The words “Amish” and “Modernize” aren’t often used in the same sentence, but maybe they should be.

While you probably haven’t seen many Amish homes featured on the glossy pages of design magazines, these people have some serious opinions on how to build a functional house. Amish elements can be seen in modern home styles all over the globe, and these trends are here to stay.

Amish people are known for their simple living and reluctance to adapt to modern technology. This means they’ve had generations to craft quality home design.

They know what works, and they’ve perfected their own techniques. There’s a lot we can learn from looking at vintage Amish ideas. By using these ideas in our own homes, we can modernize while making our style last longer.

Hardwood Floors

When you think of the Amish, you probably think of woodwork and carpentry. This craftsmanship goes back generations, and most members of the community start working with wood as children.

While no two Amish homes are the same, one common trend is hardwood floors. This is likely surprising since so many modern homes in English—or non-Amish—communities also feature hardwood flooring.

To stay true to the Amish style of wood, leave the flooring unfinished. Like other Amish creations, hardwood flooring is expected to wear with age naturally. It’s tempting to match the tone of the wood with your furniture, but this isn’t the Amish way.

Mismatched shades are an Amish staple, so don’t be too matchy-matchy with your styles. Soften the look with a few rugs, or leave it bare for an understated effect.

pexels-photo-259962 Vintage Amish Ideas That Will Modernize Your Home

Long-Lasting Furniture

The best way to utilize Amish design ideas is by incorporating Amish furniture in your home. A lot of people make the mistake of assuming Amish furniture is simple, bland, and out of touch with modern trends.

This couldn’t be further from the truth. In reality, Amish furniture comes in all types of styles and shades, and there are many pieces that are exceptionally modern.

What makes Amish furniture different from the selection at big-name retailers? Craftsmanship. Amish furniture isn’t built in a factory. It’s made by hand, and it’s built with tried-and-true techniques that are proven to last generations.

Every piece is crafted from solid hardwood and produced by a skilled carpenter. From elegantly curved desks to simple and modern dining tables, you can find something to match every style without having to replace it in a few years.

Vintage Lighting

The lighting in your home plays a big part in how you feel. Research from the Journal of Consumer Psychology shows that intense lighting leads to intense emotions, both positive and negative. Using the built-in, harsh light in your home might be leading to increased stress, not to mention it does nothing to improve your home’s style.

Take a cue from the Amish and go vintage with your lighting. Most Amish don’t believe in public electricity. That means they use different sources to light their homes, whether that means natural gas lights or battery-powered lamps. While you don’t have to go out and purchase functional sconces for every room of your house, you can incorporate Amish elements like vintage oil lamp displays or iron ceiling fixtures.

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The Amish have an extensive quilting history. This tradition didn’t take off in Amish communities until the 1870s, and from there it really exploded. Like most of their lifestyle, their quilting patterns are conservative and functional. The fabric was usually plain and solid in color, but many communities have begun to branch out in recent years to more exciting patterns.

Today, Amish quilting is still popular, and you’ll see these quilts displayed and in use across America in both Amish and English homes. You can bring quilting styles into your own home by looking for these conservative patterns in other design accents like rugs, curtains, and bedding.

Plants & Vases

The Amish are an earthy people. They’re reliant on the Earth for their daily chores and resources, and this is reflected in their home style. It’s common to see potted plants in and around Amish homes, and this is a trend that’s also exceptionally modern today.

Because the Amish use very few decorative pieces in their homes, these indoor plants take over this function. They exist solely to bring some of the outdoors inside, and you can easily do this in your own living space. The Amish favor decorative pots for their plants, and you’ll see them in all sorts of displays whether they’re hanging from the ceiling or propped on a bookshelf.

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Finally, the Amish are all about practicality in their daily lives. While we might not be as reliant on clocks today as we were twenty years ago thanks to smartphones, there’s no denying the classic aesthetic of clock design. Today, Amish people still rely on clocks to tell the time. However, this isn’t your run-of-the-mill wall clock. They prefer elaborate, musical timekeepers that chime every hour.

While their clocks are as gorgeous as they are functional, not all of these translate to modern homes. You can update this vintage classic by looking for similar styles that already suit your space. Use a natural wood, preferably one that’s battery or hand powered, and display your piece in a prominent living area. While you might not need to rely on your clock to let you know when to start daily chores or prepare for bed, you can still admire its classic charm.

Vintage Meets Modern

The Amish have long been pioneers in functional, understated home design. This same trend is leading the way in modern movements, and it’s no wonder why. In a world filled with so many rapidly changing trends and products, we all just want something built to last.

This is a concept the Amish have held dear for centuries, and we could learn a thing or two from their commitment to craftsmanship.

Bring your home into the 21st century with these vintage Amish ideas. It turns out these humble people know a few crucial things about home design that transcends generations. You can feel confident these ideas won’t lose their impact in a few months. They’re here to stay.