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Classical Furniture Styles - G Plan Furniture

Updated on November 11, 2013
Elegant Dining Set
Elegant Dining Set

Furniture Trends

Just like in fashion, trends in home furnishings and decor change over the years. However, they often come back round again several years after they have gone out of style, or even many decades later. With home furnishings we typically refer to this as retro, and retro design refers to the period between the 1940s and early 80s: Anything before this is considered vintage or antique.

Many items from the 50s and 60s are now greatly in demand as people are looking to buy retro furnishings. You do not have to completely furnish your home in either retro or modern styles, as a combination of the two often looks fabulous. If you flick through a magazine featuring home design, you will find that often they combine a mixture of the modern with the old. When choosing to design your house in this way, you can either look for genuine pieces from the 50s and 60s or you can buy furniture that has been made recently with a retro look. Because genuine furniture from the 50s and 60s is sometimes hard to come by at reasonable prices, you will probably find you end up with a couple of original pieces combined with some more recent furnishings.

G Plan Cabinet
G Plan Cabinet

G Plan furniture

During World War II there was rationing in the UK and furniture items were scarce. Most people therefore could not afford good furniture, and in 1943 a scheme was set up to regulate the type of furniture that could be purchased, which kept the cost of furniture down and also made sure that materials that were not required for the war effort were used to this purpose.The small number of items that could be purchased were usually made from oak or mahogany.

Around 1952 when the war was well and truly over, people began to complain about the lack of available furniture. A company called E Gomme Ltd had an idea to produce GPlan furniture, which was much more modern in design than the pieces that had previously been available. G Plan furniture was produced using the same style for several years, so people could buy one item one year and the following year purchase the next, without having to worry that the same style of furniture would no longer be available. In this way a family might buy a dining room table and chairs, and when money became available the following year, they would purchase a matching display cabinet.

G Plan furniture is now considered retro, but still can be bought as new today. It consists of many elegantly designed pieces that give a distinguished look to more modern homes.

Classical bedroom furniture is still manufactured today
Classical bedroom furniture is still manufactured today | Source

The 60s

Other styles of furniture available in the 1960s were those that had a distinct space-like appearance. This was probably due to the rising popularity of television, and also of course because the first man walked on the moon. However this style was more of a passing trend, and G Plan furniture remained very much in vogue until the mid-70s when brighter colours and more flamboyant styles took over,

Finding retro or G plan furniture in your local area maybe challenging, but you can try looking around second-hand stores. If this fails, a simple Internet search will bring up websites that sell G Plan furniture new, or you could look for second-hand original pieces on auction sites such as eBay.


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