Friday, 1 July 2011

Fifties Style

Earlier this summer I worked with Kiera Buckley Jones on the Midcentury modern living room at the Royal Festival Hall.  Kiera's a big fan of the fifties and had pitched an idea to BBC Homes and Antiques to style a 1950's inspired home story, mixing vintage with modern in a period setting.  So early June we decamped to a gorgeous airy property in Elephant and Castle to set up and shoot for 3 days.

I love mixing old and new pieces, but balancing the proportions of the light fifties furniture in georgian rooms with very high ceilings, proved quite challenging.  Kiera, as always, worked her magic but its definitely something to consider when furnishing a large or for that matter small room. 

The full article is out now in August's issue of BBC Homes and Antiques but here are a few snaps I grabbed from the behind the scenes of the shoot and some tips on how to incorporate vintage pieces into your home: 

Display pretty vintage scarves in simple frames.  These ones are from Ikea, cheap as chips.

Mix old and new. This cute retro poodle lamp from Abigail Ahern sits happily alongside the yellow and brown tones of this vintage rose painting.

Vintage book covers and posters can be a great source of inspiration for design and decorating palettes.  These soft pastel shades are very fifties.

Its all in the mix.  Combining florals like this blind with bold retro print cushions keeps the look fresh and fun. Love the little woven chair.  

And not forgetting this little fella. Does anything says fifties more than a flamingo figurine? (Can an animal be a figurine...who knows?)  Actually he's a modern piece from Dwell, so he's more retro than vintage. What are your favourite elements of the 1950's and how do you mix new and old? 

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