Monday, June 4, 2012

Make your own 1970s chairs

I did buy a few other things at the fair - a book and a couple of magazines. The book was from the stand next to Anna-Maria's, and when I showed Anna-Maria the pictures, she said, "Why didn't I think of that!? Will you scan the pages?"
So here they are - with all the colour illustrations, because I love seeing how 70s style was represented here!

The book is called How to Decorate a doll's house, by Eve Barwell, published by Studio Vista in 1975 (ISBN 0289 70509 6). The 70s was when dolls houses and miniatures really took off as an adult hobby, but this book was written for children (as was the rest of the Studio Vista How To series - How to Amuse yourself on a journey, How to Disguise yourself, How to Mend your bike, How to Start using tools, etc ).

The introduction does explain about scales, particularly 1 inch to one foot and 3/4 inch to one foot, and recommends sticking to whichever scale you choose. It doesn't give measurements in the directions for making furniture, but suggests using the furniture in your own home to check the right size for your doll's house.

A lot of tips are given about how to decorate the house, based on who will be using the room, when and how often ...

The first room that visitors see is the hall, so it must be welcoming. However, it's a room where no-one spends much time, so the colours can be strong and dramatic:

An elegant, clean and bright hall, with its purple carpet and vase of red flowers giving a splash of colour ... (I have mentioned before the house which we rented in 1978, which had purple carpets and red curtains - or was it the other way around? - in rooms in which we spent a great deal of time. Clearly the decorators had not read this book.)

Postage stamps are one suggestion for pictures - an idea I have used myself (for example, here and here, although they would look better hung!!) - but personally, I prefer pictorial subjects to Willy Brandt and the Queen ...

The living room, of course, is where people spend a lot of time, and because of this it needs restful colours such as blue, brown or beige ...

Hello, Mr and Mrs Dol-toi!

This living room is decorated in beige and brown with splashes of contrasting green; orange or yellow would also have contrasted well ... A brown carpet and beige curtains would have worked just as well as a beige carpet and brown curtains, but not brown carpet and brown curtains - that would make the room seem dark and small (!).

Here are the instructions for making the living room chairs - of cardboard covered with fabric on both sides, with either pipecleaners or cardboard cut-out rectangles for the arms and legs:

For extra chairs in the living room, take some cardboard packaging (the kind which used to be used round fruit; is it still??) and make bucket chairs:

The colour scheme for the kitchen is yellow and orange, with a red Venetian blind - bright, warm colours making the room seem sunny and gay:

The cupboards and fitments are white, to make them look extra clean and bright - but the floor is patterned, as a plain colour would soon look dirty.

Here are the instructions for making this bright, white kitchen table and chairs - from polystyrene trays and cocktail sticks:

A pretty and restful colour scheme for the parents' bedroom:

and bright, primary colours for the children's bedroom / playroom:

Master and Miss Dol-toi happily playing in their bedroom