How to restyle your home: 1930s style guide

The 1930s was a defining time period: architecture and town planning radically changed with more people moving away from the city centre.  The world was modernising with new products, new forms of entertainment and pastimes that also reflected in a change in the culture.  People desired to move to smaller villages and set up family life in semi-detached homes, which were typically set out in a terraced pattern.

New homes were constructed quickly and were produced in a somewhat repetitive fashion, with very little distinguishing traits in design or style. Despite the somewhat homogenised, boxy shaped approach, homes still had a specific style that developed during the 1930s.  This can be emulated even today as part of refurbishment or restoration projects.  We’ll give you a quick guide to restyling your home, whether you simply wish to copy the 1930s style, or your home was built in the period.

Retro Architecture:

1930s Front Doors1930s houses had a very typical layout with a room off the front hall with a second living room and kitchen at the rear. Upstairs in these small homes were usually two bedrooms, a small room and a bathroom with a toilet. There would also be a detached garage.

The exterior of these homes mixed red brick and pebbledash with herringbone brickwork, weather boarding, and tile hung walls. The windows had wooden frame and often diamond-shaped leaded panes. The traditional doors of the time were of a subtle pasty colour with and made of oak or pine and featuring iron nails and door furniture.  The door might have a window panel and mail slot, as post boxes were not common yet.  Each door helped to compartmentalise the home rather than go with the open plan used later on in many homes.

During this time, there were Georgian Revival, Modern, Avante Garde and Art Deco styles both on the exterior and interior of these homes. Many of these homes have been somewhat neglected, but are currently undergoing a revival in interest among housing restoration novices and experts alike. As interest in the 1930s and these specific architectural styles have grown, more do-it-yourselfers are taking on these home projects.

Period Furniture:

1930s living roomYou have the look, the tile and windows even the door, but now you have got to refurnish the place right. A three piece suite is a good choice; a two or three-seat settee along with two arm chairs is a perfect addition to your living room. For displays, such as a hutch, make sure that its front is glass doors and use it to display a nice set of china.  Furniture was often painted in various shades of brown and green during this time period.

Many companies now offer reproduction pieces from the 1930s so that both interior furniture, decor and the exterior accents can be added during the restoration process at an affordable price rather than trying to hunt down original pieces.  This also includes replacing interior and exterior doors to bring your 1930s home back to its former glory.

Renovating your 1930s house?

We can provide you with a bespoke 1930’s-style door, researched from our large library of text books for added authenticity, and crafted using traditional, time-honoured techniques.   We can design the perfect doorway to compliment the architectural features of your 1930’s property.  If needed, we can design beautiful stained glass panels in the typical 1930s style.

Our quality, handmade 1930s style front doors will finish off any restoration project and will make a great entrance to your home.

Here’s a gallery of our most recent designs:

Contact us now on: 01159 588 755

Image credits:   1930s living room