creative interior design

1990s Living

Creative Interior Design
A Complete Guide to designing and decorating your home
Ward Lock Limited
1994

Here is another book on home decorating. This one is from the 1990s and has a pastel country look. The overly pink softness feels odd – almost like you were living in an Orange Julius shop. I guess I don’t think of a pink/orange palette as particularly appealing. But I digress…

This isn’t as bad as some decorating books we have featured on our site. (See examples here, here, and here.) The point is that these materials are subject to fashion trends. These books need to be regularly weeded and updated.

new young ideas in decorating cover

Groovy Teen Decor

New Young Ideas in Decorating
Walton
1970

Groovy teens everywhere will want to get their own rooms in shape…just like Grandma. All the decorating fads of the late 1960s and the early 1970s are here. Street signs? Check. Beaded curtains? Check. Gauzy drapes? Check. Peace sign? Double check. In 1970 this would have been nice choice for the young adult collection. The entire book reminded me of Rhoda’s Minneapolis apartment from the Mary Tyler Moore Show.

colors at home

Color My Home

Your Colors At Home
Decorating with Your Seasonal Colors
Smith and Gilbert
1985

In the 1980s, having your colors done, was quite the thing. I remember quite a few books and tv talk show segments devoted to figuring out color schemes worked for your skin tones. People were either a Summer, Winter, Fall, or Spring. I remember trying to figure this out for myself and coming up with nothing. I still don’t really understand how this works.

1001 decorating

1,001 Decorating Ideas

1,001 Decorating Ideas
Carter, Editor
1972

Yet another book of decorating ideas circa 1972. It’s still got a groovy vibe but its early enough that avocado green and harvest gold haven’t made their mark yet. The decor features a room by room plan for updating your home. My favorite is the carpet of what looks like Astro Turf in the kitchen. Bright colors dominate and the wall accessories are overdone (this is my way of saying ugly).

creative decorating book

Color Me 1970s

Creative Decorating
on a budget
Better Homes and Gardens
1970

I really love the decorating books we have on our site. I think just about everyone I knew as a teen was either decorating in that awful avocado green or the harvest gold yellow for their color scheme. This book at least features some more eye catching color, but the effect is over the top. I don’t think I could relax in any of the rooms presented. Too much matching colors or print between walls, furniture, and window treatments is just too much.

family room

Retro Design Help

Family Rooms, Dens, and Studios
Sunset Books
1979

Are you a retro hipster writer looking for that special space to create the next great American novel? This book has lots of ideas for converting that corner, basement, or garage into your studio. Most of the ideas are for small offices. I counted no less than 10 pictures of typewriters artfully placed on neat desks. I am convinced no one really does actual work in these spaces; they just look too tidy and are created to make people like me feel bad for not staying better organized. But I digress.

While decorating is a matter of style, there is a function to specialty rooms that need to consider changes in technology. While the concept might be okay, modern offices – even home offices – have a completely different set up for modern technology. Where do we put the printer/fax? How about all the electrical requirements for modern tech? I don’t think an extension cord is the answer.