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It’s been 100 years since Art Deco was the premiere architectural movement of the century! But it’s never quite been forgotten and it looks like it’s coming back strong. Many homeowners who love this style of architecture are eager to create Art Deco kitchens and other rooms that truly stand out from the crowd.
Popular in the 1920s, the Art Deco movement was the epitome of opulence and luxury, mostly found in buildings that graced cities like New York and Philadelphia. This architectural style was found not only in buildings, including the Empire State Building and Rockefeller Center in NYC, but also influenced trends in clothing, jewelry, cars, furniture, ocean liners, movie theaters, and even everyday objects that were widely used at that time, like radios.
Art Deco is truly one of the most recognizable styles of design and it’s still widely admired today, with its bold geometric forms that resembled the Cubism movement, colors from Fauvism and the Ballet Russe, and exotic styles that take a page from civilizations and countries far away, including China, Persia, ancient Egypt, and the Mayan culture.
Today, some designers still employ elements that were common in the Art Deco movement, though they might not be quite as obvious as they were in structures like the iconic Chrysler Building in Manhattan. Nonetheless, individuals who want to build an Art Deco kitchen can certainly embrace certain aspects of the movement, making their space appear reminiscent of the opulence of the Roaring ‘20s.
So, what characteristics are most often used in Art Deco kitchen design?
If you’ve ever seen the entrance to some of the world’s finest Art Deco buildings, you’ve likely recognized the importance of strong geometric shapes. History says it was strongly influenced by art movements like de Stijl, which focused on breaking down 3-dimensional representations into simple lines and shapes. As such, you’ll see a large focus on geometry and symmetry, with rampant use of squares, rectangles, circles, and triangles, often placed together, forming elaborate designs. Fan shapes were also popular during the Art Deco period.
In kitchens, you can use these geometric shapes in a number of ways. Floors and backsplashes are great places in your Art Deco kitchen to add squares, circles, and more. But you don’t even have to be that literal. Rounded countertops paired with angles and straight lines elsewhere in the room offer a nice contrast. And while the end result might not scream Art Deco, the ideas are definitely present.
The movement before Art Deco, known as Art Nouveau, was all about free-flowing design. But when Art Deco came onto the scene, everything changed. Art Deco kitchens, like everything else Art Deco, are all about symmetry; that is, things being equal. Shapes should have equal and opposite counterparts. For example, if your sink has two cabinets to its left, there should be two cabinets to its right as well. If your island is rounded on one end, it shouldn’t have straight edges but be rounded on the other, too.
The use of mirrors also helps with symmetry, especially in a smaller Art Deco kitchen where space for symmetry may be an issue. These wonderful reflective surfaces, preferably with opulent frames, can truly brighten up a space that doesn’t have a lot of natural light and add metallic accents that are very indicative of the Art Deco movement. If you have room for an entire wall of mirrors in your Art Deco kitchen, go for it! It’ll make your room look especially grand and elegant.
The colors used in Art Deco designs were always super rich in tone, like dark, dark blues, maroon, purple, dark green, and other colors that you often see used in velvet fabrics or those that are represented in gemstones like sapphires or rubies. Those are perfect colors for your Art Deco kitchen, too. Used them on the walls, the backsplash, or even paint the cabinets with these sumptuous jewel tones.
If you want to use black in your Art Deco kitchen, that’s fine. Just pair it with silver and gold. These metals were both widely used in the 1920s, symbolizing wealth but also indicative of the movement’s obsession with ancient civilizations like the Egyptians and the Aztecs.
Want to know more about incorporating Art Deco elements into your Art Deco kitchen plans. We can help! The expert designers at Mr. Cabinet Care can offer you suggestions for your Art Deco kitchen design and guide you towards the right products for your design. Call us to learn more!