Defining the Hollywood Regency Style and Why Its Maximalist Design Choices are Popular Today
Hollywood Regency Design Dates Back to the 1930s – But Its Glam Style is Trending Again
The Hollywood Regency interior design style is all about classic celebrity glamour. In fact, it is difficult to talk about Hollywood Regency without acknowledging the Golden Age of cinema that helped bring the design style to the screen and popularize the Southern Californian movement throughout the country. The Hollywood Regency style was created to serve as a luxurious background to highlight glamorous celebrities doing fashionable activities, like sipping martinis in silk bathrobes. The style is meant to convey the glitz and glamour of the silver screen. Nothing quite stacks up to the chic looks of Jean Harlow reading magazines in her over-the-top bedroom, Katharine Hepburn caring for a pet leopard, or Marilyn Monroe catching her dress over a subway grate. The Hollywood Regency style brings this elegance home through maximalist design, lacquered furniture, mirror, crystal, and animal print. Our San Antonio interior designers and architects define the Hollywood Regency style, design elements that make up the look, key figures that helped ignite the movement, and why the style remains popular decades later.
Defining Hollywood Regency Style
Hollywood Regency, also known as Regency Moderne, is a design style popularized during Hollywood’s Golden Era from the 1930s through the 1950s. It combines elements of 19th century Regency, Art Deco, and mid-century modern design styles to create spaces that are sleek and modern but also opulent and over-the-top. The Hollywood Regency style evokes glamorous and maximalist design, combining many elements to form richly layered looks with different textures, colors, patterns, and metallic finishes.
The Elements of Hollywood Regency Design
Hollywood Regency design pulls from many other design styles, allowing interior designers and architects to design highly curated spaces with a glamorous flair. In Hollywood Regency schemes, you can find high contrast black and white patterns from the Regency Era, bold use of metallics pulled from the Art Deco style, and streamlined furniture from the mid-century movement. Here are some of the most popular elements of Hollywood Regency design.
Sometimes, more is more! Hollywood Regency design doesn’t hold back and unapologetically embraces maximalist style with open arms. While other luxurious design schemes can feel stuffy, Hollywood Regency aims to convey glamour with a less serious approach. Don’t be afraid to have fun and make bold choices.
Hollywood Regency style features mirrored furniture, mirrored walls, and accent mirrors to reflect light, enhance the illusion of space, and provide an enchanting place to check your hair at every corner. Popular accent mirror styles include starbursts, bamboo designs, and opulent gold trim.
Hollywood Regency embraces the shine. Lacquered wall paneling, trim, and furniture are all popular choices. It is common to see antique pieces refinished in a lacquered paint to reignite them with a new sense of luxury.
Leather pieces, like tufted Chesterfield sofas, were popular during the peak of Hollywood Regency design. Accent pieces made from snakeskin and crocodile also added a touch of aspirational style, typically reserved for the ultrawealthy.
Animal prints, including zebra and leopard, appeared on everything from textiles to wallpapers to carpeting. The unrestricted use of animal print paired with bold colors and contrasting patterns achieves the playful yet opulent look of Hollywood Regency design.
Color and Pattern
Popular Hollywood Regency colors include pink, turquoise, yellow, black, and white. Bold colors were often incorporated into patterns like checks, chevron, stripes, and palm prints.
The History of Hollywood Regency Design
Origins of Hollywood Regency Style
The Hollywood Regency style pulls from the 19th century Regency Era, which was inspired by antiquity and aimed to create functional living spaces layered with an aspirationally luxurious feel. Hollywood Regency incorporated original Regency design elements as well as influences from the Art Deco and mid-century modern styles that were simultaneously rising in popularity during the time. Closely tied to Hollywood cinema, the opulence of the design style hinged on escapism and aimed to transport audiences out of their own lives and into a more glamorous world. Hollywood Regency trends made their way into the homes of celebrities, magazines, and across the country.
The Design Influence of Dorothy Draper
Dorothy Draper was an anti-minimalist interior designer who is largely credited with establishing the Hollywood Regency design style as well as coining the term “Modern Baroque.” Her designs embraced bold color, contrasting patterns, and opulent materials like gold and crystal. She was commissioned to design famous hotels like the Carlyle and Greenbrier, gave design advice in numerous publications, and popularized the color red as a classic choice for the front door. Draper’s style is known for taking classical pieces and reimagining them in a new bold color or material choice, like the lacquered antique pieces common in Hollywood Regency design. Her work would influence modern designers like Kelly Wearstler, Jonathan Adler, and Miles Redd who all continue the tradition of adding a flair of glamour in their interiors.
The Inspiration Behind the Maximalist Designs of Miles Redd
The modern interiors of Miles Redd are very much so inspired by the Hollywood Regency design movement and the work of Dorothy Draper. His rooms feature a maximalist approach paired with bold colors, animal prints, contrasting patterns, and revitalized antiques with a twist. While Hollywood Regency peaked with the Golden Age of Hollywood, it is clear that the style remains appealing and relevant today.
Hollywood Regency Design Elements are Present in Today’s Maximalist Interiors
While trends of minimalist decors have come and gone in the last decade, it is clear that there is an ever-present draw to maximalist design and luxurious comforts. In the so far turbulent 2020s, we’ve seen a dramatic shift back to design styles like Art Deco and Hollywood Regency, which were also popular during the era of the Great Depression. Sometimes when the outside world leaves us wanting more, it is nice to find a touch of glamour and escapism in our homes.
If you’re looking to refresh your home with a bit of Hollywood Regency sophistication and fun, contact our Texas-based interior designers and architects for a consultation.