After talking about the psychedelic colors of the 60s, let’s move on to the next decade—the 70s. For this, we prepared a color palette with bright orange and blue, as well as light browns and greens.
Major Events in the 70s
If the 60s were about political mayhem and cultural turbulence, the 70s saw more of that and economic upheavals as well.
In the US, antiwar sentiments and counterculture flourished with the hippies movement in the beginning of the decade. The hippies advocated for “make love, not war”. But this gave rise to a new kind of conservative populism that pushed back against what was perceived as a welfare state and also desegregation plans.
In the Philippines, we had our own political upheavals. Student unrest, protests, demonstrations, culminating in the Plaza Miranda bombing of the opposition party that was blamed on communists became the reason for the declaration of Martial Law.
It was in the 70s that the environmental movement also started, with the US celebrating the first Earth Day in April 1970. The energy crisis, which caused the economic crisis, further cemented the movement. Even the big, gas-guzzling cars produced by Detroit gave way to the fuel-efficient, compact cars from Japanese manufacturers.
The gay rights movement and the women’s right movement gained ground in the 70s. For the first, the transformation was all about visibility. For the second, it was about equal rights and opportunities as well as greater personal freedom for women.
Modern technology as we see and use today, had its roots in the 70s. That was the time of the first commercial microprocessor from Intel, floppy discs, ATMs, portable calculators and wristwatches, and the Walkman.
In music, the 70s was defined by disco. Other genres also became popular in this decade, like funk, punk rock, and soul.
How to Get the 70s Look
What does the 70s interior style look like? Think open-plan living, natural materials, comfortable textures, and lively colors. So for those Gen Z babies who are attracted to retro and vintage, this is a decade you can look at.
With the warm and vibrant colors, simple patterns, textures, fun prints, retro lighting, 70s interior design is definitely maximalist.
This decade had a real creative explosion because there were so many different styles going on. Speaking of fashion, there were the tie-dyed-wearing hippies, the sequined-clad disco dancers, and punks in their black leather jackets worn over torn drainpipe jeans, usually coming from charity and thrift shops.
There were different ways of individual expression—from the pacifist hippies, the don’t-give-a-shit attitude of the disco crowd, to the anti-establishment sentiments of punks.
Home interior styles echoed the different creative sentiments.
Ways to Show the 70s Influence in Your Home
There are ways you can bring in the 70s design influence without making your home look like a cliché.
- A big trend at the time were the shaggy rugs. These had longer pile lengths known as noodles because of their shape. They’re back in fashion, you know. Please don’t buy one if you have allergies or pets. Just get yourself a short-pile rug that is washable. Keep the pattern subtle to allow the 70s vibrant hues to “breathe”.
- Dial down the color of your biggest surface by choosing either beige or greige for your walls. Click on this link to see paint color swatches.
- Bring into your interiors big, leafy, green plants like the monstera deliciosa, a.k.a. the Swiss Cheese plant. Or you can go with low-maintenance succulents like a saguaro or bunny ears cactus.
- Get yourself rattan and solihiya furniture, which is fairly easy to do in this country. Find a hanging chair. That’s so 70s.
- Hang a macrame or textile wall hangings on your walls. Although like the shaggy rug, this is not easy to maintain. I recommend that you go retro with your lights instead, and get yourself a Verner Panton Flowerpot lamp or a Poul Henningsen’s Artichoke. These can be expensive though, so go with weaves like rattan or wicker pendant lights (not easy to clean) or lights with similar shapes to those 70s lights I mentioned.
Ready to paint a hippie dippie home with 70s hues? Visit a Boysen Mix and Match Station and get your colors mixed.