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‘OLD MONEY’ AESTHETIC FOR THE HOME

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What does your home decor say about you? If you love a classic, timeless style, the ‘old money’ aesthetic will bring you endless inspiration. With #oldmoney having over 2.3 billion views on TikTok, let’s explore why this popular theme is not going away anytime soon.

‘OLD MONEY’ VERSUS ‘NEW MONEY’ STYLE:

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ABI Interiors

‘New money’, or ‘nouveau riche’, is flashy and loud, usually with prominent designer labels on show. Sports people, celebrities, investors, entrepreneurs, and anyone who is ‘self-made’, who didn’t inherit their wealth define the ‘nouveau riche’ category. Despite their hard-earned success, this term is often demeaning, with social commentators claiming this class of people lacks the sophistication of the ‘old rich’.

What is the ‘old money’ aesthetic? You’re ‘old money’ if you were, quite literally, born into wealth held over multiple generations. Focused on covert luxury, you’ll find a fashion style full of traditional colours and prints that look like effortless, understated aristocracy. You will discover preppy, classic attire, most notably made from the finest materials. Your closet will be full of cotton, cashmere, wool, and tweed pieces that never go out of style. Think conservative, with a value on craftsmanship, heritage, and elegance.

WHAT DO ‘OLD MONEY’ AESTHETIC INTERIORS LOOK LIKE?

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ABI Interiors

The ‘old money’ rich aesthetic gives a sense of prestige and social class, not necessarily attaching to particular labels or brands. In interior design, you’ll find a range of styles that fit the ‘old money’ style. You may consider a more formal, classic look for your home or furnish it with extra (historical) glam. Following the theme of quiet luxury, choose only quality decor that allows for pleasantly stylistic aging.
 

Focusing on legacy and lineage, you may look to styles such as Beaux-Arts architecture, Art Deco or a traditional style. Texture and fabrics are revered over brand names. You’ll notice an ode to legacy and lineage through an aesthetically ‘worn’ look on key decor. You’ll step into a space of timelessness as you walk through each room, understanding that ‘old money’ naturally rejects fleeting trends.
 

As known as a preppy home style, ‘old money’ is considered the Ivy League of home design. If you’re looking to emulate this style, consider navy and white, which bring a classic touch to the home. Ralph Lauren does a spectacular job of exemplifying preppy interior design. You’ll find an extension of his clothing line in the preppy home style, with classic colours and prints. According to designer Ralph Lauren, he wanted to embody a ‘private clubbiness’, Harvard and ‘Brooks Brothers lifestyle’.

Consider a modern twist on the classic home chandelier, chesterfield sofa and antique furniture for preppy home decor. Look for tones of natural brass, mahogany, walnut, and ebony.

‘OLD MONEY’ HOME DECOR

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ABI Interiors

Consider these featured fabrics and patterns to embody the ‘old money’ decorating style.

Chinoiserie is a pattern born of an artistic style adopted from Asian countries in the 18th century and is the pattern you commonly associate with China. For ‘old money’ aesthetic room decor, chinoiserie vases can add visual impact as either a centrepiece or complementary decor, and are a common feature in Ralph Lauren retail stores and headquarters.

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Damask upholstery or curtains add lustrous grandeur to a living room, not only through its enduring quality but the rich history too. Originating in China in approximately 300 B.C., damask expanded during the Middle Ages through the Middle East and Byzantine. Today, you’ll also find the pattern used in wallpaper, decor, fashion, and home linen.

If you’re a tartan fan, you have the Scottish to thank for it. Known as breacan in Gaelic, these chequered patterns were the everyday attire for the Highlander clan (the original kilt-wearing, bagpipe-playing folk). Though it was a design associated initially with the rugged, mountaineering dwellers, royal use of tartan is found from the 15th century onwards, with varying ‘levels’ of tartan allowed to be used according to your social status. Tartan is the perfect ‘old money’ room decor for upholstery, table linen, blankets, and curtains.

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ABI Interiors
ABI Interiors
ABI Interiors

A velvet chesterfield sofa, bed, or footstool can add plush glamour to any space. This fabric originated in Egypt from 2000 B.C and is truly ‘old money’. The process of creating velvet was so elaborate that only royalty and the highest aristocracy could afford to possess it. Though most velvet is now made from polyester, opt for a pure cotton creation to give it a royal feel.

Lastly, stripes can add a nautical ‘old money’ upgrade to any space. Though initially cast to persons of perceived low reputation (such as prisoners, prostitutes, court jesters, sailors, and enslaved people), ‘The Black Death’ in the 14th century turned this all around. Estimates suggest that 30–50% of the population perished during this time, which meant survivors inherited wealth from potentially various family members in a short period. The surge of riches, particularly in Italy, is theorised to have led to the beginning of modern Italian designer luxury.

THE PERFECT KITCHEN AND BATHROOM FIXTURES TO EMBODY ‘OLD MONEY’:

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The Kingsley Provincial Collection is the perfect range to help bring the ‘old money’ feel into your home. With fixtures that embody a classic style, your bathroom and kitchen will experience a luxurious upgrade.

 

To put your ‘old money’ interior design inspiration into action, read our article ‘How to Create an Interior Design Moodboard’.

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