Flowered 1950s Wallcovering

Mid-century inspired pattern

Flowered 1950s Wallcovering

Mid-century inspired pattern

Flowered 1950s Wallcovering Swatch

For the majority of people in the UK, the mid-century 1950s decade passed pleasantly enough; wages were rising, employment was readily available and slowly the country was getting back to normal.

So far as interior design was concerned, tastes tended to be less than adventurous with most modern people happy to create rooms that were clean, airy and had a light, uncluttered look. Some very creative and inspiring wallpaper was being designed, but for the most part homeowners were being conservative. The wallpaper shown here is, I think, typical of the type of paper that was being purchased during at least the later years of that decade.

My notes tell me that the background is lovely buttermilk while the motif is red with a chocolate stroke. These, of course, are very mid-century colours from the British Standard in use at the time.

The effect on the room is to create something rather bland and easy-on-the-eye but I think it was the sort of look that people wanted. All over the United Kingdom modern, well-constructed homes were being built that offered clean lines and open space and this decoration suited those rooms perfectly. Against the drab backdrop of war, which was still not far from people’s minds, this must have seemed the best way to create and enjoy the new decade.

If you would like to see larger versions of these designs and my other work then you can do so on my Flickr page, a link to which is here

1950’s Furnishing Fabric

Mid-century inspired 3D texture

1950’s Furnishing Fabric

Mid-century inspired 3D texture

1950’s Furnishing Fabric

Work is proceeding well on the 1950’s rooms with the bedroom and dining areas almost complete and work now in progress on the living room.

The image above displays the fabric that will be used for the living room sofa and has been developed to resemble, I hope, the type of textile that would have been available to a furniture manufacturer at that time.

Research in books and on the internet seems to show that fabric was mostly plain at this time although I am not sure this was the case. Before the war, furniture was very soberly patterned using in many cases a rather non-descript and non-confrontational floral. The reason for this was partly fashion and partly, I believe, because rooms were created darker with both less natural and less artificial light. After the war, rooms began to have larger and less cluttered windows and there appears to have been a definite trend for letting in as much light into as possible. Advances in lightbulb technology also meant that 100 watt bulbs were relatively cheap and so rooms were also quite light at night.

Because rooms became brighter and because of the optimism and general euphoria of the 1950s, furniture in general tended to become lighter in both colour and design. As the decade changed to the 1960s, furnishings began to use more interesting and less usual colours, for example, a very light grey was used – a trend that still exists today. These colours made people more conscious of the decorations in the room and, with the new interest in DIY, this led to interior design being within the scope of every household.

To foreshadow this trend, I have created a non-complex – all right, simple – pattern that creates a striped effect on the furniture. I have used quite a light colour which, as you will see later, looks good and correct in the living room.

I always keep notes of the colours I use for patterns although occasionally if I change colours I can forget to update them. However, this time I am confident that my notes are accurate so the background is graphite with the circles being middle brown, Congo brown, mid Brunswick Green, marble green and finally dark Admiralty grey. This seems a lot of colours for very little effect although it does create what I think is a pleasant, engaging and attractive striped design.

As the living room set is still under construction I have shown the pattern on a sofa and chair in my standard furniture set. As ever, you can also see larger versions of this and, of course, my other designs and patterns on my fabulous and ever-growing Flickr page which is here.

Easy Cushion Fabric Design

Mid-century inspired pattern

Easy Cushion Fabric Design

Mid-century inspired patternAlthough I refer to this as a mid-century style, it is a very simple repeat pattern that has been produced and refined for as long as there have been patterns.

However, that does not make it in the least boring and here I have used a modern stylized flower in place of the mid-century flower motif that would probably have been used and I have used colours which, while still from the British mid-century palette, are made to look more modern.

You will see that the design is in two simple variations to produce cushions that will sit well with modern styles and decoration and provide a comfortable, homely look to a room whether it has in it mid-century elements or not.

As ever, you can also see larger versions of this and, of course, my other designs and patterns on my fabulous and ever-growing Flickr page which is here.

Colourful Cottage Curtains

Mid-century inspired pattern

Colourful Cottage Curtains

Mid-century inspired pattern

Colourful Cottage Curtains Swatch

The mid-century period in Europe, particularly in the United Kingdom, was a time when there was an outpouring of the creativity which had remained bottled and subdued from the wartime decades.

This creativity tended to produce some quirky and imaginative designs, much of which found its way into fashion fabrics although fabrics for furnishing, curtaining and similar household needs tended to be perhaps a little less ebullient.

This design hopes to redress the balance and provide an interesting and perhaps humorous pattern based fundamentally on mid-century ideas and which uses colours from the mid-century British palette. The colours are strong and vibrant and the pattern bright and cheerful and so the obvious place for this was in my cottage living room as curtains.

This is an interesting pattern that has a lot going on and, from a technical point of view, it is also interesting because it is the first pattern that I have made using Serif Affinity Designer rather than my usual Adobe Illustrator.

As ever, you can also see larger versions of this and, of course, my other designs and patterns on my fabulous and ever-growing Flickr page which is here.

Comfortable Furniture Fabric Design

Mid-century inspired pattern

Comfortable Furniture Fabric Design

Mid-century inspired pattern

Comfortable Furniture Fabric Design Swatch

During the mid-century period, at least in the United Kingdom, furnishing fabrics were either quite plain or very low contrast. However, during the 1960s, when fashions began to change for the more exotic, furnishing fabrics changed although the change was much less noticeable.

This pattern owes a lot in both form and colouring to mid-century ideas and fabrics although, to bring it more up-to-date, I have made the motif a little larger and the pattern a little more noticeable

This has the effect of making the three seater settee look large and imposing and much more like a modern item of furniture.

As ever, you can also see larger versions of this and, of course, my other designs and patterns on my fabulous and ever-growing Flickr page which is here.

Curtain Fabric Mauve

Mid-century inspired pattern

Curtain Fabric Mauve

Mid-century inspired pattern

Curtain Fabric Mauve Swatch

I decided to make a design that, whilst mid-century in inspiration and in feeling, had perhaps a more modern look.

The background colour mauve is not a mid-century colour. There are various blues but the colouring does not extend far enough and so this was an interesting project for me in which I explored some new ground.

The pattern placed on the background is much more mid-century as are the colours and, if you change the background, the resulting pattern would not look out of place in the 1960s. On my Flickr page I have included a swatch which shows the same pattern but with a plain midnight blue mid-century background rather than the mauve muted tartan. If you look at this you will see exactly what I mean.

In fact, having thought about this, I will post tomorrow the same scene but this time with the midnight blue pattern curtain so that you can decide for yourself which one you prefer.

As ever, you can also see larger versions of this and, of course, my other designs and patterns on my fabulous and ever-growing Flickr page which is here.

Interesting Bedroom Wallpaper

Mid-century inspired pattern

Interesting Bedroom Wallpaper

Mid-century inspired pattern

Interesting Bedroom Wallpaper Swatch

This wallpaper was designed as bedroom wallpaper for a room that does not require a loud paper and which similarly does not require a quiet one.

The motif and the colours are both mid-century and the overall look of the pattern could also be considered from that period although I have tried to create a design that looks up to date in the room.

It is not a loud pattern that is intended to be used on a large-scale and provide a wide-awake, immediate challenge to the visitor and by the same token it is not intended to be a quiet, restful design intended for a very dedicated sleeping room.

These days rooms tend to double or even triple in usage and frequently a bedroom is also a study and often also a lounge and a room in which friends are entertained. To use a particularly loud or a particularly quiet pattern in a room such as this would be to make it look odd and out of place and so this pattern is neither of these. However, it is, I hope, an attractive and entertaining design which would look the part for any of the activities mentioned.

As ever, you can also see larger versions of this and, of course, my other designs and patterns on my fabulous and ever-growing Flickr page which is here.