50s living room: Soothing, modern color ideas from a 1954 Armstrong ad

I am now the proud owner of a binder of large, vintage 1954 Armstrong advertising comps — created by Batten, Barton, Durstine & Osborn, Inc., and signed off by Max Banzhaf in Floor Division National Advertisements. Pretty cool, huh?

Meanwhile – readers had been asking for more living room ideas — and I found some great ones in here.

In this modern-yet-classic interior, the designer begins with a very neutral brown/wood backdrop, adding medium blue, chartreuse and smalled punch of red to the mix. Overall – a delightful yet easy-to-live with look.

Click to enlarge and there are some fun things to notice:

  • Horses here and there
  • Pinch pleats that don’t take themselves too seriously
  • A peak into the kitchen, with the chartreuse carrying into that space
  • Look at the floor as it also transitions into the kitchen; there’s a change in the tile color to redefine the new spaces.

Check out the two books of Armstrong interiors — Inspiring Interiors from Armstrong 1950s and Interior Solutions from Armstrong the 1960s.

Meanwhile, I’ll feature more from my proprietary stash (different from what’s in the books) over time.


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  1. iluvretro says

    I like the way the carpet curves near the ranchslider and the sofa pieces seem to be on an angle. The whole decor and it’s colours really work.


  2. says

    Thanks, Amy. How does the living room look on you monitor? On mine, the photo scan is Super-Real. As in, surreal. I like it! I have to figure out how to get my camera to do that on purpose.

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