But is it? Wouldn't the real 1950s home consist of an eclectic mix of furniture and styles - things that been handed down or patched-up? I don't know, but I do remember that my parents' 1960s home was a mixture of 1950s decor and grim, prewar furniture, all of which clashed horribly. Giving their house a 'contemporary makeover' wasn't an option.
But by the early 70s, my parents had become so sick of the 50s look, they covered their kitchen walls in a hideous, self-adhesive vinyl material called Fablon and painted the furniture orange. It was as good as it sounds.
As a result of my upbringing, I've always been quite hostile to 1950s design, associating it with poverty and austerity. But when I found a 1957 book called the 'Home Handyman' recently, I decided to try and be more open minded. I've added the original captions:
I remember having a similar table, which my parents kept until the late 1980s. The screw-on legs ensured that the table was always structurally unsound and any attempts to have a 'posh tea' for visitors was undermined by wobbling cups that sloshed tea everywhere. Not a design classic.
I was slightly distracted by the cheap-looking fence outside, but I agree that the sofa is a focal point. Just not in a good way.
I won't take issue with that, but I would question having a collection of dead butterflies displayed on the walls:
Before I worried about the floor, I'd do something about the walls:
I quite like this room, but I don't think the "dark piping" was a deciding factor.
This room, with its mixture of traditional furnishings, is probably more authentically 1950s than many of the rooms shown above. The chintz look is very unpopular today but my parents loved it and bought some rather striking nylon seat covers with a bright, floral design. I think I gradually unravelled them while watching the Six Million Dollar Man.
In conclusion, this book didn't win me over and I'd baulk at the prospect of living in a 1950s home. But although I may not appreciate the interiors of the 50s, I think the graphic design of that decade is much more appealing:
Whatever happened to Murphy?