In last week’s ’80s photo shoot post, a metal shelf was covered in 1980s Deco ceramics and highlighted by berry-toned art paper backing. Needless to say, some love and preparation went into this shoot, from the color choice of the ceramics to the over-the-top floral arrangement. But the shelf’s final design evolution wasn’t quite as, well…pastel. Let’s take a look at the journey of this metal furniture piece, taking note of two different ways to bring ’80s design to today’s home…
When we determined this shelf needed a redesign, it was holding an assortment of books and vases (can you spot the wilting carnation above?), as well as our collection of vacuum tubes, gifted to us by my husband’s beloved Grandfather. Items were placed on the shelving a bit haphazardly, while the only unifying factor was the presence of many clear objects. We liked the way the brightly-colored books popped against the clear-and-metal background, but a little organization was needed. I also knew I wanted to incorporate a bit of ’80s.
Then I decided to spotlight my ceramics in an ’80s-style photo shoot (featured in a previous post), and it was clear another approach was needed…
One way to bring the ’80s into a room is to go all out. Play it up, not only for nostalgia, but even a little bit for the kitsch. This was the tactic I used to celebrate the ’80s for the above-mentioned photo shoot, the results of which are now displayed on Mirror80’s About page. Lining the interior of each shelf compartment with a berry-colored piece of art paper was a step in the right direction.
This is a fabulously big statement, to say the least. One that can definitely hold its own. But some may say the bigger challenge is ultimately answering the following question: Can the ’80s be incorporated into an eclectic space–one that incorporates other design styles?
A Touch of ’80s
When it came to unifying our living room and acknowledging our practical need for the shelf to actually store books, we knew a slightly different version of the arrangement above was required. Furthermore, the all-pastel palate was making the red accents in the rest of the room (including a glossy side table) seem a bit out of place.
For the final version of the shelf redo (shown to the right), we opted to:
- remove the pastel backing from the shelf interiors
- color-code the books for a less cluttered effect
- bring back the clear vases and vacuum tubes given to us by Todd’s Grandfather–aren’t they cool?!
- Add some modern touches, like the potted succulent and the red faux-coral piece.
The collection of ’80s vases and wonderful artwork by Scott Nellis are still the focal points, but the arrangement blends a variety of items–some practical, others fanciful–and design styles. Here’s a closer look:
Whether you want a nostalgia-packed statement in your space or a more subtle approach to ’80s glam, a variety of options await you.
Which arrangement is your favorite: the ’80s pastel kitsch display, or the modern eclectic approach?