you define the area to which your dollhouse belongs; some furniture’s are very modern while others capture the essence of the Victorian era.  A library is an area where a couple of accessories such as a decorative globe or a stack of acclaimed books can help your dollhouse shine. A library or an office brings a little more refinement to your dollhouse.

Dollhouse libraries can be decorated with many combinations and styles, depending on your taste and preference. Here are some ideas to help you design your dollhouse library in a good manner. If you are looking for a classical or popular choice for your dollhouse furniture, then it is recommended to go with white. White is a fabulous and elegant color and it matches with every type of color. Another reason to a white color is that it is relatively easy to clean, dust and maintain. Moreover, white gives a smooth and classy finish to any decor.

  1. Instead of natural woody finish, you can go for black dollhouse furniture. Not only does black furniture attract the eye, but most pieces have accented hand-painted designs. Though the design has more to do with style than color, most black designs lend themselves away from a colonial or Victorian look into something that’s more modern and classy.
  2. Green dollhouse furniture is not a very popular option, but it has some great qualities for your dollhouse. A great reason for choosing green colored furniture is that it adds variety and mixture that not only stands out, but also makes other pieces and designs look unique. There are several shades of green to choose from, and you can opt for the one that unifies and enhances the look of your dollhouse.
  3. Though, it is not as popular as mahogany or oak, maple still provides a great creamy or reddish-brown finish to your dollhouse furniture. In fact maple woods, with regards to dollhouse furniture kits are probably one of the most scratch-resistant that you will find in the market. This wood-type matches well in coordinating any design and would fit in with any dollhouse style.
  4. Dollhouse library is not just about coordinating colors. It is more about the careful placement of accessories. The accessories may include some revered books, globes, a sofa-set and table, and other decorative items. However, you can either go for matching colors or allow a contrast.

Well, above are some of the color coordination ideas for your dollhouse library.

Dollhouse Kitchen Design and Layout

Dolls have been the best companions of young girls throughout the world. Dollhouses are built by almost every girl when she is young or small. Girls love to fantasy a beautiful house of their own and so they create the dollhouses in exact replica of their “dream house”. One of the principle rooms in the dollhouse is the kitchen. Therefore, the dollhouse kitchen furniture is one of the most important additions to any dollhouse.

Here are some of the important designs when it comes to the dollhouse kitchen.

  1. There is a huge range of dollhouse kitchen sets available from a few simple appliances to deluxe, everything that you can imagine. Tables and chairs are also an integral part of the dollhouse kitchen. Also keep in mind that many of the fun dollhouse accessories belong in the kitchen such as pots, pans and dollhouse food. So, make sure that your kitchen is able to display them.
  2. Most dollhouse kitchen furniture shoppers don’t realize that there are actually many different scales in the dollhouse furniture today. The commonest one is the 1 inch scale, meaning that every 1 inch equals a standard 12 inches or foot. There are also smaller and larger styles on the dollhouse scale. The smaller sizes are ½ inch and ¼ inch. The most important thing to remember with dollhouse scales is that they are consistent with your dollhouse and other furniture. The most common scale that you’ll find in stores and websites is the 1 inch scale and I’ll recommend you to work on this scale only.
  3. Style is another important factor when it comes to your dollhouse. There are a number of common styles that you’ll find for your dollhouse furniture: Victorian, classical, metro, and modern and many more.
  4. Victorian dollhouse furniture has the classic feel of the Victorian era-curved and rounded lines, high ended backs, and prominent detailed legs. Victorian dollhouse furniture are the top sellers in dollhouse miniatures due to their distinct and beautiful design. However, if you enjoy a modern look, then you can opt for the modern dollhouse furniture as well. Modern design has a unique feel to it, and I suggest that if you are interested in this route, then you should plan your entire dollhouse with modern furniture to keep a certain amount of consistency.
  5. Another factor that plays an important roll in the designing of your dollhouse is the color co-ordination. If you are planning to give a classy look to your dollhouse then I’ll recommend you to go with white color. It is a great color that matches with any type of flooring or wallpaper. Whatever the choice of color may be, it is important that you co-ordinate it with the color of cabinets and flooring.

So, by a little planning and preparation, you can give a beautiful look to your dollhouse.

Inside The Victorian Kitchen

The kitchen was a beehive of activity in the Victorian home, with preparations starting from hours before sunrise and until late into the night. The kitchen was usually a large room with an ample connected pantry.  More than often, it also had sleeping quarters for the cook or the kitchen maid. A Victorian kitchen was a place to chatter or gossip (about the masters and mistress of the house) and to cook sumptuous food.

Until the late 1700’s, the rich and poor shared some similarities when it came to kitchen and one of them was cooking on an open fire. But the turn of century, ushered in a more enlightened Victorian age and with it came the highly efficient cast iron ovens where the Lord of Manor’s cravings for rich baked goods and hearty puddings could be served. Although the new oven was efficient but was not convenient to operate. Coal had to be carried in regularly and ashes had to be removed throughout the day.  A servant would rise early to fire the stove and the domestic kitchen staff was required to keep it stoked all day.

With the passage of time, new stoves were invented that allowed cooks to regulate the temperature by adjusting a series of fuel and metal plates. Later, the gas and electric stoves were introduced which allowed the Victorian cooks to regulate the temperature by adjusting the knobs. It can be rightly said that the Victorian age, was the age of rebirth in the kitchen.

Copper pots, specially tinned on the inside (in order to avoid reaction with certain foods) were replaced with cast iron pots. The tastes of the Victorian era could be reflected by the invention of mass produced kitchen gadgets such as pastry cutters, jelly and pie moulds and biscuit tins. In fact the Victorian era showed the introduction of kitchen tools that are still in use today, such as can opener, cheese graters and potato peelers.

Some household names of today that showed their first appearance during the Victorian era were Perrier water, canned soup, canned pork’s and beans, Tabasco sauce, Gulden mustards and Folgers coffee. The appearance or the popularity of canned food shows that the Victorians struggled between home cooking and the lure of readymade foods.

The cook had a valued position in the Victorian homes and one who bore the title of “Professed cook”, meant that he had the skills to create and organize a fancy bouquet in addition to the daily meal and could earn as much as $72 a year. Cooks and kitchen maids saw or took to their notice, that in spite of any kind of challenge, the Victorian kitchen should produce rich delicacies fit for a Queen.

Well, above are some the most interesting and refreshing facts about the Victorian kitchen. The Victorian era is still remembered by everyone even though we have moved into the 21st century because of its’ historic and classical features.