Kitchen tables and chairs from the 1960s are having a comeback with their sleek lines, retro colors and space-age style. These midcentury modern dinettes can add a splash of Mad Men-era flair to a contemporary kitchen. But finding authentic vintage pieces in good condition takes some detective work.
We’ve gathered insider tips to help you track down the perfect retro dining set without breaking the bank. From scouring online auctions to digging through thrift store offerings, here are 10 tricks for scoring stylish and affordable vintage 1960s kitchen tables and chairs.
Tip 1: Browse Online Marketplaces
Some of the best hunting grounds for vintage furniture are popular online marketplaces like eBay, Etsy, Facebook Marketplace, and Craigslist. These sites make it easy to search for specific items across a wide geographic area. Using keywords like “vintage,” “midcentury,” “retro,” or “1960s” in listings will help surface prime candidates. Setting up alerts and saved searches can also notify you when new listings matching your criteria are posted.
Tip 2: Check Estate Sales and Auctions
Estate sales are a goldmine for finding secondhand vintage kitchen furniture being cleared out of homes. EstateSales.net provides listings across the U.S., allowing you to preview featured items ahead of the sale. Auction houses also frequently sell vintage pieces being removed from estates. The catch is these venues attract many competing buyers, so be prepared if you have your heart set on something.
Tip 3: Search Antique Stores and Malls
Brick-and-mortar antique shops and malls that specialize in midcentury and vintage furniture are prime real-world sources. comb booths thoroughly, as sought-after pieces may be tucked away or buried under more common items. And don’t be afraid to negotiate – many sellers expect haggling and you can often get 10-20% off just by asking.
Tip 4: Scour Thrift and Consignment Shops
It takes some dedication, but thrift stores and consignment shops can turn up amazing overlooked vintage finds. These venues are goldmines because they are constantly getting new inventory from donations and individuals cleaning out their homes. Make a regular circuit to catch newly stocked items before other shoppers scoop them up. Ask staff when vintage furniture gets marked down for maximum savings.
Tip 5: Find Specialty Retailers
Beyond general antique dealers, search for vintage furniture stores, midcentury modern decor shops, and specialty retailers focusing specifically on 1960s style. These niche businesses are likely to carry high-quality, curated selections. You may pay more but have access to rare colors and popular brands in excellent restored condition.
Tip 6: Watch for Curbside Finds
You’d be surprised what gets left on the curb for trash pickup. Keep an eye out for vintage kitchen tables and chairs being given away for free. Drive or walk through neighborhoods on bulk pickup days when people are cleaning out homes and garages. Be prepared to do some refinishing if the items are worn or damaged.
Tip 7: Network with Collectors
Connect with other fans of midcentury modern decor and 1960s style. Online forums like Reddit’s midcentury modern subreddit are great for getting tips on upcoming estate sales and leads on private vintage furniture dealers. Offer to buy pieces from collectors looking to downsize their stash of items.
Tip 8: Search Design Websites and Blogs
Retro renovation, Apartment Therapy, Design Sponge and other interior design sites often feature stories on where to buy vintage furnishings. Look through their venue guides, classifieds and store directories for new sources. Follow their suggestions and you may discover shops and dealers you’d never find on your own.
Tip 9: Be Flexible
Having an exact dining set in mind may limit your prospects. Consider mixes of vintage and modern pieces, different chair models, or tables that can be paired with other flea market finds. Simple improvements like new upholstery, paint, or refinishing can customize pieces to fit your style.
Tip 10: Have Patience and Persistence
Scoring the perfect vintage 1960s kitchen furnishings often requires diligence and dedication. Set up alerts and regularly check selling platforms new inventory. Be prepared to pass on pieces with condition issues or flaws. Don’t get discouraged–the thrill of the hunt is part of the fun of vintage decorating.
You can find stylish retro dining sets without breaking the bank with some savvy searching. From dealer websites to neighborhood curbsides, vintage 1960s kitchen tables and chairs are out there waiting to be discovered. Hunting down the perfect pieces will add lots of nostalgic flair to your contemporary kitchen.