The past is and always will be a constant source of inspiration for all types of design — from the clothing you wear to the furniture and accessories you put in your home. And these two often trend in tandem. For example, just as high-waisted, wide-legged pants and bra tops have recently made a resurgence in wardrobes, so has '70s style decor in interior spaces. The era is back in a big way, interior designers say, and it could be a fun way to freshen up your abode this spring.
So what caused this comeback? "We are home more and desire our homes to feel more lived in, cozy, and visually comforting," suggests Eddie Maestri of Maestri Studio, who has a personal penchant for the style. "Elements of '70s decor such as textured weaves, caning, bold colors and layered patterns make us feel right at home, but still have the sophistication of Mid-century design."
And if you ask Sarah Stacey of Sarah Stacey Design, this trend was a natural progression from the recent popularity of minimalism in home decor. She notes that some of the most recent ways this can be seen is in the wave of rattan, terrazzo, and of course curvy geometric forms. "I think the minimalism of the last several years needed a little bit of a tweak and adding in those curves helped make things interesting again," she explains. "On the other end of the spectrum, '70s glam was insanely gorgeous and works well with the maximalism trend as well."
The 1970s brings to mind the idea of excess, but even if you're still more of a minimalist there are some key takeaways you can try to introduce the glamorous and funky feel of that time, no matter your current aesthetic — from some quintessential prints for your wallpaper, art, or accessories to the statement furniture that makes the vintage style feel so fresh. Read ahead for designers' best tips on what you can add to your space to give it that '70s vibe, in ways big or small.
'70s Style Decor: Graphic Patterns
"As the owner of a '70s modern home, I’ve found that bringing classic patterns and prints into the decor, such as houndstooth and grids, are versatile, timeless, and ever-so '70s," Maestri says. Depending on how much or little of these prints you want to include in your space, there are a few ways to try this. Want to go big? Follow Maestri's lead and try it on your walls. "I have had a blast bringing in some bold patterned wallpapers into the decor of my '70s modern home," he adds. "Bold colors, oversized patterns, and some toile, even with a bit of kitsch, makes the spaces fun and interesting."
Bold geometric designs can also make great accent pieces. Think wall art prints (artists like Frank Stella or Bridget Riley are a good reference), rugs, and throw pillows. Even a vintage coffee table book by one of the aforementioned artists can add a funky touch.
'70s Style Decor: Terrazzo
"Terrazzo had its heyday in the '70s, and there are so many fun ways to bring this element into home decor," Maestri says of the mosaic-like material. "From tiles, pottery, and even furniture, there are a variety of fun colors and aggregate mixtures that will give you a '70s, yet classic vibe."
'70s Style Decor: Rattan & Caning
Stacey notes that natural textures — like rattan and caning — have been some of the hottest furniture trends of late. The materials also give that indoor-outdoor appeal that makes any space feel like a staycation.
'70s Style Decor: Curves
Bold colors and patterns not really your thing? Stacey suggests keeping your palette minimal but embracing the '70s geometry trend in the shapes of your furniture. She recommends a "textured curvy sofa or chair in a neutral color," and says you can always add some colorful accessories if you need a little more oomph.
'70s Style Decor: Lucite
Lucite isn't exclusive to the '70s — it first rose to popularity a few decades earlier — but it's probably most synonymous with the disco era. Try it with your dining chairs, coffee table, or even a lighting fixture. Vintage sites like Etsy, Chairish, and 1stDibs stock a ton of authentic lucite pieces, but due to its current popularity, you can also find inspired pieces at contemporary home decor shops like CB2 and Anthropologie.
We only include products that have been independently selected by TZR's editorial team. However, we may receive a portion of sales if you purchase a product through a link in this article.