Photo by Chad Chenier

Designer tip: Ty Larkins on mixing modern and traditional

“Many people make the mistake of getting rid of their antiques and starting over again to create something more modern, newer and fresher,” says interior designer Ty Larkins. The temptation is hard to resist: You want a clean new look and those heirloom heavy wood pieces feel like a relic from another life. But Larkins says to think twice before you toss out Grandmother’s sideboard.

“Diversity is really the magic formula to great design,” he says. “Therefore, you want to avoid having a look that is too one-dimensional and that reads as one note. All antiques and all new and modern are equally uninteresting, but just on different sides of the equation. A thoughtful and considered mix of furniture periods and genres, textures and artwork keep things feeling grounded in the past and relevant for how we live today simultaneously.”

To see a real-life example of how to live with antiques in an up-to-date way, check out the Larkins-designed interiors in the home featured in inRegister’s April issue, available on newsstands now.