Styling Idea # 26 Retro Dressing Tables

INSPIRATION FOR THIS POST

Yesterday I was working with an incredibly talented and generous stylist (read her blog here) at a studio in Sydney and during our preparations she told me “Dita Von Tresse  is sitting in the studio cafe”. Naturally I go for a sticky beak because she is famous and because I am totally intrigued and impressed by this little pocket rocket of perfection. How can someone pack so much glamor into their small boned big breasted frame? (which, for the record is totally true- she is pint sized and amazing in flesh. No pun intended). She must have the pleasure of sitting in front of a perfect dressing table and preening herself in a space that inspires beauty to look this good.

Dita Von Tress

I have titled today’s idea Retro Dressing Tables (I will do a modern version of this styling idea later) and have taken inspiration from the 1940’s to illustrate the glamor of this period. However, this piece of furniture has been in and out of vogue since the 18th century so styles and references do cross over. I hope you enjoy seeing some of the original images in their black and white form!

1940's Dressing Table

Getty Images

Dressing Table with Tassels

Frill Desk Dressing Table

1940's Bedroom

TRANSLATION: TRY THIS AT HOME

  • I really love seeing the shapes and lines of furniture in original images and marveling, in some cases, just how little things have changed.
  • The last image was from a department store catalogue showcasing how to design a modern room- look at the day bed, side table and floor lamps- you can use all of these today! Not to mention a perfect dressing table.
  • If you think I am crazy suggesting you cover your dressing table in tulle I URGE YOU to check out this image from the wonderful blog Absolutely Beautiful Things– you will see what it can look like in reality and in today’s style.
  • Lamps play a big feature in styling your dressing table- I am personally a fan of the two side lamps, in 25 watts with a shade colour that gives off a soft yellow, peach, gold or pink glow.
  • Style your dressing table consciously – this is not a haven for all your junk rather a clean organised space displaying only essentials. Perfume bottles, lipsticks, candles and jewellery make the cut to full time display residents.
  • Think about your chair height. A low chair will feel a bit more special and less desk like, however it should have enough height for you to be able to cross your legs!
  • DO look on ebay for retro dressers- there are plenty of shapes to choose from. My favourite at the moment is the art deco style with an over sized round mirror (2nd image from top). These look at home in a retro room, modern room or over the top vintage style.
  • Think about your mirror choice- a mirror that is attached to the dresser is preferable but it should not be an oval with a tilt-able mirror- these look terrible. Choose from large round, three piece panels, or one central mirror. (A note on three piece panels- if the side panels are tilted you will see your side profile- if you don’t like your side profile stick to one central mirror- you must feel good when you are sitting at your dresser).
  • Finally, do get into a habit of sitting at your dresser- don’t leave it to sit in the corner whilst you use the bathroom. I picked up a retro dresser in Brisbane and it was the best $40 I ever spent.

Happy preening!

I hope you like the black and white references- something a bit different. Let me know your thoughts.

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3 Comments to “Styling Idea # 26 Retro Dressing Tables”

  1. Bring back Glamour.

    Makes me want to sit on a fluffy stool and ” Powder My Nose “.

    Great shots..Have just put in my room my mother in-laws old rosewood dresser. ..Now just need to find a great stool so I can sit at it.

  2. lovellyness…matching hand mirrors and brushes at the Thomas’ anyone?

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