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Art Deco 1

Art Deco

Art Deco, short for Arts Décoratifs, is characterized by rich colors, bold geometry, and decadent detail work. Having reached the height of its popularity in the 1920s, ’30s, and ’40s, the style still brings in glamour, luxury, and order with symmetrical designs in exuberant shapes.

Art Deco

The characteristic features of Art Deco reflect admiration for the modernity of the machine and for the inherent design qualities of machine-made objects—e.g., relative simplicity, planarity, symmetry, and unvaried repetition of elements.

The elements of Art Deco

Each of these factors distilled Art Deco design into a number of recognizable stylistic characteristics:

  • Symmetry.
  • Layered shapes.
  • Intricate line art.
  • Rectilinear geometry.
  • Aerodynamic curves.
  • Metallic colors like gold and chrome.

Many accent pieces such as clocks, radios, and other common household are also manufactured in Art Deco design. The main characteristics to look out for in these Art Deco pieces are Bakelite, semi-circles, smooth lines, and muted color pallets consisting of red, green, orange, yellow, white, and black tints.

Art Deco vibe

Art Deco Retro Vibe is glamorous and vintage in equal doses, evoking glorious times in a modern way. Clean lines meet pastel colors and what follows is a story with a happy ending.

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The 3 main influences on Art Deco

From its outset, Art Deco was influenced by the bold geometric forms of Cubism and the Vienna Secession; the bright colors of Fauvism and of the Ballets Russes; the updated craftsmanship of the furniture of the eras of Louis Philippe I and Louis XVI; and the exoticized styles of China and Japan, India, Persia, ancient


Theme of Art Deco

Art Deco expressed all the vigor and optimism of the roaring twenties and the idealism and escapism of the grim thirties. Its decorative themes are Sunbursts and fountains – representing the dawn of a new modern age. The Skyscraper shape – is symbolic of the 20th century.

Art Deco and Art Nouveau?

Art Nouveau and Art Deco are two of the defining art movements of the 20th century, influencing all elements of visual culture, from fine art and design to architecture and graphic arts. Where Art Nouveau celebrates elegant curves and long lines, Art Deco consists of sharp angles and geometrical shapes.

Art Deco and modern

But whatever color direction you go, you’ll see it paired with metallics in the accent furniture, decor, and lighting. Modern Art Deco interior design mixes the key elements of this design style with other styles and eras, for a look that’s eclectic and unique. There are so many ways to bring this look to life today.

Art Deco vs mid-century modern

Art deco is glamorous, sophisticated, and bold whereas mid-century modern is more streamlined, minimalist, and purely functional. Art deco follows a lot of the same basic concepts like geometric shapes and high contrast but is embellished with intricate motifs inspired by technology rather than the natural world.


Common Motifs of Art Deco Style


The bold, fluid, and symmetrical motifs, patterns, and themes of art deco symbolized technological progress in various industries from transportation to architecture that transformed the country. Geometric, linearity, and angular forms characterize art deco design. The look is strong and bold with no fussiness or romance in sight. When you’re seeking art deco-inspired furniture or accessories

, look for several regularly occurring motifs, including:


  • Trapezoidal shapes
  • Zigzag patterns
  • Chevron patterns
  • Stepped forms
  • Sweeping curves
  • Sunburst shapes
  • Triangular shapes
  • Stylized wildlife
  • Sensuous, sometimes abstract, nude females
    Jagged, pointed edges inspired by skyscrapers (such as the Chrysler building)

Written by: Delight Interiors