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The 70s Revival trend. Retro furniture for the contemporary home

It’s groovy, and it’s back in style. The ultra-funky retro furniture and décor of the 70s could be the perfect look for the fashionable contemporary home. Bright, colourful, bold and beautiful, with lots to love from retro sideboards to bold, bright wall colours – and did we mention macramé? Whether you lean towards glossy 70s style or the natural boho vibe, read on for our top tips on achieving this uber-cool look.
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Seventies Revival

1. Revive those 1970s trends

The beauty of the 1970s Revival trend is that there’s something for everyone, you can pick and choose your retro furniture – from boho-chic pieces to glossy, modern pieces. Some 1970s homes were all wall hangings, rattan, paisley patterns and macramé. Others were open plan and split level with clear plastic hanging chairs, plenty of vinyl and white globe ceiling lights. And many were a mixture of the two. If your home has original 1970s features such as wood clad walls, terracotta floor tiles, linoleum or fitted wardrobes, then you have a head start. That original 1970s ceiling-high stone fireplace you were going to rip out? Don’t, it’s right back in style.

Seventies Lounge

Paint and decorate – 1970s style

2.Painting your walls in the warm, bright colours of the 1970s will create that retro vibe in an instant. Think turquoise, purple, avocado, pea green, burnt orange, warm yellow, harvest gold and earthy brown. For a bold and funky look, use the colour block technique in your retro living room, simply paint two walls in different but complementary colours. If you dare, go ‘full 70s’ with wallpaper featuring outsize flowers, psychedelic patterns and 70s style graphics, including distinctive geometrics. Or create a statement wall featuring a single scene from nature, for example a forest of trees.

3. Fabulous 1970s flooring

If you’d like to create a boho 1970s interior consider terracotta tiles, flagstones or wood flooring with woven or sheepskin rugs. Also coming back into style, and straight from the 1970s, are wall to wall carpets or (at the very least) the classic 1970s shag-pile rug. Lino type flooring is making a comeback for kitchens, hallways and bathrooms – with a wide choice of bold, bright colours and patterns on offer.

SHOP PATTERNED RUGS

Bold Rugs

Make a statement with retro furniture

4.Classic pieces by furniture makers such as Nathan and Ercol are worth finding and treasuring – from the retro TV stand to the retro bookcase. The retro sideboard is a wonderful statement piece for your retro living room or dining room. Long and low in wood, with tapered legs, or more industrial in style with metal legs it adds instant 1970s chic. The drinks cabinet is in vogue again – a great use for your very cool 1970s sideboard. And nothing says the 1970s more than a built-in bar with some retro barstools.

SHOP WOOD AND METAL SIDEBOARDS

70's Sideboard
Ercol Nest

5. 1970s occasional tables

If you want to entertain in 70s style, choose retro furniture such as tray style side tables with metal legs, retro coffee tables in wood or the timeless pebble nests of tables from the Ercol Originals range. Or, if you’re feeling particularly boho, choose a statement Moroccan coffee table or use a brightly coloured retro footstool as an occasional table. Alternatively, go for that modern 70s look with glass and chrome coffee tables.

SHOP GLASS COFFEE TABLES

6. The chic retro living room

From the designer egg style swivel chair to the distinctive rattan Peacock chair, iconic seating defines the 1970s. The decade was famous for its ‘conversation pits’ – sunken lounge area filled with rugs and scatter cushions for the ultimate in relaxed comfort. Think retro sofas and retro armchairs in greens, turquoises or yellows with tapered legs and buttoning, or relaxed and luxurious velvet sofas in equally bold colours. For a compact living room, a retro style cuddle chair in a bright shade will add to the 70s vibe. Finish your retro living room with plenty of lush houseplants (real or artificial) and abstract retro wall art with geometric themes.

SHOP ORANGE SOFAS

Salvador Chair
70's Lounge

7. 1970s dining with retro dining chairs

The new homes of the 1970s pioneered open plan living, where the dining room and living room flowed into one another. You can create a chic 70s style dining room with a classic wooden retro table and chairs, or go modern 70s with a dining table that’s glass, ceramic and metal or wood and metal – perfect paired with colourful upholstered chairs with tapered wood legs or sleek designer retro chairs with cantilever style chrome or slim, shaped metal legs.

SHOP ERCOL DINING

ercol-dining-table

8. The retro bedroom

Depending on the look you are going for you can go for a vintage dressing table with an ornate mirror draped in colourful scarves or retro bedside tables that are ultra-modern and high gloss. Semi-fitted, sliding door wardrobes suit that modern 1970s bedroom look.

SHOP WARDROBES

70s Bedroom

9. Retro accessories

Lighting of the 1970s ranges from rattan or Moroccan metal to space-age ceiling lights and table lamps in chrome and plastic – not forgetting the iconic lava lamp. Channel the 70s look with an arc style retro floor lamp, a white globe lamp or a gorgeous ceramic table lamp with a retro base. Other 1970s inspired accessories include sculptural ornaments, textile wall hangings, bean bags, macramé pot holders, rattan lightshades and ceramic vases and bowls. And don’t forget generous piles of cushions in all shapes and sizes in a glorious mix of textures, colours and patterns.

SHOP CUSHIONS

Accessories

With the 1970s revival trend there’s something for everyone. Whether you go for hippy wall hangings and earthy ceramics or chunky modular seating and cool shag pile rugs, we hope you have fun creating that fabulously funky and colourful 70s look in your home.

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