Architectural Salvage in Home Décor

decorating a home

Architectural Salvage in Home Décor

Architectural Salvage is beautiful relics and design elements that have been removed from buildings, and the grounds of estates, that would have otherwise been destroyed. These articles usually have elegant, ornate carvings and design features, often with an attractive patina, or weathered finish that adds a sense of timeless sophistication. Architectural salvage pieces come in all shapes, sizes and styles such as columns, gates, archways, doorknobs, panels, mantles, doors and windows, friezes, facades, bath fixtures and many more elements that add drama and personality to home and garden décor.

Versatile Salvaged Shutters

Vintage shutters add texture and style to any area of your home or garden. The best part is, you can find them in all varieties and dimensions to fit the needs of your project. Here are a few ideas;

  • Pick a small shutter to use as the top of a small console table, or coffee table. For a professional look and even surface, top off with a piece of cut glass.
  • Hinge shutters in front of an open bookcase to hide contents and add a dimensional design element to any rooms
  • One shutter mounted horizontally – or two shutters hung vertically side-by-side – on a wall make a shabby chic headboard
  • Fit two matching shutters into a corner, and add triangular-shaped shelves to create a unique corner shelf
  • 4 tall, thin shutters hinged make a great room divider or privacy screen
  • Heavily weathered-looking shutters can make a great decorative backdrop for a charming garden spot


Columns Create Character in Home Decor

Ornamental columns of wood, concrete or stone have great appeal in, and outside the home. Floor-to-ceiling columns can add instant drama and elegance when placed decoratively in corners, flanking a door, or to create a striking exterior entranceway, or as part of a classic garden scape.

Memorable Mantels

Mantles are a great find in architectural salvage. From rustic to ornate, vintage mantles made of wood, concrete, or marble can dress up an ordinary fireplace, or instantly transform any plain wall into an elegant and cozy focal point.


Get Creative with Antique Brackets

Vintage wood or metal brackets offer limitless possibilities for design and functionality. Here are a few suggestions;

  • Mount a thick, ornately-carved wooden bracket on a wall to serve as a shelf for pictures, or collectibles
  • Hang intricately-designed metal brackets inside the corners of an open doorway or pass-through, to add an elegant touch
  • Metal brackets mounted on an interior or exterior wall is a great place to hang plants, wind chimes, ornaments, and other decorations
  • Two small, wooden brackets make unique and trendy bookends
  • Make a shelf or faux mantle out of two matching brackets with a wood or glass panel on top

See the Design Potential Through Windows

Salvaged windows abound in potential, and variety. Let the sunshine show off your newly acquired vintage leaded or stained glass window by suspending it in front of an existing window. Or, re-purpose a multi-paneled window to display family photographs or pictures. To create a stylish room divider, hang a larger decorative window from the ceiling of a cut-out which will separate the space while letting light through. Antique windows look great in garden décor too.


Salvaged Doors Provide Drama and Function

Doors are another staple in architectural salvage, with many possibilities beyond replacing existing doors. A sturdy vintage door covered with glass can make for interesting dinner conversation when it is converted into a dining room table top. Just like salvaged shutters, weathered antique doors can provide style and function when mounted horizontally on the wall to create a rustic headboard. Or, an antique exterior door with rust grilles will create a grand and romantic entranceway to a master bedroom suite. Salvaged doors hinged together make a beautiful and functional privacy screen in the bedroom, or section off a cozy nook in any area of your home.


New Uses for Old Hardware

Some of the smaller, yet no less magnificent items you will find at an Architectural Salvage dealer will be elaborate and beautifully crafted hardware such as doorknobs, locks, drawer pulls and hinges. These pieces are functional pieces of artistry that with a little clean up and imagination, can serve again with their original functionality, or even be re-purposed as towel hangers, bath and kitchen pulls, furniture feet, jewelry, even wall art.



Look for Hardware Details



Architectural Salvage Dealers in Pennsylvania

Below is a short list of Architectural Salvage dealers in Pennsylvania. You can also find many reputable dealers by searching online.

Architectural Emporium
207 Adams Ave.
(724) 746-4301

Architectural Antiques Exchange
715 N. 2nd Street
(215) 922-3669

Philadelphia Salvage Company
542 Carpenter Lane
(215) 843-3074

1801 North American St. #1E
(215) 925-2002

3016 East Thompson Street
(215) 634-3474

Construction Junction
214 N. Lexington Street
(412) 243-5025

Olde Good Things
400 Gilligan Street
(888) 233-9678

Historic York Architectural Warehouse
465 Prospect Street
(717) 854-7152

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