When those of us of a certain age think about the style of the 70’s and earlier we recall the furniture that we grew up with and no longer find attractive. Individuals in their 30’s and 40’s have now come to embrace and enjoy the look when choosing furniture and décor for their abodes.

tumblr_lxi0yaDhhq1qew3sbo1_500The series “Mad Men” did a great job of set direction period to the look that is now sought after in the design world. Catalogs like “West Elm” feature a 21st century take of the 70’s look. The following suggestions will help one re-create this look:

Current shades of brown, gold, orange and green are great choices. Pair orange with turquoise, sage green or bright yellow.

Geometric designs in art and fabric are in style now as well as owls. This look can be found at hobby and fabric shops.

Using local thrift shops, antique shops, your parent’s basement and eBay you can find great accessories and furniture to fit into your 21st century design. Mixing what you own with a few new accessories and furniture is a very personal look and not too staged.

Nina Reyes suggests a light pale blue or green for a pleasant, relaxing bedroom color choice.

Nina Reyes suggests a light pale blue or green for a pleasant, relaxing bedroom color choice.

Nina Reyes suggests a light pale blue or green for a pleasant, relaxing bedroom color choice.

Remember those sunny summer afternoons as a child when you would lie back on the green grass and look up at the blue sky and the clouds? Remember how peaceful and restful it was to see images in the clouds? As adults we still look to nature when we select colors for our homes. It makes sense that the best color to paint one’s bedroom is blue. Blue is soothing like the beautiful sky and water. Blue promotes restfulness and calmness.

Blue is also healthy for us at it can slow down the heartrate and lower blood pressure according to the rules of Feng Shui. Another bonus is that a soft hue of blue can make a room look more spacious. Use clean crisp white bedding like many of the high end hotels offer to make the room look less complicated. The white bedding can represent the clouds from our summers of our past.


Nina’s Color Suggestions:

Sherwin Williams Aloe SW6464-soft bluenina-reyes-color-suggestion

Sherwin Williams Jocular Green-green blue

living-room-with-sunlightBIG WINDOWS:
Wonderful views of tree lined streets or a garden erupting with tulips makes one feel connected to the outdoors and nature. Let the sun shine in our windows to lift our spirits and warm our hearts.

Who finds comfort in a straight back chair?! – Sit back in a cozy down filled cushion chair to read a good book or watch your favorite TV show. Make sure you have enough comfortable chairs or seating for six guests.

For an afternoon Packer game or the “Downton Abby” Sunday night PBS special, a small TV does not fit the bill. Buyers of TV’s always wish they would have purchased a larger TV once they got their new set home!

It is so much easier to relax when the dishes are done and the house is picked up. We all strive to be organized because it makes life easier if you know where to find something.

Nothing is better than listing to music on a Sunday morning while reading the Sunday paper. Background music at a party makes guests feel at ease and comfortable.

The smell of fresh bread or cookies in the oven brings to mind comfort that is why many realtors suggest just that when selling a home to make buyers feel at home. Cooking at home has become more fashionable than going out for dinner.

What is the quality of life if you have no one to share it with-entertaining family and friends and opening up your home gives us satisfaction.

The one private space we cherish is our bedroom-usually off limits to friends and family we can enjoy time alone to take an afternoon nap or read a book. The space need not be large- just right for 1 or 2 to get away and relax.

Foyer Neglect.

Don’t let your entry hall fall prey to neglect.  New homes that have attached garages use the back door as the entry so the foyer does not get used often thus “Foyer Neglect”.

Inproper Lighting.

The proper lighting makes the room a place you want to be in.  Vary the lighting in a room by adding dimmers and highlighting special features like a fireplace.

A Matchy-matchy Look.

Mixing patterns in carpet, window treatments and upholstered pieces gives a home a personality.

All White Woodwork.

An interesting look is white trim with dark stained doors or all white woodwork with a cherry red built in bookcase.  Don’t be afraid to bend the rules to get a unique look.

Everything Against the Wall.

Floating pieces of furniture (placing them away from the walls) creates a more interesting room composition and places people closer together.

The House of Beige.

Color makes us happy.  When was the last time you saw beige and smiled?  Don’t be afraid to try a new paint color.


Limit your collectibles in one location and collect until the space is comfortably filled.  Then STOP collecting or bring in one new piece and take another piece out.


Subway Tile:

During the 20th century Heins and LaFarge created a simple small rectangle tile to adore the tunnels of the infamous subways in New York.   Thus the name subway tile. The subway tile was known for its resistance to stain and germ absorption.  With color permanence and density they are an ideal choice for a sunny kitchen backsplash or for hygiene conscience homeowner’s bathroom.  Today’s subway tiles come in many finishes and colors.  Subway tiles used on walls or back splashes will give your home a timeless look.

l_68subway-tile-vessel-sinkTravertine Tile:

The Romans used Travertine tile to build the Coliseum so talk about using a tile that is historic!  Travertine tile is quarried out of Turkey and is from the limestone family.  Travertine is the most durable natural stone and can be honed and filled giving the tile a dull finish or brushed and chiseled for a more formal look.

Slate Tile:

When one thinks of visiting midcentury home memories of entry ways, breezeways and fireplace hearths adorned with slate tile come to mind.  The natural stone and random color choices were selected because of the natural beauty, durability and waterproof qualities.  Slate tile adorned many ranch style homes and was used in the Prairie style homes designed by Frank Lloyd Wright.

When building or remodeling consider the lasting and timeless look from the past.