How to decorate a 1950s-style home

Written by chelsea fitzgerald
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How to decorate a 1950s-style home
Moulded plastic chairs were fashionable in the 1950s. (Hemera Technologies/ Images)

Decorating a home in the 1950s style is not a difficult task. Many retro accessories are available to create this type of atmosphere. Whether you live in an older home that was built in the 1950s or just want to duplicate the look, it is possible to furnish your home with vintage decor or reproductions from the decade. The 1950s was a time of renewal and enjoyment of peace after the end of World War II and the furnishings and decor of the decade reflect that.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy


  1. 1

    Find moulded plastic chairs to provide extra seating in your 1950s style home. Polished chrome, Formica and vinyl are other materials that work well with the retro style.

  2. 2

    Paint your walls in colours that were common in 1950 style homes, such as turquoise, olive, pale lemon yellow, smoky blue, burnt tangerine and a purplish grey. Use these colours in upholstery, drapery fabrics and as accent colours.

  3. 3

    Search garage and estate sales and thrift store for formica dining room table and chairs. These were trendy in the 1950s and are effortless to keep clean.

  4. 4

    Purchase "space age" looking accessories, such as orb lights, starburst or atomic ball clocks, hanging bubble chairs or other 1950s decor.

  5. 5

    Use silver-toned or metallic-looking picture frames to display 1950s genre posters such as James Dean, Elvis, or cars from the decade. Another idea is to frame LP album sleeves with your favourite musical artists of the 1950s.

  6. 6

    Find a jukebox for your game room or an old record player with vinyl records to play.

  7. 7

    Pick out a surfer motif to decorate a teen's bedroom or game room. Vintage surfboards, pictures of Tiki huts and Hawaiian scenes were trendy in the 1950s.

  8. 8

    Purchase appliances that have retro versions. Many were available as of 2010, such as radios, toasters or electric mixers. If retro versions are not available, buy appliances in silver finishes.

Tips and warnings

  • Avoid clutter in the room areas. In the 1950s, people did not have money to waste on accessories and decor. It was a simpler time and the 1950s style home should reflect that.

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