Retro-chic room ideas - 10 of the best

Find more retro-chic decorating ideas at

1/10 Retro-inspired kitchen-diner with iconic vintage artwork

kitchen dining area with white wall and wooden table

(Image credit: Future PLC/Rory Corrigan)

Between the perfect pairing of wood and avocado green, the pops of copper and orange and The Green Lady portrait, the 1970s feeling is there, but without a hint of irony in sight.

Pantone chairs

Similar lamp
Tom Dixon

2/10 Neutral panelled living room with jewel blue accents

living room with sofa and photo frame

(Image credit: Future PLC/Adrian Briscoe)

Jewel colours layered over a neutral base were a way for the newly well travelled of the 1970s to channel their adventures into their homes. Mexico, Tangier and India were now destinations that were being admired for their native style. Here, the sandy tones of the walls and textiles are kissed by the shots of blue that inject the feeling of crystal pools or a twilight sky from foreign climates. Jet-set gorgeous!

Similar modular sofa
Similar sideboard
West Elm

3/10 Bright bathroom with retro-inspired tiles

bathroom with wash basin and plant

(Image credit: Future PLc/David Giles)

Retro chic can apply to any room in the house. Case in point - this very modern all-white bathroom is grounded and given a punch of personality via a very 1970s-style floor tile pattern. The green and yellow starburst is part Mediterranean getaway, part kitchen wallpaper of the era, but as the flooring for a cool family bathroom, it is bang on.

Similar floor tiles
Mosaic del Sur
Similar basin

4/10 Retro trinkets against mid-century wallpaper

room with wallpaper on wall and toys

(Image credit: TBC)

Any collection - especially one of treasured vintage nostalgia-inducing trinkets - deserves a proper showcase. The retro chic here comes boldly in the form of the mid-century wallpaper. The Festival of Britain pattern is pared back by being kept neutral, with only a hint of mustard here and there. It's all in the name of a fun collection of mementos and memories.
Mini Moderns
Similar toys
After Noah

5/10 Retro tropical-inspired living room corner

living room with bamboo wall and cane chair

(Image credit: TBC)

Explore the world of 1970s style through an opened door to the tropics. The colour palette of brights - from azure blues to flamingo pinks - and the floral vine motif make this chic curtain the most tropical of textiles. Like something out of a classic thriller, the cool cane chair in brilliant white creates a vantage point from which to soak up the atmosphere. All that is missing is a ceiling fan and the treasure map.

Similar tiles
Walls & Floors
Similar floor lamp

6/10 Opulent retro home office

home office room with blood red chair and rug

(Image credit: TBC)

Slip into the dark shadows of 1970s style by embracing a chic but almost Hammer horror-esque surrounding. This opulent office setting - complete with blood-red chair of world-domination proportions, tone-on-tone rug and retro portraits - is a whimsical setting not for the faint of heart. If Liberace were a vampire, this is where he might do his paperwork (after dark, of course).

Similar chair
Similar rug
Designers Guild

7/10 Retro rug wall hanging

bedroom with rug wall hanging and table lamp

(Image credit: TBC)

Take the popular tapestry look of a bygone era and apply a very modern take. This standard contemporary rug is placed on the wall to act as wallpaper-cum-yarn art. As the backdrop to a distressed cabinet topped with a jewel-blue lamp, the look is eclectic and full of texture. See this as a mish-mash that works and be inspired to create your own.

Similar lamp
Similar cabinet
Alexander & Pearl

8/10 Masculine retro library corner

library area with grey wall and patchwork rug

(Image credit: TBC)

Retro chic is greatly about shapes and textures. Here, the expected riotous colour palette is nowhere to be seen. Instead, a cool masculine grey sets the tone and the layered textiles and diverse shapes create the nostalgia. The borderline shag-pile carpet, the modern patchwork rug, the gloss table - they all hint at past while coming together to form maximum modernity.

Similar armchair

Similar rug
Woven Ground

9/10 Bright modernist living room corner

living room with bright yellow wallpaper and grey sofa

(Image credit: TBC)

Wallpapering in such a bold colour is daring, but the pay off is divine. A grey mid-century sofa, despite the distinct shape and buttonned accents, cannot lift a room the way the choice of this yellow wallpaper can. The character of the seating comes alive when supported by the sunny hue, which plays a balancing game with the other neutral tones. Sweet harmony.

Miss Print

10/10 Sideboard tableau and pixelated artwork

living room with brown wall and lamp

(Image credit: TBC)

A slick and solid wood sideboard transcends time, but when peppered with glass objects, typographic trinkets and a pelican lamp, it becomes a retro bolt-hole. More so, the pixilated print is a 1970s celluloid throwback. The grain of the pixilation and the intimate moment amps up the borderline cult movie moment to a level of high art.

Similar sideboard
West Elm
Similar lamp