Making the Old New Again

Pairing modern fabrics with vintage furniture pieces


Photography by Richard Rasmussen


Lately, I keep hearing the phrase “what’s old is new again” and it has set me to thinking of ways in which that is true.

I noticed some clothing styles are a little more vintage, there were even shoulder pads at the Red Carpet and double-breasted suits!

I am wondering how this saying relates to your world of interior design and how you feel about it.

Thank you,


Dear Sara,

It is interesting to hear that old saying and I am guessing that it has always been true. You know there really aren’t many new ideas — just new takes on the old ones making it new with your creativity.

It is certainly big in my world of design today. We are using vintage pieces and making them fresh with colors and textures. For instance, I recently proposed taking a vintage-style sofa and two chairs and mixing it up with exciting fabrics in bold colors and patterns. I love the way the two worlds marry up and the thread that holds them together is the fabric — velvet!

We think of velvet as being a little dated, but that is far from the truth today! These velvets are cotton or silk and they range from looking like corduroy to being chic and glamorous. The intensity of the dye brings life and light and suddenly what was old is new again. I am also loving embossed leather (makes you think John Wayne and his saddles).

Hope you enjoy my remix of my Mama’s Tuna Casserole (old version).


Mediterranean Tuna-Noodle Casserole
• 4 cans good quality tuna in olive oil drained

• 1 can artichoke hearts

• 5 green onions

• Wide egg noodles

• 1/2 cup flour

• Salt and pepper

• 1/3 cup olive oil

• 2 red bell peppers

• 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese

• 5 cups whole milk
Preheat oven to 400 and lightly oil a casserole dish.
Boil noodles in salted water to al dente, drain and return to pot.
In heavy Dutch oven heat oil and add peppers, and season with salt and pepper until tender crisp. Add flour and cook stirring for one minute. Slowly add milk, stir until smooth and comes to a simmer. Remove from heat, add mixture to noodles in pot along with the tuna, artichoke hearts and green onions. Salt and pepper, and toss. Place in casserole and sprinkle with Parmesan. Bake until golden and bubbly about 20 minutes. Enjoy!

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