Grab a seat and cup of coffee . . . it’s always on!
1940 Retro Decorating Style
Overshadowed by World War II, home design in the early 1940s was quite creative. As the European designers and artists fled to the United States, bringing many new ideas, development of new designs remained at a stalemate until shortly after the war ended. This was primarily due to material shortages. As production picked back up, people were ready to start new lives, which included Redesigns of the homes, especially rooms that would accompany guests.
Floral patterns were popular for bedrooms, living areas and wallpapered bathrooms. For the kitchen and dining room we had cherry or apple motifs, gingham, or checks, with roosters and chickens. I am still loving the roosters!
While primarily mix with the 1950s, it was the 1940s that introduced chrome dinette sets with Formica tabletops, as well as glass drawer pulls, and chrome and vinyl stools, into the home. Bentwood furniture – made by soaking or steaming wood and bending it into curved shapes and patterns – were coming into fashion.
Linoleum – especially in bold geometric patterns – was top choice for the kitchen. The material was strong and lasted many years, despite the fact it required lots of regular maintenance to keep it clean and shiny.
The 1940s brought to market the wooden radios and phonograph consoles, as well as fabric covered televisions to add luxury to a room. Families would often sit together to hear or see shows with their fashionable TV Trays (my grandmother bragged that hers had wheels), and guests would be included for momentous events.
The decade was riding on the edge of two primary color palettes. Art Deco – included the ’20s through the early ’40s and reflected a shift to lighter and brighter, more neutral shades with metallic undertones. Pastels were a huge favorite for home interior decorators.
While the mid- to late-1940s introduced many new design concepts and materials, most households still kept it simple when it came to the overall look of a room. Primary focus was put on the family – open space was key. Even in modest homes, updates were often made to “enliven” the look in the home turning the focus from wartime; sad and dark rooms to peacetime; happy and colorful interiors. Clutter-free was key, even in family rooms, bathrooms, and bedrooms as everything had its place. Living a free and simply life with clarity and purpose . . . That’s the Life of The Successful!
Peace & Harmony ~ Cheryl