1970s Interior Design: 11 Tips for Reviving 1970s Style
If you're like me, you may have a love-hate relationship with the 1970s. While some aspects of the decade were cringe-worthy (think big hair and psychedelic patterns), others were downright stylish. If you're looking to add a touch of 1970s flair to your home, here are 11 tips for doing so. Happy reviving!
What were the defining moments of the 1970s?
The 1970s were a decade of great change. The world saw the end of the Vietnam War, the Watergate scandal, and the oil crisis. In addition, the United States experienced its first-ever presidential resignation when Richard Nixon stepped down in 1974. These events had a profound impact on the country, and they shaped the way Americans view politics and government. The 1970s were also a time of great cultural change. The emergence of disco and punk rock, along with the popularity of movies like "Saturday Night Fever" and "The Godfather," helped to define the decade. In many ways, the 1970s were a time of transition, and the events of that decade continue to have an impact on American society today.
11 Tips to Achieve 1970s Style
1. Embrace functionality and comfort with mid-century modern
Mid-century modern style is having a moment and it shows no signs of slowing down. This distinctive style — which originated in the 1950s — combines functionality with comfort and a minimal aesthetic. And while it was once considered dated, mid-century modern furniture is now coveted by design lovers for its clean lines and simple forms.
Today, the mid-century modern style is more popular than ever, and the look is easy to achieve with some key pieces. A sofa with clean lines and tapered legs are essential, as are armchairs with a similar aesthetic. A coffee table with angled legs is also a must, as are side tables with hairpin legs. To complete the look, add a few vintage-inspired accessories, like a retro clock or an abstract sculpture. With these pieces in place, you can create a stylish and inviting space that pays homage to the past while still feeling fresh and modern.
2. Choose handmade vases and ceramics
In the 1970s, many people were interested in buying handmade vases and ceramics. The trend was fueled by a desire for more unique and personal home decorations. Handmade vases and ceramics were often seen as being more artful and expressive than mass-produced items. As a result, they became very popular among people who wanted to add a bit of personality to their homes.
Today, the popularity of handmade vases and ceramics has continued to grow. Thanks to the internet, it is now easier than ever to find unique and beautiful pieces from around the world. Whether you are looking for a one-of-a-kind vase or a piece of art to hang on your wall, many talented artists specialise in creating handmade vases and ceramics. Finding antique ceramics is easy through sites like Facebook Marketplace, Gumtree or even at places like car boot sales or vintage fairs.
3. Keep it playful with floral wallpaper
In the 1970s, wallpaper was all about fun and whimsy. Bold colours and over-the-top patterns were all the rage, and floral designs were particularly popular. Today, wallpaper has made a comeback, and there are many ways to incorporate it into your home decor.
For a retro-inspired look, try hanging wallpaper with a bold floral pattern. You can use it to create an accent wall or cover an entire room for a truly eye-catching look. Floral wallpaper is also a great way to add a touch of colour to a room. If you want something a little more subdued, look for designs with smaller blooms in soft colours. Whatever style you choose, floral wallpaper is a great way to add personality to your space.
4. Be boho with a swing chair
Swing chairs were all the rage in the 1970s, and they're making a comeback in a big way. These fun and stylish chairs add a touch of bohemian flair to any space, and they're perfect for lounging around in style. Whether you're hanging them from a tree branch or suspending them from the ceiling, swing chairs are a great way to add a unique touch to your décor. And if you're looking for an ultra-cosy spot to curl up with a good book, there's nothing better than a swing chair! Whether you're channelling your inner hippie or just want to add a bit of fun to your space, swing chairs are the way to go.
5. Rattan is non-negotiable
In the 1970s, rattan was all the rage. Whether it was used for furniture or baskets, this material added a touch of texture and natural beauty to any space. Today, rattan is enjoying a resurgence in popularity, thanks to its timeless appeal. Whether you're looking for a new coffee table or a statement piece for your living room, rattan is a great option. Not only does it add visual interest, but it's also durable and easy to care for. If you're looking to add a bit of retro style to your home, don't forget about rattan. It's the perfect way to give any room a touch of '70s charm.
6. Don’t forget about houseplants
For many people, the 1970s were a time of free love and Woodstock. However, there was another trend that emerged during this decade: the popularity of houseplants. Initially seen as a way to add a touch of nature to homes and offices, houseplants quickly became coveted for their ability to purify the air.
Studies have shown that common houseplants such as peace lilies and spider plants can remove harmful toxins from the air, making them ideal for homes and workplaces. In addition, houseplants help to increase humidity, which can be beneficial for those suffering from dry skin or allergies. So if you’re looking for a stylish way to improve your health, don’t forget about houseplants.
7. Combine rough and soft textures
Stone, glass, and fur were all popular materials in home décor during the 1970s. Stone was often used for fireplace surrounds and accent walls, while glass was used for coffee tables and shelving. Fur was a popular choice for rugs and throws, as it added a touch of luxury to any room.
Today, these materials are still popular choices for home décor. Stone can be used to create a rustic look, while glass can add a touch of elegance. Fur can still be found in many homes, though it is often used as an accent rather than a focal point. By combining these different textures, you can create a unique and stylish space that is reminiscent of the 1970s.
8. Use wooden 1970s furniture
The 1970s were a decade of experimentation in both fashion and furniture design, and as a result, some truly unique pieces were created. Whether you're looking for a conversation starter or simply want to add a retro touch to your home, incorporating some wooden 1970s furniture into your decor can be the perfect way to do it.
From colourful bean bag chairs to sleek Brutalist-inspired tables, there are plenty of options to choose from. And best of all, thanks to the recent resurgence in popularity of 1970s-style designs, it's easier than ever to find high-quality pieces that will stand the test of time. So if you're ready to give your home a retro makeover, don't overlook the classic appeal of wooden 1970s furniture.
9. Choose warm tones like orange
The 1970s were a decade of bold experimentation when it came to home decor. Colour was everywhere, and homeowners weren't afraid to mix and match different hues. While many different colour palettes were popular during this era, one of the most striking was the use of warm tones like orange. Orange is a vibrant colour that can add instant warmth to any space. When used in moderation, it can create an inviting and energizing atmosphere. If you're looking to add a touch of 1970s style to your home, consider using warm tones like orange to create an eye-catching and unique look.
10. Create ambience with 1970s lighting
The 1970s were a decade of big changes and bold statements. From disco to shag carpeting, the era was all about making a statement. And when it comes to lighting, the 1970s were no different. Whether you’re opting for a retro-chic look or just want to add a touch of nostalgia to your home, 1970s lighting is the perfect way to do it. Below are some tips for how to create an ambience with 1970s lighting.
One of the most iconic styles of 1970s lighting is the disco ball. These glittering spheres were often seen in clubs and dance halls, and they’re sure to add some sparkle to your home.
If you want to go for a more subtle 70s look, consider investing in some string lights. These can be draped around your living room or bedroom to create a warm and inviting atmosphere.
And if you want to make a statement, go for a floor lamp with a colourful shade. These pieces were popular in the 70s, and they’re sure to add personality to any space. Whatever route you choose, 1970s lighting is an easy way to add some vintage flair to your home.
11. Don’t be afraid to blend patterns
The 1970s were a decade of bold fashion choices, and that included patterns. Florals, stripes, and other prints were often combined in eye-catching ways. While some may be hesitant to mix patterns, the key is to choose complementary designs and colours.
For instance, a floral print with large blooms can be paired with a striped shirt in muted tones. Or, for a more daring look, try mixing a geometric print with a bold animal print. When done well, blending patterns can add interest and style to any outfit. So don’t be afraid to experiment with different combinations - you might just find your new favourite outfit.
The 1970s were a decade of bold experimentation in both fashion and furniture design. From disco to shag carpeting, the era was all about making a statement. And when it comes to interior design, the 1970s were no different. So if you’re looking to add a touch of retro style to your home, consider using some of these tips. From choosing bold colours to mixing and matching patterns, there are plenty of ways to incorporate 1970s style into your home. So get creative and have fun with it - after all, that’s what the 1970s were all about.
Intrigued by retro interiors? Read more about the history of interior design through the 18th, 19th & 20th centuries:
Interior Design Through the Ages: The History of Homes
Georgian Interior Design: 10 Steps to a Gorgeous Georgian Home