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Nathan Thomas

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Looking Back: Design From the 1970s

Posted: 09/20/2011 2:26 pm

When first asked by Huffington Post/Stylelist Home to write for them about interiors, trends, DIY tips, etc., I jumped at the opportunity. One of my absolute favorite things to do is buy a stack of new shelter mags from Casa Magazines on Hudson Street and quickly get to my desk and thumb through the glossy pages of absolutely magical and not so magical interiors... I am constantly wowed by what I see, what other designers are doing, and what trends just wont go away... like a prosecco hangover! So, I thought, what a great way to jump in to this world of "blogging," a.k.a. -- the unknown to me -- mind you, updating my Facebook status is daunting enough and simply leaves me questioning why I need to update my status. Does anyone really care that I just woke up and am contemplating what to eat for breakfast, or if I can't figure out what shoes to wear? Ewwwwww, I meeeeeeeeean really.

That all said, I want to make sure that my 'contribution' to this website is something fun, honest, from my POV, and hopefully a bit intelligent... it should read as the same way I would converse about an image with a colleague, etc. etc. etc... Listen, don't get me wrong, all of you out there who tirelessly let the world know what you think is hot, and where the pulse may be, I applaud you, but I don't think it is all that necessary for me to give readers my thougths on the newest sofa from blah blah blah furniture designer or store. Not my thing.

That is exactly why I have chosen the road less traveled, I think, and at least for this first round, wanted to examine vintage interiors from the decade I was born. The '70s to me have always defined this sort of fascination with something I didn't get to fully experience. HELLO -- dont we all long to know what it must have been like to see Bianca Jagger (image linked NSFW) arrive at 54 on a white horse? I do! What I found with these select images was something magical, free, lacking of austerity, full of confidence and in general uber CHIC!

So -- I hope you enjoy my comments, thoughts, ideas and links until the next entry!

Okay kittens -- obviously, the first thing that JUMPS out of this image (third from top) is that screeeeeeeeaaaaaaaaming wallpaper. My demented self quickly jumped to the 'slumber party' fun of what does that print say backwards or translate to while in the dark looking at a mirror with only one candle on listening to Black Sabbath? And sure enough! Look at the reflection in the glass of the coffee table -- Can anyone say Iron Maiden and their epic song "The Number of the Beast"? Haaaack! Okay -- too much? Back to interior design please... I am loving that paper and the graphic quality of it. Reminds me a Brooklyn based company Flavor Paper. Check 'em out if you are looking for individual, not your run-of-the-mill patterns on paper. Okay, so that's done with. How fantabuloso are those blue leather chairs?!?!? I meeean really! Love how they are paired and and the tubular steel framing. Very reminiscent of hot shot furniture designer Milo Baughman, whom some love and others dislike. Okay, whatever -- start designing some furniture and then get back to me.

The daring quality of that blood red wall-to-wall carpeting is gegegegennniusss! Okay -- the green and red is starting to hurt my eyes a bit, but I love the modern feel of this and don't see why more of us are not out there installing wall-to-wall carpet in great colors vs. shopping for these oh so boring off the rack 'area rugs' from you know where... Look, I live in a tiny Manhattan apartment and constantly battle with the NOT so fabulous run-of-the-mill oak plank flooring. Solid area rugs or wall-to-wall is a quick and affordable move that you don't have to marry. What is that hit song? Oh -- "call 1 800 EMPIRE today". Such a good little jingle....

Uhhhhhh... can anyone say (second image from top) Roman & Williams? We all know them for their impressive interiors and instinctual approach to architecture and interiors, including such notable rooms as the Boom Boom Room (is that still what this heavenly saloon is called??) the posh redux of Philippe Starck's famed Royalton Hotel, their lovely little gem of a coffee shop on Washington Street, Kava and a strew of others... The above just happen to be some of my faves and worth checking out if you have not yet... This room is just beyond to me. I am simply loving the underlit sofas and coffee table. Wait! is that a giant 'H' for the table? Maybe it is the buckle of an Upper East Side giant's... How cool would you feel chillin' in this room? Looking at cool objets, trying to locate the loch ness monster in that aquarium, making sure NOT to drop anything on that white rug, or maybe polishing the solid marble walls... Living for this room! Obviously this is not a DIY room, nor do I have many tips on how to replicate.. simply because this room is too f'@#$ing cool to replicate. Don't try this at home -- leave it to the professionals.

This interior made me do this!!!! Holy "Honey I Just Threw Up On The Sofa and Rug!" moly! Is this where that ever-so-controversial CK ad was shot... ???? I think so. Well listen here, readers -- this is a prime example of "Do the curtains match the drapes?" Or is it? Maybe the sample room at the D&D misread the sample requests, or better yet, the purchase orders went to the wrong workrooms... There is something fantastic about this in a weird way. The bookmatching of the wood paneling is sort of fabulous -- please read this. I love this techinque also when used with stone slabs -- very popular in finance building lobbies on Park Avenue. A slick technique that can elevate an interior from "drab to fab." Just kidding -- I cannnnnot stand that phrase! Talk about stomach discomfort.... That all said, I do think there is a way to make this room cool -- grasping for air? Okay -- what if that Mars 2012 Restaurant of a fireplace were reconceived in an updated material? I could see it in stone or a cool porcelain mosaic that you can pick up from any big box home store like Homo Depot or Lowes. Yes -- that TV is weird but at least its not a 3-D telly....

 
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