1940s-style bedroom ideas

Written by liza hollis
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1940s-style bedroom ideas
Decorating your home in 1940s style can give it a classic, vintage flare. (Seat by the Fireplace image by JGlass from Fotolia.com)

Retro home design is a favourite for those who want to add a historic quality to the look of their home. If you are looking to design a bedroom with a vintage flair, look no further than 1940s design. Throughout the decade, 1940s style took many shapes -- some traditional and some more progressive and forward-thinking. Whether you are looking for a style that is elegant and refined or casual and functional, there is a decor style within 1940s interior design that is sure to meet your needs.

Hollywood Glamour

The glamour of the Hollywood era was alive and well during the 1940s. This is represented in home design as well as on the big screen. To achieve this look, feature furniture and accessories that are gold or chrome in colour. Accent with lighting fixtures with rounded, bulbous shapes, such as those you might find surrounding a mirror in a dressing room. Free-standing mirrors, or oversized mirrored wall panels, were common during this period and can be incorporated easily into room design.

Cottage Style

To achieve a sunny, cosy cottage theme in your bedroom that is reminiscent of 1940s style, choose pieces representative of this casual theme. Furniture made of wicker or rattan, light-coloured painted woods and upholstered pieces with small floral print motifs were used during this era. This quaint and feminine style was functional, but still featured delicate details such as lace trim, ribbon borders and gold or cream-coloured accents.


During and immediately following the second World War, a strong sense of patriotism penetrated the lives of many Americans. The idea of the "American Dream" had already taken shape in the nation was manifesting its way into everyday life. This passion extended to home design as well. To achieve a 1940s-inspired look, choose period furniture in red, white and blue colours. Also, hang flags or historic propaganda posters which spotlight the war effort.

Colours and Prints

The 1940s was a transitional time between the geometric prints of the Art Deco period that preceded it and the graphic, mid-century prints of the late 1950s and 1960s. During this period, sweet floral prints were especially common. Colours such as yellow, cream, mauve and other pastels were often the basis of a bedroom's colour palette. To achieve this look, put focus on the bed with a large, upholstered headboard in a solid colour. Throughout the room or on an accent wall, feature bright and floral prints. These floral prints can also be incorporated into the bedding, area rugs and wall art.

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