Wall-to-wall carpeting wasn’t an entirely new option prior to the 50s, but when it was invented in the 1930s, it was too costly for the average homeowner.
The convergence of the post-war housing boom with innovations in wall-to-wall carpet manufacturing created a flooring decor trend that felt like a novelty to the young families buying houses in this era. And for many in the burgeoning middle class, it was an affordable luxury for the first time in their lives.
While it’s not exactly how we feel about wall-to-wall carpeting these days, the trend caught fire back then — even kitchens and bathrooms couldn’t escape the call for carpeting.
Here, have a look at what was most popular in the earliest years of the wall-to-wall carpet trend. You might even find that some of these colors and patterns could still work in homes today!
Wall-to-wall carpet installation in the 1950s
“Son, I’ve laid a lot of carpet, but none as good-looking as this Masland Quadrille”
Quadrille is Wilton Broadloom of lasting beauty — a Masland Beauti-blend Broadloom renowned for its depth, its luxury, its outstanding wear.
You will see Quadrille rugs and carpets in the most fashionable homes in America — and in your city’s finest home fashion stores. See Masland Beautiblend Broadlooms weekly on ABC Television.
Plush Callaway Carpets – Midcentury wall-to-wall carpeting (1951)
Your top fashion news is right under foot in Calplush, luxurious deep, clipped pile of “dyed-in-the-fiber,” high-quality yarn.
Seamless widths up to twelve feet. Decorator colors — Beige, Gray, Evergreen, Woodrose, Sage Green, Mink Brown, Champagne. Featured by leading stores everywhere, at about $8.95 per square yard. (100% cotton — rubber back)
ALSO SEE: 50 bold & colorful vintage 1950s home decor ideas, plus authentic mid-century color schemes
Beauvais broadloom vintage wall-to-wall carpet styles (1954)
Brightens your dark rooms! Nothing brightens a dark room more beautifully than a luxurious sweep of Bigelow’s Beauvais Wheat broadloom in doeskin beige or dover grey.
Siboney broadloom wall-to-wall carpet styles (1953)
Siboney broadloom by Bigelow has more “extras” than a newsboy
Just look at the richly-textured pattern! Notice how Siboney’s special 3-level pile gives you the beautiful highlights and shadows you find in the costliest sculptured rugs.
Broadloom Match-Mates to mix and match carpet styles (1954)
Mix them and match them… tie rooms together
ALSO SEE: Post-war housing: See 35 small starter homes from the ’40s & ’50s
Bretton Hall broadloom (1954)
For many, many happy Christmases to come!
Christmas ’54 will be an unforgettable day if you give her Bigelow’s Bretton Hall broadloom. No gift could do more to brighten the heart of a woman who loves her home. So be a smart Santa; take your wife to your Bigelow retailer’s today…
Bigelow Waikiki broadloom carpet styles (1955)
If you want a real luxury carpet at a moderate price, Bigelow Waikiki broadloom is for you.
MORE: See why people loved these elegant & affordable linoleum floors and vinyl flooring from the 1960s
Now DuPont nylon ushers in a new era in wall-to-wall carpeting quality (1954)
Now! Two exciting new wall-to-wall carpet textures (1955)
Something new in luxurious sculpted mid-century carpet! (1955)
MORE: How to be a perfect ’50s housewife: Love your refrigerator!
Fresh and gay — and “very today” wall-to-wall carpet styles (1955)
Touraine carpet achieves a two-level texture with straight and Curltwist all-wool yarns. 4 are in stunning abstract patterns. A fifth gives a stylized damask effect. About $11.95 per square yard. (From Alexander Smith)
MORE: What did a typical 1950s suburban house look like? Feast your eyes on this fab prefab home built in 1958
Bigelow’s Chapel Hill broadloom – a beautiful family carpet (1955)
Patterned wall-to-wall and stair carpeting from the early 50s
Lovely, and high fashion! Olson reversible floral wall-to-wall carpeting from 1962
Warm cinnamon: This lovely, colorful, new floral pattern is charmingly set off by the soft warm field of grey, so popular today.
A rug that will bring up-to-date beauty and character to any room at small cost and be an ideal background for other furnishings.
Here is a serviceable rug that will stand a lot of wear without showing soil or footmarks. A luxuriously soft, seamless, two-sided broadloom rug that will give double luxury underfoot and double your money’s worth.
Rich floral on greige: This graceful, new, floral-pattern will bring up-to-date charm, color and luxury to any room at a wonderful saving in money. It is hard to imagine a richer background for other furnishings.
Here is thick, deep-textured broadloom that is woven reversible like all Olson Rugs, with the same charming pattern and the same deep pile on both sides to give double the wear and luxury.
ALSO SEE: 140+ vintage 1950s wallpaper samples for some real retro decor inspiration
Sandalwood wall-to-wall carpeting – lovely, new, fashionable home decor
You just know that the occupants of this attractive, restful room are people of good taste and refinement.
How harmoniously the walls, drapes, furniture and rug have been brought together. No wonder leading decorators and women of taste are so enthusiastic in their endorsement of this rich, new color that will not show soil.
The popular solid color effect is created by weaving together two lovely, closely related shades of Sandalwood to give added texture interest, beauty and serviceability. Sandalwood lends itself admirably to varied furniture and color schemes.
ALSO SEE: 18 beautiful mid-century entrance halls invite you inside with vintage style
Mid-century modern carpeting from the ’60s: Green, at its loveliest
It is easy to understand why the popularity of Olson Reversible Broadloom rugs becomes greater each year, for no lovelier background could possibly be found for rooms of every type and period.
One of the most widely chosen colors is this practical, restful easy-to-live-with Green. Two closely related shades give a solid color effect and add life, texture, beauty and serviceability.
Note how the rug lends spaciousness to each setting. It has depth and richness of tone — a luxuriousness underfoot that is very appealing.
ALSO SEE: Mid-century modern door hardware from the 1950s & 1960s – plus other popular vintage designs
MORE: Vintage ’50s master bedroom decor: See 50+ examples of retro home style
Vintage wall-to-wall carpeting: Popular heather tweeds – Beautiful, yet practical for your home
Colorful New Tweed! A blend of four decorator colors: White, Rose, Grey and rich accents of Black. One glance tells you that here is Tweed Broadloom of richness and character. So easy to live with. Thrives on traffic. Wonderful texture resists soil, crushing, shading and footmarks. So luxurious and expensive looking.
New Tweed Beauty, with the accent on luxury. Woven of four decorator tones of Golden Taupe, White, Black and Grey. Smart, up-to-date styling and rich handsome appearance. Very practical as well, for it will resist crushing, soiling, footmarks and shading.
Mid-century modern carpet: Early American pattern from 1962
This delightful Early American pattern with its exquisite blend of colors gives an effect so fresh and appealing that we feel you, too, will find it irresistible.
Customers everywhere are enthusiastic in their praise of this unusual and wholly charming rug. A great variety of colors make it equally at home in an Early American setting as well as rooms of mixed periods.
Here’s a sure tonic for that tired room, for nothing is more truly modern today than Early American. We are quite sure you have never walked on softer, more luxurious-feeling rugs, regardless of price.
DON’T MISS: Lucille Ball & Desi Arnaz show off their dream carpet (’50s & ’60s)
Fiesta casuals wall-to-wall carpeting for vintage home decorating
2-in-1 luxury with reversible retro rugs and carpeting styles
Mid-century modern carpeting: Casually elegant NEW TWEEDS! (1963)
AMBER TWEED — decorative color magic for any room. This dramatic new tweed brings heartening warmth through the artistic blending of four harmonizing shades of carpet yarns that create a fascinating background for browns, beiges, corals, oranges, and off-white — almost any color scheme and accent you’ve dreamed about.
The rich textured effect of this lovely tweed is designed to hide soil and footmarks, and its exclusive Olson Reversible feature gives you twice the wear with all the luxury of carpeting you’ve probably seen up to twice our low price.
ALSO SEE: Pink washers & dryers from the 50s & 60s
AVOCADO TWEED — newsworthy fashion in carpet color. If your favorite color is green — our fashion-fresh Avocado will thrill you with its soft, easy-to-decorate-around yellow-green tones.
Woven seamless and reversible by the exclusive Olson Loom-Woven process to make it feel as luxurious underfoot as it looks to the eye. And talk about long wear! Years from now when you would ordinarily buy a new rug, you’ll just turn this lovely rug or wall-to-wall carpeting over, and presto! a new-looking rug without the expense. It’s like getting a second rug free!
CHOCOLATE ‘N’ VANILLA TWEED. This delicious mixture of two shades of brown with creamy white is as rich to the touch as the dessert that was its inspiration.
It thrives on traffic because it resists footmarks and hides soil, and its cushiony thickness is sheer luxury. Double Loom Woven Reversible and seamless up to 18 feet wide. Double wear, double luxury — yet you pay nothing extra for the second side! True Olson value!
Random tweeds – Vintage carpeting from 1963
SPICE TWEED, a rugged, new textured effect that is a designer’s triumph of delicious color. Achieved by artfully mixing six shades of yarn — Beige, Sandalwood and Off-White with deep Wood Tone accents.
It brings modern room settings to life — brings out the mellow wood tones of traditional furnishings. You’ll love the same deep pile on both sides, and its foot-pampering luxury. Reversible, like all Olson rugs.
GREEN SPLASH TWEED, designed to mingle naturally with other colors, as nature mixes her own greens. A deep, luxurious, eye-pleasing rug or wall-to-wall carpeting that’s ideal for any furnishings — from Early American to contemporary.
Woven Reversible and seamless like all Olson rugs and carpeting — in 15 widths up to 18 feet wide — it gives you the economy of 2-rugs-in-l. The second side costs you nothing extra.
ALSO SEE: 100+ fabulous 50s floors of linoleum & vinyl
Beautiful and practical striking new tweeds
GOLD NUGGET TWEED is composed of such delicious shades of yarn as Lemon Peel, Citron, Oyster White and Wood Tones. A favorite of decorators everywhere.
It will transform your rooms into cheerful havens, as well. Expensive looking in every detail except price. Woven seamless up to 18 feet wide — and reversible for twice the wear, twice the luxury.
MULTICOLOR TWEED– a fascinating blend of Green, Gold, Yellow, Aqua and White — has the look of a sun-dappled forest floor. You’ll find its refreshing glow of color a wonderful springboard for room color schemes with furniture of any periods.
CHAR BROWN TWEED — an exclusive Olson tweed that leads the fashion trend to Cocoa-and-Black tones, accented with white. You’ll want to sink your toes into the double-deep pile — you’ll love its foot-pampering comfort. And, you’ll find it easy to use these lovely colors elsewhere in your rooms to create a beautiful harmonizing color scheme. Amazingly low priced!
3-dimensional textured, sculpted wall-to-wall carpet
Dinah Shore says… use cool accents and accessories for the warm color schemes, warm ones for the cool-toned room
6 fascinating new tweeds: Rich new BLUE tweed – a new GOLDEN tweed – The new IRIS tweed
ALSO SEE: 130 vintage ’50s house plans used to build millions of mid-century homes we still live in today