There is something both spectacular and endearing about retro design. On one hand, it resonates with the thoughts in our memory banks of our parents' or grandparents' homes, and, on the other, we grow green with envy when we see a sublime example of reworked vintage homes. Retro design is laced with nostalgia; it shows an era where politics were uncertain, and when wars had ended. Factories began to mass-produce products for the first time, and economies that had been long suppressed were booming once again.
There is a certain kitsch associated with this design style, as it makes us think of the 50s, 60s, and 70s. Strangely enough, designers had a little more freedom back then; colours were more widely used, patterns and textures clashed and bold psychedelic artwork hung on the walls. In fact, your personality was more or less reflected in your interior decorating skills. Nowadays, with the shift to minimalism, favoured by our Scandinavian neighbours, limited colour palettes and strict geometry don the glossy home decorating magazines, creating somewhat soulless and banal spaces.
On homify today, we are going to take you on a tour of a spectacular London apartment, which in itself, is laced with its own history. Formerly a bakery, this home, from floor to ceiling, oozes with style and boundless creativity. We hope that after viewing this beautiful ideabook, you will feel more comfortable with allowing more colour, vibrancy and life into your homes.
When styling an apartment in a retro style, it is only fitting that the chosen furniture pieces would match the era. As you can see, the designers from Russian for Fish have selected some timeless pieces from the late 20th century. The small translucent stacking tables, the minimalist armchairs and, of course, that stunning sideboard are all synonymous with the best, and most notable period of industrial design.
You may not notice it at first glance, but the floors are not tiled or lino, which is typical of the retro period. They are in fact, painted floorboards. Undeniably, it is one of the most stunning features of the home, boosting the flair and personality that is already apparent. Such is life however, these floors took a week to complete, but as you can see, it was completely worth the wait. Furthering the geometric charm are the playful corners, junctions and staircase, which, although blending into the walls, cause a small optical illusion to the viewer.
Consistency is key in the layout of this apartment. As the floorboards tell their story throughout every room, so does each piece of chosen furniture. Continuing with the 20th century design, we see yet another well-known modern chair—the Eames moulded plastic armchair. Here, no single piece overwhelms the other. Instead, they work harmoniously and in perfect unison. The artwork chosen lifts the black and white colour scheme, adding a pop of colour to a muted and a serene space.
The colour palette of the kitchen is a little more playful, but still retains the industrial appeal of the previous spaces. In this room, less is more; only the essentials are in sight. And, despite the fact the room is a compact living and kitchen area, there is no shortage of natural light or spaciousness. The designer has successfully made a long and narrow room appear wide and airy. This comes down to the obvious strategic choice of the layout and furniture. By using the sofa as a room divider, each element remains functional and retains as much natural light as possible in both spaces. We also love how the strict geometry has been played off against the curvy 60s style fridge and low-strung light above the table.
Last, but most definitely not least, we arrive at the kitchen. Of course, no modern home would be complete without a modern area to prepare food. Simple, but not in the slightest way clinical, this white on white ensemble of shelves and cupboards is the perfect place to end our tour. Just like a blank canvas gives way to creativity, so does this functional and practical kitchen area. Whether an avid cook, or takeaway fiend, this space provides the perfect aura and ambience to feel inspired and excited.