The roaring ’20s are back, and with them comes the art deco period once again. This period, marked by the sleek design and vivid colors with a velvety texture, is one of the most iconic design history parts. Many homeowners are drawing inspiration from the era where a couch can define a room. Here are the best art deco household designs you can create in your home, without pushing it too far into the past.
Pick An Accent Metal and Stick With It
The 1920s aesthetic is rife with shiny and beautiful surfaces. To avoid making a room seem too cluttered or busy, stick to only one type of metallic color per room. You can have a warm gold in your living room, copper in the kitchen, and silver in the bedroom or any other combination of these. Reflective surfaces were significant because they screamed money in a time where many didn’t have much. You got to admire yourself in the sleek surfaces as you walked by them.
Sleek and Hard Designs
Following through with the last note, sleek and stiff designs are big. A tall dresser with deep shiny wood and a lacquered surface can fit perfectly, but so could vintage lamps, mirrors, and art. Look for things that scream luxury without being too flashy. Try to think of it like camp fashion, nearly pushing the envelope but pulling back just enough that it’s fun and quirky. Stained glass was significant during the 20s, so don’t be afraid to replace a window or two and cast some colorful light.
Avoid Oranges and Ochres- Embrace Yellow and Peach
Because the 1970s were so inspired by the 1920s, leaning into orange or ochre colors could quickly muddle which era your home is supposed to be based in. If you love warm colors, go for a cooler red. If you’re not sure about a piece, and you’ve been considering it for a while, try to research bedrooms, offices, and living rooms in the roaring twenties and see if anything similar matches up with it.
Wallpaper Is A Friend
When I say wallpaper is a friend, I don’t mean farmhouse floral. Wallpaper was more vivid, like royal blues with gold accents, or deep reds with patterns in a darker red colored into their paper. Pick a wallpaper that matches the aesthetic you have planned out- or if you don’t have one picked yet, you can choose the wallpaper and then build out from there! Accent walls weren’t quite a thing, but if you want to modernize it by having a substantial fence through the wallpaper, you can do that. This house is your home, and being inspired by the 20s doesn’t mean you have to replicate it perfectly!
If you already have dark hardwood floors, then perfect! Just polish them and make sure they gleam. If you don’t, though, aim for furniture that replicates that feeling. Lower side tables and coffee tables made of dark hardwood with metal details can bring through that 1920s flavor.
If you have lighter hardwood floors, and you’d consider staining your floors, you can easily do this over a weekend. You save money by doing it yourself, but using a professional helps protect you against staining your belongings and ensuring that it gets sealed correctly. If you do it yourself, make sure to sample the stain’s color first before applying it to your whole floor. If you’re aiming for dark mahogany and up with light cherry wood, you’ll have to stain the wood all over again.
Embrace the (Almost) Minimal
The classic home we generally think of when trying to conjure up a thought of the 1920s is usually pretty spacious and empty. Your eyes are drawn to the detail of marble flooring, tall ceilings, beautiful art on every wall. Unfortunately, we can’t all turn our houses into mansions, so it’s essential to do what you can to embrace minimal while also creating a sense of spaciousness. If you have shorter ceilings, replicate the feeling of spaciousness by using tall curtains that draw the eye upwards. Mirrors, a very 1920s decoration, especially when they’re oversized, are a fantastic way to make any room feel larger.
Trim and Borders
Trim and borders need to be ornate as well! Although some homes did include gold detailing in these, you don’t necessarily need to have a metal finish on them to make it seem spacious. If you use too much gold, it might make your living room feel like the dining room of a Cheesecake Factory restaurant. Go for ornate and period similar trim and borders around your walls and ceilings; make sure they’re cut to fit and that they suit the aesthetic of the rest of your room.
Rich and Colorful Extras
Velvet was huge in the 1920s, leaving many to have it on nearly every surface. If you don’t want to replace your furniture with this fussy fabric, you can easily use it in other ways. Velvet curtains block out heat and cold while allowing you to darken a room. Velvet pillows are a pleasingly soft and luxurious feeling. Go for richer colors with velvet since it compliments the softness of the fabric.
Rich colors should be used through many of the details. Stick to one to two bold colors per room. A red and purple room, or a navy blue and emerald green room can go entirely as long as you choose your pieces carefully and work to ensure they match well together.
The 1920s were a tumultuous and wild time, much like the 2020s are shaping up to be. Take the time and care to bring the parts you like with you into your modern home, and you can keep a little bit of the fun of the 1920s alive.