greenspun.com : LUSENET : Art Deco Society of Washington : One Thread


-- Roberto (deco30s@aol.com), January 28, 2004


Hi Roberto.

I'm not surprised your having trouble finding the right curtains. For one thing, the fact that you say you're looking for 20s curtains but your email address refers to the 3Os makes me think you may not be totally sure of what you really want in the first place. The two decades had totally diferent feels. For another, even if you have a specific look in mind, the chances that you'll find the right curtains made up and ready for purchase in a store are about zero. There's not enough market to make it worthwhile. And even though there's rumblings of another deco revival underway, I haven't seen anything in Chicago to make me believe it. Besides, the last time the style went around, beautiful--and intact--examples of Art Deco interiors were tarted up with corny kitsch. Even the Waldorf-Astoria was a victim. Go down there and you'll see what I mean. When they set up a cocktail lounge inside the Park Avenue entrance, they installed a beautifully executed etched glass panel & bronze pavilion around the piano, but instead of extending the hotels original French Empire detailing in the Deco manner, they added cheesy etched glass flappers, who look less like the 1931 thwn they do 1971. I think Lisa Simpson said it best "I don't think the REAL Radioactive Man wars pajamas with a picture of himself on it." That's the kind of junk you get when marketing people catch the scent of a trend. Anyway, if you want the right look, you'll probably have to do the curtains yourself.

Most 192Os windows--even in high-style interiors--got plain, straight hung curtains. What made them work with the style of the room was the pattern (if any) and color and weave of the fabric, and the type of trim. So the bad news is that most any ready-made curtains you find labeled as "Art Deco" style likely aren't anything of the sort, and what you really need will have to be adapted from available designs, or custom made from appropriate fabric. Early 2Os fabrics ran to abstract florals or historic designs recolored in juicy pastels. Later fabrics--after 1925--tended toward cubism and were more sober in color, and had less fancy trim.

In the early 3Os, sleek, unpatterned designs became popular, and curtains became simpler yet. Uncurtained windows with enamled metal Venetian blinds were common in the mid 3Os. Later in the decade, pastiches of Regency and Early Victorian curtain designs were revived, but in modern materials and in modern colors.

My suggestion is the same as it always is: head down to the Main Library and check out the bound issues of House & Garden and House Beautiful of the period. Once you know for sure the look you want, you'll have a better idea how to create similar styles from available materials. The problem is the photos are all black and white, so if you don't know the typical color combinations for the diferent sub-periods, pay attention to the the full-color ads for luxury automobiles and bathroom fixtures in ths same magazines. Also, check out old posters, old dishes, old packaging lables, and the dresses & ties in vintage clothes stores. After a while, you'll get a feeling for what is right and what is way off base. Good luck. Meanwhile, here is a sketch I made for a woman who wanted a scheme of the early 2Os. Just cut and paste it to your browser.

http://groups.msn.com/_Secure/0UgARA1EY3tNVKbiMCZbrS58Czp0oMP! X7uJ75CRU8z4wc0wpO6QFzllJ!yUdXTty9DSIsnJCakPZ07nR2LED5zXsEFklZFB2G! bqYgu2lKW6I7fQnwmV1vRvO*ObdLHj/1920s%20SCHEMEDjpg.JPG? dc=4675454059447755370


-- MAGNAVERDE (magnaverde@magnaverde.com), January 30, 2004.

what a snobby answer

-- none (none@bar.com), March 18, 2004.

We carry a great line of art deco fabrics, ideal for draperies and furniture upholstery projects. Go to the home page and click on the Fabrics link, listed on the menu. From there you can select your style-art deco, modernist, mid-century, art nouveau, Frank Lloyd Wright designs and Vienna Workshop archives. We are happy to help you select the perfect deco fabrci for your home. clcik here: http://www.decodame.com

-- Lorial Francis (lorial@decodame.com), April 10, 2004.

Hi there,

in reference to the Art Deco revival rumblings in Chicago - IT IS TRUE! Deuter & Levand Gallery specializes in elegant, exotic, and authentic Art Deco Furniture & Accessories, and opened 90 days ago in Chicago's Rivernorth Furniture & Art District. Our gallery is helping bring back the spirit of the golden days, however is also taking it a bit further by combining the luxurious pieces with modern art, resulting in an eclectic decorating style. Stop by, feel the jazz era return through the furniture we offer. Find out more about eclectic decor utilizing fabulous Art Deco pieces, including stunning chandeliers, lamps and rugs. Our webpage is: www.deuter-levand.com

It is stylish, and looks fabulous at home, in an office, or a hotel lobby. We offer elegant, athentic and exotic furnishings - however no curtains!

-- Petra A. Deuter (gallery@deuter-levand.com), January 03, 2005.

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