• Tell Your Friends

It’s time for another installment of Defend the Trend. Find out what happens when HGTV editors stop being polite (“That’s cute, but not my style!”) and start getting real

BRIANA: I’m totally sneaking this one in while LILI is away because I know she hates it, but how bout this ‘70s brass étagère?

70s brass etagereI don’t want to put words in her mouth, but I bet she thinks it belongs in a musty old wood-paneled rec room/basement. I see hypothetical Lili’s hypothetical point, HOWEVER I love it as a bar or bookshelf. What say you to the étagère – or the ‘70s glam thing in general?

MARIE: If somebody held a zucchini to my head and said, “You must put this in your house,” I’d stick it in a walk-in closet and pile sweaters and jeans on it.

CAMILLE: Ugh. Mr. Furley called and he wants his bar back. Not in my house; however, covered in some cheap orange shag, it would make a rockin’ cat condo. For cats that are swingers, obviously.

LIZ: I want to like this, as I generally like elements of ’70s glam…but no.  It’s too freaking big. Empty, the giant piece reminds me of a throwback treadmill for gerbils (they’d run to an endless loop of Saturday Night Fever, obv.) Camille’s swinging cats would be there, too: http://www.eclectech.co.uk/b3ta/discocat.gif.html

I hate it much less in the office with the larger items and the memo board to offset its giant-ness and the gray background.

KELLEY: Dude. I just bought a ’76 rancher. You couldn’t move this into my dining room fast enough!

MARIANNE: I’m having a major brass/’70s moment, as both my house and myself were born into this world in 1977. I say yay.

GRANT: I’ve stared at it. I’ve come at it with a quick glance. I even grabbed my feel-good potato chips and revisited it with a happy stomach. No matter how I come at this thing, I can’t make myself like it. Honestly, I detest it in a full-body shiver kind of way.

LILI: Only email I’m responding to from vacation. This is the kind of piece that only Emily Henderson can make work in very narrow conditions. But dear God! I hate it so.

KELLEY: Emily, eh? You really wanna throw down that gauntlet?

MARIANNE: Lili, I both agree with you and think I COULD TAKE THIS ON.

BRIANA: Marianne, please take this on!!! New hallway installation!!!

Haters gonna hate.

MARIANNE: The next six months of my job are now devoted to wearing you all down until you love the Etagere. BOW DOWN!

So, basically, Kelley, Marianne and I are the only ones standing for this retro number. Guess we really are Three’s Company (as our coworker Leanne described the piece). What do YOU think?



Design Trends

17 Responses

  1. Monica Jenkins says:

    I'm fine with the shape of it, but it's just so brassy looking. If it was pewter-like in color, it would look fantastic.

  2. DRJ says:

    Kind of tacky in a 'groovy' kind of way.

  3. [...] You Love or Loathe This Glam ’70s Throwback? HGTV Design Happens Fri, June 8, 2012 8:00 PM UTC HGTV Design Happens Rate Share (function(){var [...]

  4. CplusE says:

    I was so hoping that brass furniture had gone extinct, like the '70s polyester leisure suit and eight-track tape player. If you guys bring back macramé and waterbeds I swear I will track you down! Just kidding, but I sure hope that brass étagère will do "The Hustle" and "Boogie Oogie Oogie" its way back to the '70s where it belongs!

  5. miami says:

    I think if you have a home that carries this look through out the home. As you can see by the photo, the light fixture goes well with it, and it carries the same style. I especially like the bar. Vintage modern. Love it.

  6. Heather Davis says:

    I actually used to own something like this – in the 70's. I don't like it as a bar but I do like it in the office if I had to choose. Still prefer wood but it would work well in a 70's style home.

  7. Heather Davis says:

    Me again, All I can think of is the endless dusting and cleaning that these things took. I had forgotten that part. Nothing worse than dusty, dirty brass and glass. Even just dusting around all the items and not moving them, which I admit to doing, is a horrible job.

  8. Amy says:

    The shape is ok – could come across quite modern if styled correctly. But, the brass is just bad!

  9. MNLass says:

    Would I go shopping for it? NO!!! Would I buy it at a yard/garage sale for a few $$? Yes, absolutely! Then I would run (not walk) to the nearest hardware or craft store, get some Rustoleum texture spray paint to cover the brass, and have a ball converting it to a modern, up-to-date, upcycled plant stand. There's enough space in between the shelves to handle plants with height. There's enough width in the shelves to do trailing plants (like pothos or ivy) in front and tall plants (like mother-in-law tongue) in back. And it's large enough to cover a whole wall, if necessary. It would also be great in front of a huge window (instead of curtains or drapes). And best of all, no more damaging the wood with overflows or spills because the shelves are glass! (I might try to squeeze in a kitty bed on the bottom.) On second thought, maybe I WILL go shopping for just that! Thrift stores—here I come!

  10. Linda says:

    I am guessing the ones who do not like it are also the people who feel they have to paint all wood furniture, usually distressed white. I had one of these back in the 70's and if I still had it I would paint the brass to modernze it, otherwise it is a good useful piece of furniture if you have the room for it. Of the 70's period I have to say I will take this over the colors of the time, orange, line green etc. Sorry hate to see them making a comeback.

Briana MowreyBriana is a writer and senior editor for HGTV.com. Her self-described design style is "mid-century modern magpie." She lives in a Brooklyn apartment with her husband, their spoiled dachshund, Chauncey,...


See What We’re Pinning

  • Thanksgiving Centerpiece Ideas: Acorn Place Card Holder

  • Thanksgiving Centerpiece Ideas: A Giving Tree >>

  • Thanksgiving Centerpiece Ideas: Fall Harvest Centerpiece

  • Thanksgiving centerpiece ideas: DIY Cornucopia >>