Best Practices for Incorporating Inherited Pieces Into Your Home Decor

This restored secretary really compliments the room

I often get asked how to combine furniture. In other words, if you have inherited your family’s heirlooms or if you and your partner decide to move in together and you both are bringing your “stuff”.

It can be overwhelming to think about this and where it’s going to be placed. I usually start by weeding out the junk, unless it has serious sentimental value you can easily part with that old chair from the Sofa and Chair company you bought year’s ago. Or, that first sofa you have been hanging onto since college graduation. Usually, upholstered items are some of the easiest to part with and replace. Casegoods can get tricky if it is of significant value. Say, a Maitland Smith piece from your grandma or a custom made piece by your woodworking Uncle. Don’t stress, you can find a place for these heirlooms even if it doesn’t exactly fit your style.

Where it gets even more complicated is if it is an entire set of furniture (e.g. dining room). There are ways to utilize what has been given to you! It definitely is less expensive than buying new and it has sentimental value that new would not provide.

For example, you don’t have to put the entire dining room set together. Consider spreading it around your home, use the table as a desk in a study, or add new chairs and place the original chairs grouped in
with the new. It is good to mix things up as it creates interest. One thing I will say for sure is do not overcrowd your space. It looks bad and shows that you were just trying to make it work.

Every wall does not need to be covered with something. Consignment furniture stores are great places to get rid of your furniture. You will need to take pictures of the items you no longer have use for and take them to the consignment store and they will tell you whether they can help you sell them or not. You will then need to hire a delivery service to deliver the items to them.

If they don’t sell they will donate and give you the receipt. There are also other options if you have an entire house full of things. You can have an auction at your home and after the sale is over the auctioneer will arrange to have the items donated. You also might want to think about family and friends that are in need. Most times, that is your best option because relatives may find sentimental value in it.

In the end, you should do it with love! I know how easily it is to get attached to things, but remember it is only stuff. Family is what really makes the heart of the home.