design flashback- 1980's top 10 influences

it was a period of renewed optimism and economic liberation. the yuppie, the cold war ended, the berlin wall fell, Tiananmen square, and commercialism. ralph lauren and calvin klein became household names. dallas and dynasty where on the boob tube, and madonna was flashdancing to the beat of her own drum. superhero's were revived, oprah rolled in a wagon of fat, and the nations business was left out of the bedrooms in a new constitution.

back in the world of design, there were 5 major movements of art deco revival, florida beach, tech, country, and southwestern styles. let's take a closer look at the top 10 best of the 1980's in the world of interior design:

1. halogen lamps were introduced in the 1980's in the tech style and have become an iconic lighting standard. the MR16 is one of the most widely specified bulb in today's designs. we have slowly, but surely, begun to see the dethroning of the halogen bulb to CFL (compact fluorescent) and the LED (light emitting diode) bulb. [image source]


2. the home computer ushered in a new age with the commodore 64 (1982, bankrupt 1994) with over 30 million products sold. the macintosh se (1987) brought forth the invention of a mouse, keyboard, and cpu. home computer now virtually every home has a computer and needs a space for it with the invention of the home office, although i don't think that computers and pringles are connected. typically, the library was used as the home office however with mass storage available on our 120Gb hard drives we don't need as much space anymore. but... trying to cram 3 computers into a 450 sq ft apartment in the west end of vancouver can be a difficult task, but not impossible.


3. kitchens were invested into as a central hub of the home. they had upgraded appliances, more stylized finishes with brass, wicker, wood, stainless steel and white formica faced millwork to set it all off against the terra cotta tile flooring. much of these same principles have carried thru in our cooking rituals of today with one exception- the elimination of a dining room. the loss of the dining table in today's small space is the loss of a limb, as far as i'm concerned. dining tables allow for entertainment/work surfaces/reflection in every modern home.


4. the water bed. the most shameful of all 1980's iconic furniture collections. it's energy sucking, heavy, and non-ergonomic form should never been seen again. no picture here. it's just too disgusting to imagine.

5. geometric style (aka contemporary style) is the 2nd most widely recognized style of the 1980's with it's mix chrome, vinyl, plexiglas and wild and crazy paint techniques or negative image artwork. the furniture was over sized and vivid. i can't imagine walking into one of these rooms now, but i definitely was aspired to invent one at the age of 9 after watching some eddie murphy film.


6. autoCAD (autodesk, est. 1982) has brought forth the interior design industry to be more productive, accurate, and adaptable in the design process. it's intrinsic in the design life today.


7. 8. 9. 10. ok the 80's are over.