Period dramas have a huge influence on interior design, from vintage and upcycled furniture and traditional taps and sinks. Google Trends data reveals that searches for ‘Downton Abbey home’ increased by 87% the month of the first film release in 2019. We’re predicting the same search increase for the second film.
We've gathered some insight from interior designers on how to create the perfect period drama interior, along with a wonderful case study from a Downton Abbey-inspired Instagrammer.
How to Achieve the Edwardian Look
Lisa, home stager at Stylize Studio suggests that the following elements will add that signature Edwardian style to your home:
- Deep and rich regency colours such as dark greens and plums
- Contrast colours with gold and copper accessories
- Opulent lighting and furnishings: chandeliers, fringed/tassel fabrics, damask style wallpaper and four-poster beds
- Antique and vintage furniture
Case Study: Downton Abbey Inspired Kitchen
Real Estate Manager Elizabeth O’Connor, 53 at @cranstonehouse spoke to us about her Downton Abbey-inspired kitchen and how she created such a beautiful space.
Her kitchen is full of gorgeous copper moulds, bold colours and traditional accessories and has all the right elements for an Edwardian-style kitchen.
What Was Her Design Inspiration?
Speaking about her design inspiration, Elizabeth told us,
“The inspiration for my kitchen came from many places; primarily from spending hours looking at a multitude of images on Pinterest. I did also feel inspired by Downton Abbey. Sometimes I come home from work and think “I just want to go to Downton” so I put on the show and escape into the fantasy! The sets are beautiful and the story is warm - the Downton kitchen is just gorgeous in a modest utilitarian way.”
The dark green walls contrasted with the copper elements, large Belfast sinks and open shelving give a traditionally vintage look.
Where Are the Copper Moulds From?
Elizabeth has an extensive collection of vintage copper moulds, pots and pans which are the biggest eye-catching piece of the space - really giving her kitchen the classic ‘Downton look.’
“The vast majority of my copper collection came from eBay. It's a great place to purchase both new and old items. A few things came from Etsy and other online retailers but mostly eBay.”
What DIY Tasks Were Involved?
Elizabeth mostly did the renovation herself and “hired an electrician and plumber when necessary.” This helped her to save on costs as she did the work over several years as a series of mini-projects and spread the cost over time.
“Probably one of the most challenging things was laying the sub-floor. I had to be sure I had a good rigid subfloor for the brick slips, and I had a lot of space to fill (the previous floor was pine set on sleepers), so the sub floor is 2 sheets of 3/4” ply-wood with a sheet of 1/2” cement board on top. All those sheets are big and extremely heavy. I brought my 19 year old daughter in to help me lay the sheets in place and we managed it!”
She started to install the cabinets herself but called in a carpenter when she realised the Shaws sink was too heavy to lift! She did all of this DIY around her full time job.
How to Achieve a Period-Style Kitchen
To achieve that classic period-inspired kitchen, Lisa, home stager at Stylize Design claims the following elements are crucial:
- Ceramics and stoneware
- Open shelving
- Copper, iron and granite
- Belfast sinks, hanging utensils, butcher block style worktops or marble for luxe
- Cornices and architraves
Get the Look
Are Maximalist Interiors on the Rise?
We’ve seen stripped-back minimalism have its time in interiors but now it’s time to embrace larger things. Maximalism is an aesthetic of excess, with bold colours, textures and clashing styles. Interior Design Masters contender Molly Coath, from MoCo Interior suggests why maximalism is making waves in interior design:
“With the advent of Covid, the world has been a bleak, grey place for a few years now. Maximalism is a bi-product of this - a way for the interior world to say ‘we've got to get away from all this grey.’ There are no rules with maximalism - the more colour, fun and joy you can throw at it, the better!”
Lisa, home stager at Stylize Studio goes on to suggest that you can incorporate maximalism into the home with:
- Clashing patterns and colour
- Bold wallpaper
- Mixing of interior styles
- Fringes and tassles
- Juxtaposition of furniture - art deco, mid century, vintage and retro
If you want to achieve this look on a budget we recommend focusing on adding copper accessories to your kitchen, which can be bought for cheap on eBay, and re-creating Instagrammer Elizabeth’s statement wall of copper moulds, pots and pans.
The trend for old-time luxury in interior design seems to be going nowhere! Check out our blog on traditional bathroom ideas to find out how to achieve the ideal vintage bathroom without breaking the budget.