1950s Dining Space Window Display
We had a blast participating in the 2017 Serving Up Style charity benefit for Molly's Fund. Six Portland interior designers were asked to each create a dining space inspired by a particular decade to be installed at the base of The Nines Hotel in downtown Portland.
We took on the 1950s, and challenged ourselves to select colors, patterns, art and furniture that all had origins during the decade. Aside from its ubiquitous-nature in modern design, we love mid-century style for how well it mixes into a wide-range of eclectic interior design styles.
You can read about the historic elements of our window below, and shop the look from our 1950's Inspired Collection at Christopher David Home.
Mid-century design is often characterized by bright colors like yellow, mint green, or turquoise; these palettes reflect only a segment of what was popular at the time.
To evoke a moody tone in our space, we drew on deep greens from the decade, including one from a 1953 Ford automotive paint palette, to bring a moody tone to our space.
Our custom wall covering was inspired by Sven Markelius, one of Sweden’s most iconic 20th century architects and designers.
The Prisma and Pythagoras geometric patterns are two examples of his 1950s textile designs, and represent the simple, yet vibrant geometric repetitions popular in the day.
The grey tones in the wallpaper were sampled from the area rug which we selected as a more free-form nod to mid-century patterns.
In a 1956, Eero Saarinen designed the pedestal collection to “clear up the slum of legs in the U.S. home.” The now-iconic wide base design was inspired by a drop of liquid.
Italian-born sculptor, Harry Bertoia designed his 1952 eponymous seating collection taking industrial steel rods and welding them into a somewhat-fluid form. He likened them to his art saying, "They are mainly made of air, like sculpture. Space passes right through them."
The 1950s saw the emergence of the Action Painting movement, including artists like Jackson Pollock, Franz Kline, and Willem de Kooning. Action Painting shifted the focus from the subject matter of the painting itself, to the action or process of creating it.
In our space, local artist and partner at Christopher David, Cosmin Bisorca, created an original oil and acrylic painting on canvas inspired by the gestural works of Franz Kline.
The launch of the Soviet Sputnik satellite in 1957 influenced a range of ceiling lights commonly seen with radiating or orbiting glass globes, especially prevalent in Italian design.
We’ve selected a more recently designed chandelier that has the same mid-century feel.
SHOP THE LOOK: Our 1950s Inspired Collection
What is your favorite decade to draw design inspiration from?