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Miscellaneous10 Things Every House In The 70s Had That No One Sees...

10 Things Every House In The 70s Had That No One Sees Today

The 1970s stood as a pivotal era characterized by audacious experimentation, particularly in the realm of home design. It was a time when architects and homeowners alike sought to break free from traditional constraints, paving the way for a unique fusion of styles and trends that left an indelible mark on the landscape of domestic aesthetics.


Amidst this vibrant tapestry of design evolution, certain features emerged as veritable icons, encapsulating the essence of 70s households. From the warm embrace of wood paneling to the luxurious sprawl of shag carpets, these elements collectively wove a narrative of innovation and distinctiveness. However, as time marches forward, these very elements that once defined the quintessential 70s home often find themselves relegated to the realms of nostalgia, overlooked in the face of contemporary design preferences.

10 Things Every House In The 70s Had 

Shag Carpeting:

Shag carpets were a quintessential element of 70s decor, known for their plush, long fibers that created a soft and luxurious feel underfoot. Typically found in living rooms and bedrooms, these carpets often came in vibrant colors like mustard yellow, deep brown, or bright orange, adding a bold statement to the overall interior. While they provided warmth and comfort, maintaining shag carpets proved to be a challenge, as dirt and debris easily nestled within the dense fibers. Today, modern homeowners tend to opt for sleeker flooring options like hardwood or laminate, relegating shag carpets to a nostalgic memory of a bygone era.


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Wood Paneling:

Wood paneling was a popular choice for wall coverings in the 70s, creating a warm and inviting atmosphere. Often made from dark wood varieties, the panels covered entire walls, giving rooms a cozy, cabin-like ambiance. However, as interior design preferences shifted towards brighter and airier spaces, wood paneling fell out of favor. Many homeowners today opt for lighter paint colors and open-concept layouts to create a more contemporary feel, leaving the once-beloved wood paneling to be associated with a specific era of design.


Popcorn Ceilings:

Popcorn ceilings, also known as textured or acoustic ceilings, were widely used in the 70s as a cost-effective way to hide imperfections and dampen sound. The textured surface was created using a mixture of paint or styrofoam particles, providing a bumpy appearance. While popcorn ceilings served a practical purpose, they fell out of favor due to their association with outdated design trends and difficulty in cleaning. Modern homeowners often prefer smooth, clean ceilings for a sleeker and more modern look, leading to the decline of popcorn ceilings in contemporary interior design.

Lava Lamps:

Lava lamps epitomized the psychedelic and free-spirited nature of the 70s. These iconic lamps featured a liquid mixture that bubbled and flowed, creating mesmerizing patterns inside a glass container. The ambient, colorful lighting provided by lava lamps made them a popular choice for creating a relaxed and laid-back atmosphere. While they were once considered a must-have accessory, their popularity waned over the years. Today, lava lamps are often viewed as nostalgic artifacts, evoking memories of a time when unconventional and eclectic decor choices were embraced. While they may not be as prevalent in contemporary homes, lava lamps continue to hold a special place in the hearts of those who fondly remember the groovy aesthetics of the 70s.


Avocado Green Appliances:

In the 70s, kitchen appliances underwent a colorful transformation, with shades like avocado green making a bold statement. Refrigerators, stoves, and even dishwashers were often available in this distinctive hue, adding a touch of vibrancy to the heart of the home. While the trend of colorful appliances has made a comeback in recent years, the avocado green of the 70s remains a unique and nostalgic choice. Modern kitchens tend to feature stainless steel or matte black appliances for a sleek and contemporary look, but the retro charm of avocado green appliances is a reminder of the era when bold colors were embraced in interior design.

Bean Bag Chairs:

Bean bag chairs were emblematic of the casual and laid-back vibe of 70s interiors. Filled with small, soft pellets, these chairs conformed to the shape of the user, offering a comfortable and informal seating option. Popular in bedrooms, game rooms, and lounges, bean bag chairs were a versatile piece of furniture. While they may not be as prevalent in contemporary homes, the nostalgia associated with bean bag chairs has led to a resurgence of interest in their retro charm. Modern iterations often feature sleeker designs and a variety of materials, catering to both the desire for comfort and the aesthetics of contemporary interior design.


Macramé Wall Hangings:

Macramé wall hangings were a distinctive feature of 70s decor, showcasing intricate knotting techniques in woven textile art. These handcrafted pieces often adorned walls, adding a bohemian and artistic touch to the home. Macramé creations ranged from small decorative accents to large, eye-catching wall hangings, providing a unique and personalized element to interior spaces. While the popularity of macramé waned in the following decades, a resurgence of interest in handmade and artisanal decor has brought these woven wonders back into the spotlight. Modern homeowners may incorporate macramé as a nod to the past, infusing spaces with a touch of vintage-inspired craftsmanship.

Retro Wallpaper:

Bold and vibrant wallpaper with funky patterns was a hallmark of 70s interior design, transforming plain walls into eye-catching focal points. Geometric shapes, floral prints, and psychedelic patterns adorned living rooms, bedrooms, and even bathrooms, creating a visually stimulating environment. While wallpaper has experienced a resurgence in recent years, the patterns and styles favored today often differ from the bold choices of the 70s. Modern wallpaper trends lean towards more subtle and contemporary designs, with an emphasis on texture and simplicity. The retro wallpaper of the 70s remains a nostalgic symbol of an era unafraid to embrace eccentric and lively patterns in home decor.


Sunken Living Rooms:

Sunken living rooms were a trendy architectural feature in 70s homes, characterized by a step-down design that created a distinct separation between the seating area and the rest of the living space. This architectural choice added a sense of depth and coziness, making the living room a central and inviting gathering space. However, as design preferences evolved towards more open and fluid layouts, sunken living rooms became less common. Modern homes often favor open-concept designs that promote connectivity and spaciousness, relegating the sunken living room to a nostalgic memory of an era that embraced unique and innovative architectural elements.

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Waterbeds were a symbol of the 70s counterculture, offering a unique and unconventional approach to bedroom furnishings. These beds featured a water-filled mattress, providing a different sleeping experience compared to traditional spring or foam mattresses. While they gained popularity for their comfort and novelty, maintaining waterbeds required extra care, and their association with leaks and spills led to a decline in popularity over time. Today, waterbeds are a rare sight, with modern bedrooms typically furnished with more conventional mattress options. The waterbed craze of the 70s remains a nostalgic memory, reflecting a time when experimentation in home furnishings was embraced with a spirit of free-spirited individuality.


In conclusion, revisiting the iconic features that defined every house in the 70s evokes a sense of nostalgia and appreciation for an era marked by bold design choices. From the warm embrace of wood paneling to the vibrant allure of avocado green appliances, each element tells a story of a bygone time when experimentation and creativity were at the forefront of home design.


Though often overlooked in contemporary design, these features serve as a testament to the uniqueness of the 70s aesthetic. The sunken living rooms, bold wallpaper patterns, and even the quirky carpeted bathrooms reflect design preferences and the cultural and societal currents that shaped that period.


Q: Were carpeted bathrooms a common trend in the 70s?

Carpeted bathrooms were indeed a common trend in the 70s. The soft and plush feel was considered luxurious, although practicality and hygiene concerns have led to this trend being abandoned in modern design.

Sunken living rooms were popular for their avant-garde design, creating visual interest and a sense of separation within an open floor plan. However, integrating them into contemporary homes poses challenges due to accessibility and safety concerns.


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