Influential Interior Design: The Space Race

The 1960s style of interior decorating is now considered to be retro, although at the time it was thought of being very cutting edge and very modern. We now know that to a certain extent the interior design of the 1960s was influenced by the designs that were coming out of Italy: also emerging technology that was being invented in this decade all had an effect of how the overall design of a room was put together. This was perhaps no more evident than in the kitchen, where several modern appliances were being used.

Another factor that helped influence the interior design was the element of space travel and the space race. But perhaps one of the biggest influence with this retro type of designing was the attitude of the youth culture, and how that youth culture abandoned traditional ideas and concepts and in some cases actually attacking the principles that were held.

During the 1960s industrialisation was very rapid and to some degree this contributed to the design of some of the furniture that was manufactured. In a lot of cases the furniture and other furnishings appeared very metallic: modern and modular. It has become the source inspiration for the use of modern metal wall art as we see today. Perhaps the trademark of the 1960s is furniture that is very minimalistic and not really designed for any longevity. It was a decade that questioned many values and principles and this is often reflected in the way the general public went about creating and designing the rooms in their houses.

Interior design in the 1960s in the kitchens often featured many kinds of innovations, the kitchen often had many up to date appliances and work surfaces were very modern and took advantage of the technology available that enabled them to be cleaned very easily. Some of the other features in the kitchen also comprised of disappearing work areas that were concealed behind folding doors. More often than not the kitchen cabinets and cupboards were often painted in very bright colours. The kitchen also made use of clever built-ins, pieces of furniture for example a wall cabinet and sometimes even the kitchen table was actually built in and was anchored to the floor.

It was often very common to see it in people's lounges large purple rugs, as colour in a room was often bold and striking and by putting purple rugs into a room was often seen as making some kind of statement. Also very popular at the time were other rugs as they were very vibrant and striking that came from countries like India and Morocco. In the majority of homes most of the floors were covered with wall to wall carpeting and linoleum was replaced by vinyl flooring of the 'no-wax' type.

Curtains and cushions were made of very striking fabrics that had bold colours and more often than not had geometric shapes that allowed for the most visual impact. It was also not uncommon to find a sari that had found another purpose and was being used as a wall hanging or even as a modern four-poster styled bed-frame.

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