Bold. Opulent. Flair. These are just 3 adjectives that can be used to describe one of the most iconic styles of the 20th century – Art Deco.
Originating in France in the 1920’s, Deco quickly became an international design movement that is still popular today, with aspects carried on from not only interior design but also furniture, fashion, jewellery, textiles, architecture and paintings.
After the heavy decoration of the Victorian Era, Art Deco welcomed a fresh new and modern twist on design that was influenced by a fusion of many different 20th century styles including Cubism, Bauhaus, Art Nouveau and Futurism. Unlike so many movements that had philosophical or political roots, Art Deco was purely decorative. It was a movement that was just about enjoying the scope of design with elegant and ultra modern glamour.
Luxury, sophistication and decadence are all part of the aesthetic in the Art Deco style, these being brought forward through a range of patterns, shapes, materials and colours. It was all about making a big statement, so bold geometric patterns with hard angles and clear, repetitive symmetry matched alongside expensive materials such as gold, brass, luxury lacquer and woods with high shine finishes became strong and lasting features of the overall aesthetic.
One of the most distinct trends of the Art Deco period that has always taken our fancy was the use of marquetry. The strong linear pattern and repeated occurrence of the ‘sunburst’ pattern worked perfect alongside the sense of decoration that was core to the Art Deco movement.
The Art Deco movement managed to leave a lasting impression on the world’s largest cities in the form of architecture. With the post-war movement being a moment of joy and hopefulness, the decorative buildings looming up in cities were seen as a source of joy and excitement for the future. With strong features such as their sleek linear appearance, bold geometric decoration, metallic accents, inlaid stained glass and use of bold colours these buildings remain impressive landmarks to this day.
Two of my personal favourites are the Hoover Building in London and the Chrysler Building in New York – both showing off a range classic Art Deco features leaving a feast for the eyes enjoyed still 80 or so years on.
If like us you are eager to add a hint (or more!) of Art Deco to your home then see below for some of our suggestions. Simply adding items such as curved furniture, scalloped patterns, hints of metal, slick lines and geometrics you can hark back to the Art Deco heyday. Art Deco is all about making a statement, so don’t be shy to just go for it.