The 1940s were a tumultuous time. It is impossible to understand those years outside of the context of WWII. The war not only defined the decade but from a design perspective, split it virtually in half. During the first half of the decade, new design was halted, as supply shortages and rationing demanded that all available resources -- material and otherwise -- be directed towards the war effort...
I don't know about you, but I love watching baseball games. What is less easy to love, though, is sporty decor, which becomes cheesy very quickly. Here are a few examples where America's pastime looks as good in your home as it can on the field.
American Art Deco was a melting pot style, a mixture of French luxury, international exoticism, and authentic American consumerism. Associated with the efficiency of the machine age, American pieces referenced cars, speedboats and skyscrapers, among other modern marvels. Fashionable from the 1920s until the Second World War, the style helped define the architecture of American cities, and it also helped move merchandise during the Great Depression. Let's take a look at this classic American style.
The USA is a big, beautiful country, with design destinations from coast to coast and nothing is more American when it comes to summertime travel than the road trip. So, in honor of our love of design and the lure of the open road, we're building a few suggested itineraries for style-centric trips. First, up, the Northeast. Pack a bag, pop on your sunglasses, don't forget the camera and be sure to leave room in the trunk for some stellar secondhand finds…
American style, like our citizens and cuisine, is hardly homogenous. Books on the subject are equally vast and varied — so much so that I bet no two Apartment Therapy writers would have the same list, which would be different than yours. With that in mind, here are 16 books that create a shelf on American style that is both informational and inspirational.
It is easy to dismiss the 1970s as "the decade that taste forgot". But to do so would be to overlook the decade's contributions in architecture, furniture design and interior decorating. After all, with the Bad and the Ugly there is usually some Good. A more thorough examination of this period is particularly worthwhile today, a time that (like the 1970s) is burdened by recession, corruption, and high unemployment rates; a time of renewed environmentalism and disenchantment with material excess. And like our early 70s counterparts, we too are emerging from a period dominated by sleek, minimalist modernism in interior design.
A Federal period room at the Metropolitan Museum of Art
By the time America was officially independent from Britain, centers of furniture production were already developing up and down the Eastern seaboard. Wealthy American customers would still occasionally import goods from Britain and Europe when possible, but were increasingly turning to accomplished local workshops in cities like Boston, New York and Baltimore.
Ethan Allen and American style—quickly, what comes to mind? Did you think "old fashioned"? Colonial? Fair enough. From a Vermont sawmill, Ethan Allen built its business and stellar reputation crafting the traditional Early American-style furnishings that were well loved for the greater part of a century. But it's a different world now—and it's definitely a different Ethan Allen!
Long before John Lennon made round eyeglass frames modern, Benjamin Franklin wore them and improved them into bifocals. While in Paris, Franklin cannily kept to his natural locks instead of wearing powdered wigs and he still won over the French. He edited the first draft of the Declaration of Independence, and wrote the line "We hold these truths to be self-evident.” Often called "The First American," Benjamin Franklin is also an American Style Icon.