A collection of framed butterfly prints added beautiful interest to a calm 1950s living room

A calm 1950s living room
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The owner of this calm 1950s living room collected butterfly prints.

She cleverly used her hobby to answer the need for dramatizing a long, blank wall, a feature common to the rectangular midcentury living rooms found in many houses and apartments.

The secret of displaying a collection effectively is to present it as a unit, not scatter it all over the house — while one secret of breaking up a long wall is to use many pictures, judiciously.

In this living room, both secrets played together in harmony.

As you can see, the mirror served as a foil for the colorful butterfly prints, which were mounted and framed exactly alike. (Any series of pictures could be used similarly — Currier & Ives prints, landscapes, even photographs.)

There are more decorating secrets used to create the charming look and feel of this room from 1952. For example, the secret of hanging a mirror is to place it where seated people don’t have to stare into it.

Finally, the secret of buying upholstered furniture is to choose simple pieces, like those seen in the squared-off lines on these midcentury chairs (in coral) and the sofa (in a large floral print pattern).

A calm 1950s living room
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