22 Unique Ways to Turn Flea Market Finds into Vintage-Style Wall Art
Decorating with Flea Market Art
When shopping for art at flea markets and antique stores, look for designs that repeat a similar theme. Mismatched frames and diverse color schemes can still create an attractive arrangement if the pieces are all connected with a unifying motif. Here, an array of silhouette portraits is made even more interesting thanks to the varying sizes, shapes, and styles of their frames.
Vintage Basket Wall
Gather an assortment of woven baskets and mount them for boho-style wall decor. Scour flea markets and thrift stores for baskets with interesting patterns or colors on the inside. Hang the baskets with the bottom side to the wall by hammering a nail through an opening in the weave.
Personalized Vintage Artwork
Put your own twist on a piece of vintage artwork with a little embroidery work. After removing flea market art from its frame, stitch your desired pattern using embroidery floss. Add a pattern of geometric shapes across the image, or highlight certain areas with an accent color, paint-by-numbers style.
Flea Market Stairway Decor
Liven up a blank staircase wall with a gallery composition of flea market art. Collect items in various sizes and orientations that fit around a particular theme, such as these items with a rustic cabin vibe. Salvaged wooden signs, metal letters, and antique wall decor can all add texture and interest to an otherwise empty space.
Color-Blocked Flea Market Art
Give framed art from flea markets and thrift stores a quick, colorful update with paint and poster board. Create a playful color-blocked design by painting only a section or two of the frame. To avoid damaging the actual painting, cover the print with poster board in the same color, lining up the edges with the painted areas of the frame.
Antique Mirror Display
When displayed en masse, antique framed mirrors in various sizes and shapes become a dazzling ensemble. To create a beautifully spaced grouping like this, trace to-be-hung mirrors or frames onto sheets of newspaper first. Cut out the shapes and tape them to the wall, rearranging them until you create a design you like.
Vintage Sports Decor
Varsity letters and athletic patches create sporty flea market wall decor. Arrange a variety of sizes and shapes to create a more dynamic display. Look for letters, emblems, and other memorabilia in family attics and at flea market vendors specializing in vintage sports or academic gear.
Antique Letter Signs
Slotted signs let you personalize walls with a customizable message. In this entryway, alphabet tiles on a Sunday school sign spell out a warm welcome. The letters can also be switched to call out a holiday greeting or compose a phrase marking a special occasion.
Farmhouse-Style Flea Market Art
Move a farmstand sign from roadside to your mantel to accent a farmhouse-style living room. This sign's black-on-white message underscores the room's country appeal and ties into the neutral color scheme. Sculptural branches and vessels displaying mossy filler bring a natural touch to the mantel decor.
Search flea markets and vintage shops for summer camp references to bring a whimsical, outdoorsy feel to a bedroom or living space. Here, statuesque lanterns line the top of a partial wall, and vintage graphics, forest imagery, and adventure-related gear form a camping-themed gallery wall. To create a cohesive look with dissimilar objects, group forms by function, assemble items by theme, and combine pieces from the same place into one arrangement.
Target Wall Art
Designed to stand out, shooting targets boast powerful patterns that are worthy of framing. A simple black frame and a light-color matte board turn this paper target into a focal point on a bedroom wall. Simple furnishings and muted colors keep the focus on the wall art.
Antique Headboard Wall Decor
Headboards salvaged from cribs, daybeds, and kid-size beds can be repurposed as large-scale art. When mounted on the wall, a headboard's shapely outlines, vintage details, and faded finish can generate plenty of interest. Look for options with chipped paint or a distressed finish to enhance the antique look.
Industrial-Style Wall Decor
Reclaimed machine parts, like the large gear hung prominently on this wood-clad wall, beautifully complement decorating styles from contemporary to rustic. Exhibit larger pieces singly so their hardworking forms can be appreciated. For smaller industrial parts, group them together to produce a salvaged gallery wall display.
Antique Clock Display
When you're shopping a flea market or tag sale, take time to rummage through every box of miscellaneous stuff. You might discover inspiration for flea market art, like this trio of mismatched metal clock faces. An ornately carved frame and pretty ribbons amplify the grouping's importance and convert the diverse objects into an eye-catching composition.
Flea Market Paintings
Sort through piles of flea market and thrift store paintings to find inexpensive canvasses that speak to your personal aesthetic. These artworks satisfy a homeowner's love of the great outdoors and garden-fresh hues and forms. United by green and golden yellow brushstrokes, two still lifes and a landscape become an enchanting exhibit that adds cheer to a simple workstation.
Framed Flea Market Art
Vintage frames with gilded, distressed, or painted finishes look lovely when displayed by themselves. But you can also use them to highlight a smaller painting or photograph to create a multilayered composition. This vignette works well because the frame and artwork share green and brown tones. The frame's rough patina and the painting's softer brushstrokes create an interesting juxtaposition of textures.
Sentimental Flea Market Display
Showcase found objects that evoke memories of family vacations and favorite places. This graphic resort sign directs the imagination lakeside but stays in step with the room's contemporary furnishings thanks to a shared color palette. A sleek black frame also helps elevate the salvaged sign to art status.
Bathroom Flea Market Art
Gather multiples of one type of small object to create an interesting wall display. Vintage faucets mounted on a board, for example, function as industrial-style bathroom artwork. Borrow this concept using antique doorknobs, ornate hinges, brass doorbells, skeleton keys, or other small relics to create statement-making art pieces.
Vintage Chart Display
Academic charts, mathematical diagrams, and world maps evoke different periods, places, and learning experiences. In this country French kitchen, a Flemish fractions chart partners with farm-animal prints to underscore the room's Euro-farmhouse roots and further the collected style. Choose items in a similar color palette or re-frame them in a cohesive style to achieve a united look.
Vintage Portrait Art
Modern technology allows treasure hunters to customize vintage acquisitions to suit their needs. This photographic portrait, which was found wrinkled and rolled up at a German sale, originally measured a mere 12x8 inches. After buying it for $12, the homeowner had it enlarged at a graphics production company to amplify its impact.
Vintage Poster Art
Illustrated charts and posters harvested from classrooms and laboratories can serve as bold wall art. This oversize chart depicts the inner workings of a bivalve in colorful and graphic detail. Ragged edges and yellowing paper enhance the scientific rendering's timeworn appeal.
Repurposed Flea Market Art
Think beyond an item's original function to create truly unique flea market art. Printed canvas sacks, for example, can be reused as upholstery fabric to recover the back of a sculptural antique chair. Showcase doors and cabinet lids with interesting details on the wall for an instant conversation piece.