The H&A 1950s living room - part one

By Rosanna Holmes,
29th March 2011 - 16:50
A
a
-
Claire Randall, Roadshow reporter, Bletchley Park, July 2009
next blog custom article
And so the search begins: stylist Kiera Buckley-Jones starts sourcing wallpaper and furniture for the H&A living room 

At last summer's Vintage at Goodwood, organisers Wayne and Gerardine Hemingway loved the Homes and Antiques 1950s living room so much, they have asked us to be involved in their Museum of 51 at the Royal Festival Hall.

 

Part of the Southbank Centre's Festival of Britain 60th anniversary celebrations, the Museum of 51 will be open from 22nd April to 4th September. Exact details of what will be on show are still under wraps, but expect a host of original photos, memorabilia and artworks from the Southbank Centre's archive and from public and private collections around the country.
 
And of course there'll be our 1950s living room, which we now have just under four weeks to create. Time to get cracking! I’ve already compiled mood boards with the overall feel of the time I want to capture, which is the optimism of a post-war Britain looking towards a bright and modern future. Last summer, I was lucky enough to find a decorating guide from the era at a car boot sale for 50p, and this, along with other interior design books of the period, has proved to be a great source. The use of colour is the thing that stands out the most - no Farrow and Ball ‘Elephant’s Breath’ for the 1950s housewife, it’s all bold pattern and primary colours.
 
 

Next, I put a call in to Sanderson, which has just released a collection of eye-catching atomic-style fabrics and wallpapers based on original designs from the period, then Ercol (the ‘studio couch’ is a show-stopper) and Heal's, which is selling the 50s-inspired ‘Dinky’ armchair in Sanderson’s 'Festival' fabric. Happily, all are excited to be involved. And then it's on to the practicalities: where shall I put the Ercol sofa? G-Plan room-divider? Do I need a television, a pot plant? All elements need to be considered.
 
It's going to be a busy few weeks, so keep dropping back and I’ll keep you posted with developments.

More blogs
The H&A 1950s living room - part two
The H&A 1950s living room - part three