Retro simply means looking backward and it most commonly refers to 1950s and 1960s style. The modern materials associated with this era — like plastics, nylon and acrylics — influenced 1950s homes, and designers of the time created furnishings and appliances boasting space-age shapes and never-before-seen colours.
Paint and slipcover
Camouflage your old sofa with plain slipcovers and give your walls a fresh coat of paint and you’re good to go!
Colours and patterns
The colours to choose are turquoise, orange, pink, purple, red with black and white. Patterns are bold, especially abstracts, florals and Retro’s ‘anything goes’ attitude means you can mix and match with abandon. However, to keep from being overwhelmed, try choosing one bold floral pattern together with a compatible abstract or stripe. Then pick a few of the pattern colours for your decorating palette.
Furniture and accessories
Retro furniture has a timeless quality. Couches have sleek lines and minimal upholstery, often set on a wooden frame. Another typical style is the chair — moulded from plastic and perched on a chrome pedestal. Tables are simple rectangles with rounded edges. Accessories have bold colour, chunky shapes, modern materials and chrome accents.
Retro on a budget
Budget decorating means thrifty shopping and doing it yourself. Garage sales, second-hand stores and flea markets are great sources for accessories, artwork and furniture. Women in the 1950s were thrifty homemakers — Mom sewed the family clothing and home accessories — so follow this tradition and stitch some cafe curtains or cushion covers.