Seventies style sometimes gets a bad rap. Avocado-colored refrigerators and dark brown thick-piled carpet aren’t everyone’s cup of tea, and city recycling programs have pretty much made trash-compactors obsolete. But can I tell you a secret? I love seventies style. Our house was built in the 1950s but later received a snapping seventies renovation. I love love LOVE my orange kitchen cabinets. I love that we have an old intercom system that no longer functions, so that when we push the buttons it emits a screeching noise that Mark calls our “pet baby velociraptor” and introduces to any kids who come to visit. I love it all.
And I really, really love our light fixtures! Old school fixtures just have so much personality.
This one hangs in our bedroom over the foot of our bed.
These hang over the mirror in the master bathroom.
Like every other aspect of our house, these fixtures were an enormous amount of work because of how filthy they were. There was a yellow-brown film of tobacco smoke stain over every surface imaginable. Cleaning each fixture took several hours (and I could probably clean them better still).
To give you an idea, see the white candlestick parts of the orange chandelier? Yeah, before I cleaned them we thought they were orange, too. The orange parts themselves? They were the color of rotting fall leaves, and when I scrubbed off the grime I was tickled by the bright orange revealed underneath.
The big round fixture in the bedroom was one of the worst, since the previous owner of our home smoked so much in her bedroom (she smoked so much in every room of the house, but the bedroom was one of the worst). We actually thought the fixture had brown stained glass; then one day when my mom came over she took the fixture down, scrubbed the whole thing with hot soapy water in the sink, and POOF! It was actually translucent white glass under the nastiness all that time.
I’m so glad that under all the filth there were bold bright designs with enduring style and staying power. These guys are stayin’ alive.