01 of 09
1940s Kitchen Style
A Totally Different 1940s Kitchen...
It's perpetually a quarter-to-five in this incredible 1940s kitchen. Hubby is due home any minute from the station... But where is dinner, Lois?
The true star of this photo was supposed to be the linoleum flooring (as this came from an Armstrong Flooring publication).
But get a gander at the whole rounded-off-ness of this joint! You'll find nary a straight line or right angle here.
About These Photos
All of these photos are a fanciful, not real, depiction of a house from the mid-1940s. They come from a publication called Portfolio of Room Interiors, by Hazel Dell Brown. Ms. Brown was the chief interior designer of Armstrong World Industries Inc. of Lancaster, Pa. She died in 1982. Photos were distributed through the Internet Archive. Direct link below.
See a Manhattan kitchen from 1936.Continue to 2 of 9 below.
02 of 09
1940s Kitchen in Red, White, and Black
This Forties kitchen is the opposite of the previous one. Whereas that kitchen was as curvy as a '46 Hudson, this one is all sharp angles and ka-pow! colors.
Once again, linoleum is the focus of this kitchen. It's composed of several types, one of which Armstrong called Chinese Red Linoleum.
This kitchen is illusory, hardly practical. Imagine squeezing into that breakfast bar's back two chairs. And what a rickety table, too!
See other kitchens of the 20th century here.Continue to 3 of 9 below.
03 of 09
1940s Kitchen Full of Blue Linoleum
Small, Garden-y Forties Kitchen...
The accompanying literature for this Forties kitchen says that linoleum is used not just for the flooring, but for sink surround and countertops, as well. Linoleum was touted as being "clatterproof, easy to clean, and resistant to stain."
Now, here's the part that's hard to believe. See those scalloped swags up near the ceiling? Even those were cut from linoleum.Continue to 4 of 9 below.
04 of 09
Small 1940s Kitchen With Metal Cabinets
'Naughty' Bathroom? No, Just 'Knotty." See Why...
The accompanying text says that this kitchen is small--"6 feet square." I suspect that this doesn't mean "6 square feet," rather 6' x 6' for a total of 36 square feet.
Metal cabinets were all the rage in kitchens of the 1940s to 1950s--until plywood and MDF took over.Continue to 5 of 9 below.
05 of 09
1940s Home With Bathroom in Colonial Style
A bathroom from 1946 done in a Colonial style with knotty pine, scallops, and Shaker-inspired fabrics.
That rectangle to the very left of the picture, right above the magazine rack: that's a medicine cabinet. It's located in the toilet alcove.
This is a prime example of the type of bathroom that enlightened folk 30 years later would rip out with disgust--to replace with bathroom shag, marble-swirled stick-on 12" mirror tiles, and toilet fuzzies.Continue to 6 of 9 below.
06 of 09
1940s Bathroom is Designed to Be Modern, Swanky
Guess Where This Dining Room Comes From...
As down-home as is that last Colonial bathroom, this 1940s bathroom is the epitome of modern and sophisticated.
The shower is enclosed in a glass cabinet and with a curtain at the door.Continue to 7 of 9 below.
07 of 09
Design of 1940s Dining Room
Not Your Average Tom, Dick, or Larry's Bedroom...
What style is this? Initially I thought this dining room was supposed to have a Grecian flavor, with that crenelated pattern along the table cloth. But it's apparently supposed to be something else:
Ms. Brown, the author, says that the linoleum floor has a "Chinese fret design with a center of black..."Continue to 8 of 9 below.
08 of 09
1940s Bedroom: Designed Just For Children
When Books Mattered...
The custom linoleum lets us know the bedroom belongs to none other than Tom, Dick, and Larry. At that time, it was possible to order up linoleum flooring with special "name plate inserts."
You're looking at not one bed but three. Yes, three nested beds, one on top of the other. Come bedtime, the brothers three would simply slide out the beds and snooze.Continue to 9 of 9 below.
09 of 09
Incredible Book-Filled Foyer
Whether you say "Foy-AY" or "Foy-ERR," it's the same patrician, book-lined hallway where Tom, Dick, or even little Larry might have lounged on the stairs, learning of the world from that precursor to Wikipedia--paper-based encyclopedias.