Infuse nostalgic summer vibes into your home with these vintage patriotic hutch decor ideas!
Close your eyes for a moment and picture what a nostalgic Summer is like for you. What do you see or smell or taste? For me, it’s the sight of American flags, enamelware and rusty tins. It’s the smell of fresh cut grass and sprinklers. It’s the taste of cold watermelon, iced tea and grilled chicken. Summer is not just a season. It’s a way of living and a mindful practice of embracing joy. Today, I want to show you how to bring that Summer nostalgia into your home with these vintage patriotic hutch decor ideas!
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Summer has a special kind of freedom to it. It’s the type of carefree season where you can stay out past dark looking for fireflies or eat one too many s’mores.
This easygoing and unworried time of year is the perfect avenue for decorating with nostalgic Summer items such as galvanized metal, flower frogs, milk glass, vintage enamelware and rusty tins. Join me as I transform my hutch from Spring to Summer and find simple ways of using these old pieces in beautiful Summer vignettes!
Where to Find Vintage Patriotic Decor
This time of year, vintage shops and antique stores are packed to the gills with vintage Americana ephemera. Because the booth owners hand-pick their items, you will find a very curated selection of patriotic decor to choose from.
However, these re-sellers usually know what they have and will price things accordingly. Having said that, in my experience, you can always find something that speaks to you within your price range.
You can also shop at thrift stores for patriotic decor. Whether you are looking for bright and bold American flags or more subdued vintage Americana, thrift stores are gold mines when it comes to seasonal decor. Thrift shopping is an amazing way to outfit your home for specific seasons or holidays on a budget.
I’ve also linked some fun finds from Amazon at the bottom of this post for you. Be sure to check those out if you are an online shopper!
Vintage Patriotic Hutch Decor Ideas
Before we get into styling my hutch, here’s a real life, behind the scenes look at how it actually started.
I pulled out everything that could possibly work for Summer decor and piled it all on the table until it was a huge mess. Honestly it’s sometimes overwhelming for me until I start weeding through it all, pulling out one piece at a time.
Is this how seasonal decor changes goes for you too?! Please tell me I’m not the only one 🙂
Step 1: Choose a Color Scheme.
Let’s chat for a minute about the color scheme for my hutch this Summer. I tried decorating with red, white blue and yellow last year and I absolutely loved it. So, why re-invent the wheel when I already have what I need?!
However, there is one specific item that I recently found at the thrift store that is my color inspiration for the whole hutch.
It comes in the form of this old tobacco box. At least I think it’s a tobacco box…or a cigar box. If you know what it is, let me know in the comments!
I knew in an instant that this box was going to be the focal point in my hutch. The graphics on it are just amazing and the colors are spot on! I think I paid $2.00 for it.
Tip: Is there an item or something that you already have around your house that you could use as a focal point? My advice for choosing a color theme is to find one inspiration piece first and build everything else off of that.
Step 2: Empty the Hutch.
Whenever I start a new seasonal display, I empty everything out and give it a good dust so I have a clean slate to start with.
Step 3: Start Placing and Moving Decor Around.
This part of the decorating process is the most tedious but also the most fun. There is no rhyme or reason for this step.
Basically, I use this time to do almost like a ‘test run’ of which decor works best where. It helps me to rule out which decor pieces I don’t want to use and which pieces I do.
For example, I had initially placed the yellow box in the bottom corner as a base for this teapot. Then I was like, “Well, since this is the focal point, it should be front and center, not in the corner where it’s hard to see.”
Duh! So, I moved things around and ended up placing a few vintage plates under the teapot instead.
I like my decorating to tell a story. So for me, I find that this step helps me to create a cohesive display with much creative thought behind it. But, you can totally skip this step altogether if you already have a certain idea in your head.
Step 4: Position Tall Anchor Pieces.
When styling shelving, I like to use taller decor pieces on each side to help anchor the display together. When you are choosing which pieces to use for this, keep in mind the color theme that you have chosen.
On the bottom left side of my hutch, I stacked two Ironstone bowls together and then placed a blue glass jar with faux white flowers in them.
Each of the shelves in my hutch contains two anchor pieces, one on each side.
On the top shelf, I paired this crusty yellow and green enamel kettle on the left with a vintage marshmallow tin on the right.
These two decor items share similar yellow coloring, making the shelf feel united.
Step 5: Add Layers.
Next, you will want to start adding layers. This includes background items such as books, large plates, or platters as well as smaller items to set in the foreground like little creamers or jars.
Below, you can see how I used three vintage books in various sizes against the back of the top shelf. Those plate grooves come in handy for more than just plates!
Using books or something similar allows for there to be more color in the background instead of just plain white.
Art is another amazing item to use for layering into a background. If you missed it last week, I shared all about this vintage barn painting. It fits perfectly into this patriotic Summer display!
Remember that old yellow box I was telling you about earlier? Well, it’s now front and center on the middle shelf! It was the inspiration piece for this whole display so it deserved a prominent location.
In the front of each shelf, I paired enamel cups with milk glass and ironstone creamers.
The juxtaposition of metal and glass delights the senses!
By utilizing different heights in the layers that you use, you are adding interest and dimension to the display as a whole.
Another idea for layering is to use a linen such as a tea towel or hanky.
Here, I placed a vintage hanky underneath the trio of glass jars. The linen helps to break up the hard surfaces and usher in some softness.
Step 6: Bring in Texture.
When decorating, texture can come in many forms. These could include faux stems or greenery, linens, or patterns, just to name a few.
I wanted to bring a pop of yellow to each of the shelves in the hutch. So, on the top shelf, I tucked a thrifted yellow gingham napkin into a milk glass pitcher. Pattern is a form of texture because of the movement that it brings to a display.
To bring some life to the hutch, I popped these yellow Billy Ball stems into various vessels on each shelf.
Then, for some drama, I placed a willow tree-like stem and draped it over the front of the shelves.
I love the flow-y movement that this greenery brings to the hutch.
Adding a pop of green is always a good idea, especially when it comes to Summer decor. I feel like, without the green, this display would fall flat. It’s like the cherry on top of the sundae, finishing it all off in a very tasty way!
Step 7: Find Joy in Your Display!
Step back and look at the pretty display that you created.
If you see anything that needs tweaking or switching, that’s completely normal and a part of the creative process. I think I tweaked my hutch decor for a few days before I captured my final photos.
Collecting vintage decor enables me to be able to create these seasonal displays without spending a ton of money.
I encourage you to check your local thrift stores for simple decor that you can tweak to fit in a patriotic display. Jars, vases and baskets are all inexpensive pieces to thrift and decorate with for the seasons.
May these vintage patriotic hutch decor ideas uplift and inspire! Decorating your home is an expression of you. It takes loads of patience and practice along with a lot of trial and error to achieve a display that is pleasing to you. Don’t get discouraged when you just can’t seem to get there. I promise you will! Be encouraged to find the blissful freedom that Summer brings and choose to embrace it fully.
Leave me a comment! What do you like to display in a hutch or on shelving for Summer? I love hearing from you!
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