The owner of Mid-Century Online, The Vintage Hub and Historic Interiors prop hire, Killian McNulty’s eye has long been drawn to eclectic, unique and vintage finds. Here, he shares his advice for vintage shopping.
PHOTOGRAPHY Ruth Maria Murphy
1. Antique dealers can get a bad rep as being grumpy or unfriendly, but in my experience it’s best to go in to a shop and engage with the owner. When you find a few things you like, then go back and ask the owner what they can tell you about the piece. In some cases, an object comes to life when you hear its backstory.
2. Don’t be afraid to buy from antique shops when you’re abroad. Your purchase will be a lovely reminder of your trip and help you to create a more layered look in the house. Small items such as sculptures, art glass, paperweights, lamps, desk items or prints are all easy to carry home.
3. Lots of people think you can’t mix antique and contemporary, but they work really well together and can give your home an added layer. For example, an antique table can often work well with a modern chair.
4. Don’t forget that buying antique and mid-century furniture is also environmentally friendly, as you’re giving new life to something already made.
5. You will always regret the things you didn’t buy. If you love it, then buy it; don’t miss out because with mid-century pieces, when it’s gone, it’s genuinely gone.
6. My current buying craze is small bronze sculptures. I love them. They are generally good value and represent a solid investment for the future.
To see how Killian’s style works in his own home, check out Modern Retro in Clontarf.