Retro Design

Babycham bottle for retro champagne glasses

Retro Champagne Glasses – Coupes and Saucers

Retro Champagne Glasses- Coupes and Saucers If you watch any decent Hollywood film depicting the glamorous lifestyle of the 1940s, 50s, 60s or 70s you will without doubt enjoy a scene where the leading actors and actresses are drinking from retro champagne glasses. You know the ones. Those with a bowl or coupe shape rather than a flute or vase.  I understand why most modern-day champagne drinkers ... »

Retro Design Chair made from steel tube and rover chair

Retro Design Rover Car Chairs

I first came across Ron Arad retro design Rover car chairs in the reception area of a design agency called Wolff Olins. The year was 1988 and it was in fact, one of the altogether more rare, two seater sofa models. As you would expect in a world class design agency, the whole ambiance was refined. High warehouse style ceilings complemented by an aesthetically pleasing curved glass front desk, chro... »

Retro Colours and Colour Combinations

Retro Colours and Colour Combinations

Truism of the day: “Fashions change”.   That is the whole point of fashion.  But there are certain colours or colour combinations that say retro 70s or retro 80s to me.  The same can be said for certain retro colours and  combinations from the 50s, 60s and 90s.  In reality, I accept that almost every other colour combination was used somewhere in retro design, so this is perhaps not an attempt to ... »

Retro Design – The Squircle

Retro Design – The Squircle

The rounded square or rectangle has featured frequently in retro design.  An infamous example is the passenger windows in the 1950s Comet airliner.  Infamous, because of catastrophic failure due to stress related metal fatigue emanating at the rounded corner.  But squircles became particularly fashionable in the 70s through to the early 80s.  You could see them in wall paper and curtain designs, c... »

Red Fruit Juice Glass 1972

Red Fruit Juice Glass 1972

This red Fruit Juice glass dates from around 1972. Not classic 70s style, but still it has a retro design style of it’s own. The main problem is that orange juice or squash looked strangely unappetising through the red glass. Originally, a set of 6 glasses from Woolworths. By Paul Bates (thepaulbates) »

60s Sherry Glass

60s Sherry Glass

This 60s Sherry Glass was one of a set of six, each with a different base and stem bead colour highlight. The set was kept in a sturdy box “under the stairs” and only used on special occasions. More often used for Ruby Port or Egg Nog than Sherry, Christmas was not the same without their re-appearance. The highlight colours included: Blue, Red, Green, Yellow, Orange and Purple. The sim... »

Retro Christmas Table Decoration

Retro Christmas Table Decoration

I guess that Christmas will never go out of fashion. This retro Christmas table decoration dates from around 1980.  Click to see the video: Retro Christmas Table Decoration By Paul Bates (thepaulbates) »

Decimalisation Day February 1971

Decimalisation Day February 1971

This decimal converter mug dates from 1971 and would originally have contained a chocolate Easter egg. Decimalisation Day or D – Day was actually February 15th 1971, although it took several months to convert everything- especially slot machines. For a period it was possible to tender either the original currency (£.s.d) or “New Pence” (p).  My school year was one of the last to ... »

1972 Design black and orange glasses

1970s Black and Orange Glass

My first paid job was in 1972.  I had just started secondary school, aged 11 and this was the first half term.  It was a beautiful sunny October morning when someone, probably my sister Jill, suggested I should go “spud bashing” to make some money.  That is potato picking to the uninitiated. I pulled on my trusty wellies with a green parker and a red Massey Ferguson tractor with trailer full of la... »

More Choppers

More Choppers

Chopper Bikes.  Just a few from a huge squadron that arrived unexpectedly at the Blackfordby pub, The Black Lion, (Derbys.) just after Christmas 2012. It was most probably a charity ride. One day I will find out the history – why they ride Choppers, and let you know. By Paul Bates (thepaulbates) »

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