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The 34th anniversary of Elvis Presley’s death got me thinking… I’m truly envious of those who can say they attended an Elvis concert. My mother is one of those lucky souls who stood only a few yards from the stage. She said when Elvis grabbed the mic and did his notorious hip movements… she nearly passed out. And I remember when I was a child, Dad would play Elvis’ debut album Elvis Presley on his old record player. There’s nothing like the turntable crackling of “Blue Suede Shoes” bursting through the speakers. I may have been born into the boombox and Walkman generation, but I love the look and sound of a vintage record player. (Even ones for kids!)

Vintage-Record-Player-8-Track-Decor-HGTV-DesignHappens1. Vintage Steelman Record Player e :: Etsy / arksendeavors 2. Fisher-Price Record Player :: Etsy / OliveandFrances 3. Vintage Silvertone Record Player :: The Vintage Bazaar 4. Vintage Columbia Record Player :: Etsy / VitalVintage 5. Vintage Michael Jackson Record Player :: TINI 6. Vintage Panasonic 8-Track Tape Player :: Etsy / Retro4U 7. 1927 Hand-Crank Columbia Viva-Tonal Grafonola :: Etsy / dustyatticantiques 8. The Beatles 1983 Picture Album :: Etsy / DaysGoneBye 9. Bob Marley and the Wailers Picture Album :: Etsy / downthepipelines

I know, I know, the device that looks like a TNT detonator is not a turntable, but I had to give some design love to that red Panasonic eight-track player. It’s pretty sweet, especially considering the bad rap eight-track tapes get. And how is it that I hadn’t heard of “picture discs” before now?

What do you think of using vintage electrics as decor? Do you prefer the sound of a record on the turntable over a modern-day digital device? Would you hang a “picture disk” as instant art?

Tell us in the comments below.

5 Responses

  1. CplusE says:

    What do you mean decorate with vintage electronics — we still use them! LOL! Seriously, I actually attempted to use our old record player the other day, but unfortunately it wasn't working. Hopefully it is just a loose wire somewhere and I can get it going again — my old Jim Croce, Don McLean, Cat Stevens, and Linda Ronstadt albums haven't gotten a workout in a while (wow, now I've really dated myself!). I didn't become an Elvis fan until long after he was gone, but I've got some cassettes and CDs of his music now and like to play them in the car when I'm driving (and yes, my car is old enough to have a CD and a cassette player). I love low-tech gadgets! And I even have some old 45s kicking around somewhere, which I think might make some interesting wall art since I obviously haven't listened to them in a very long time. ^_^

    • Kayla@HGTV says:

      CplusE – Actually, it wasn't too long ago that my parents finally realized that the old record player was past its prime. And unfortunately, it wasn't a retro player in a stylish red case. It was a massive brown player with a clear plastic top (with cracks). A few years back I pulled out Dad's boxes of records and surprised him with a brand new, vintage-inspired record player. He <3ed it! (And I have to say, I LOVE Jim Croce and can remember my Mom blaring it over the speakers on cleaning days. Oh, and Carol King, too.)

  2. Elemnope says:

    I love your post about vintage decorating and Elvis! Long live The King!! When I read "turntable crackling", my mind instantly went back to my first record player. It was huge and wasn't anything special to look at, and if it were still around today it might make an interesting looking coffee table. Still makes me envious of all those cool looking ones like you have pictured above! Can't wait to hit the yard sales this weekend in hopes of finding some vintage record players to test my decorating skills! I'll make you proud HGtv!!

  3. LollyP says:

    I have a vintage record player that lives in my 2 year olds room. Its red and looks like a small suitcase. Adorable. We literally play it every day. I think Winnie the Pooh is on there now. I have been collecting the Disney Magic Mirror series for some time to pass on to my wee one. Oh yes, I have some James Taylor, Carole King and Barbra in the mix, but nothing takes me back or makes me feel more nostalgic than listening to the crackling of Peter Pan. I listened with my brothers and sisters to that over and over as a child. Can't believe I don't have Elvis . . . yet! I DID, say this is my daughters record player, right?? :-)

  4. [...] is for our Design Happens fans with a passion for music. I had so much fun scouring the web for vintage record player decor earlier this week that I had to do a second post. Upcycling everyday items not only ensures that [...]

Kayla KittsKayla is a special projects editor at HGTV.com and a co-editor-in-chief for Design Happens. Kayla is an overbearing cat mom with a love for vintage-modern furniture, artisan cocktails, organizing all...


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