1959 vintage Drexel: Colonial lives, even heading into the 60s!

1959 — and see how colonial decor is still be running strong, as evidenced in these Drexel lines. “Litchfield” is in the bedroom, “Dutchess County” in the living area. Hey, how could you not be comfy cozy in this setup, guys! Now that it’s August I will do my single, monthly repetition of this Pam-ism: Mix up your interior decor! All modern is a bore. Keep your friends and family guessing what a nutcase you really are. Be a mystery!

This photo also excites me because (1) I found this exact same color carpet for my basement living room. Harvest gold rocks. And (2) we get to see more of that weird and wonderful paneling which we originally saw in this scary photo-post, also from 1959. I will have to see if I have periodicals from that year which identify what this paneling was all about – what would we call it, a “peeling bark white birch”?

Finally: I will reiterate another 50s Pam rule: No guns displayed in your homes, please. Very bad feng shui. Honestly, so are dead-people images (like that painting), especially in the bedroom. And, that iron arrow pointing toward the headboard, also probably a F.S. no-no. See, the longer I do this blog the more dogmatic I really do become. Stay tuned for August isms on pinch pleat drapes and wallpaper in your bathroom 🙂


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  1. says

    I suppose it must be comforting to know that one could gorge himself at this table and then c – r – a – w – l (or drag) himself to bed. It’s nice and close!

    I hear ya, Pam, about mixing up the interior decor. I’ve never had one “look” for our house, and our remodeling plans promise that to keep that trend. But hey, it keeps things interesting.

  2. magnarama says

    Anyone who’s been following the “Mad Men” series on TV has seen Colonial thriving in the early ’60s, in Don & Betty Draper’s suburban home. Its pine paneling and plaid wallpaper makes for a wonderful contrast against the high-end Danish Modern of Don’s office in Manhattan.

    That series is a Candyland for midcentury design junkies, from beatnik chic in Greenwich Village to the ‘burbs… it’s got it all.

  3. magnarama says

    Just thinking more about that gray/white paneling… could it be pecky cypress that’s been whitewashed or limed?

    I was at an estate sale recently in a house built in ’59 whose den and dining room were all done in pecky cypress (uncolored), and the “peckings” in it (indentations) looked very similar to these.

  4. says

    Pecky cypress! I learned something today. I have to find out more about this stuff! Anyone with it in their house – send me pics: pam@…

  5. Sumac Sue says

    In the very early 60s, my parents purchased a colonial-style dining set very similar to what is pictured, along with a matching hutch. My mom still uses these pieces, along with a coffee table and end tables that they bought at the same time.

    We have a mixture of furnishings, and most is from the 30s and 40s — the pieces other relatives got tired of or regarded as junk, such as a Hoosier cabinet my grandma used, my great-grandma’s oak dining table, and a wobbly tea cart my husband’s dad made in shop class. The look pretty good in our colonial style ranch, along with such things as the tacky stuffed country geese from the 80s that I could never part with…it isn’t just the style of the furnishings, but also the memories…

  6. says

    Sounds like Pecky Cypress is the answer!
    I was thinking more generically about whitewashed wooden colonial walls – sometimes still seen in barns.

    About interiors on film, I’m fascinated by the interior shots in the 1967 movie “How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying” Great use of color!

  7. says

    You know, I thought about writing this in the post, but then didn’t: I think that this is clearly a staged-shot. An interior designer setup for the advertising photo. I didn’t mean to suggest this as a real room layout. I just loved the elements. Although as you say, iluvretro, it could be a nice little apartment.

  8. says

    We’ve also seen these walls with modern!:


    I think you guys are right about the pecky cypress, but up till now I’ve always thought it was a kind of birch bark wallpaper:

    see – usawallpaper.com/ivfabibawa.html

    The wallpapers are much more subdued, though. Could be a nice way to get a similar look without the lumber, especially if anyone comes out with a peel and stick version. I’ve been loving the colonial-modern combos, and a wall of this stuff would be excellent.

  9. says

    Holey Moley, Courtney, you’ve got the site down better than me! Yes – that’s pecky cypress (how I LOVE that phrase!) in the modern Heywood Wakefield post! Way to eyeball it, girl!

  10. iluvretro says

    I agree about the guns, not my cup of tea either. I am loving this picture though but it seems to me that this would be better suited as a basement flat perhaps?


    • Ed says

      I dunno, the basement bar is crying out for a de-watted Winchester lever action hanging on the back wall, as a reference to the movie “Shaun of the Dead”. Strictly display, of course. The real guns will be locked up in an undisclosed location.

  11. LisaC says

    My mother just got a new dinning room suite and I look at the pic above ,and I believe the table that is sitting outside under an awning in the back yard is this table and chairs. Oh! my gosh!!

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