Design Styles Explained: Hollywood Regency

I mentioned in my overview of design styles that huge shouts need to go out to 2 big names in Hollywood Regency, Dorothy Draper and William Haines. An interior design blogger, Kerry Ann Dame, elaborates on the two’s influence on Hollywood Regency perfectly, so definitely give it a read. I couldn’t have said it better myself.

To sum it up, Dorothy was the first real “Interior Designer”starting in  the 20’s. Billy was a Hollywood actor on those cool old timey sets in the 20’s, who later focused on interior design as a profession in the 30’s. They both were super influential on interior design with their dramatic and flamboyant styles.

Dorothy Draper’s iconic Greenbrier Hotel via Sybartic Spaces
Joan Crawford’s living room by William Haines via Circa Who

The term”Regency” was used for this style because there was a nod to Neoclassic design. The historical term “regency” started in 1811 when Britain’s George IV acted as King Regent when his father, King George III suffered from mental illness late in his reign. George the IV lived extravagantly and had quite an influence on fashion. During that time, there was a a great rediscovery of classic Greek and Roman architecture, often through archaeological digs, such as unearthing Pompeii. Hollywood Regency starting in the 20’s had a reemergence of lust for the Classic design.

Brighton, the retreat of King George IV, “Regency” style influence, 1826. This is a perfect example of the opulence the late 20’s and 30’s movies were trying to recapture.


– Period Photos of Hollywood Regency – 

From Emily Evans Eerdmans Book Regency Redux. The style in England was named Vogue Regency. This style was popular in the 1920's and 1930's and was based on the Neoclassical styles of the 19thc. This is classic Hollywood Regency by Billy Haines for Joan Crawford:
Another William Haines living room *
Love this: Still from A Single Man by Eduard Grau / Weinstein Co. via the L.A. Times.:
Set still from “A Single Man” *
Regency Redux. This set design of the 1930's shows how Hollywood Regency was the style that was made popular by the great black and white movies of this time:
a Hollywood set

– How to Identify Hollywood Regency Interior Design – 

It’s generally an eclectic mix of gorgeous vintage pieces painstakingly collected over years of glamorous travel. Pieces aren’t very large so that the people sitting in them stand out. It’s often more classically tailored pieces, with a touch of flair, like these stunning chairs.

Vintage Hollywood Regency One-Armed Chairs by Prince Howard Furniture of KC, Mo | From a unique collection of antique and modern chairs at
Gorgeous vintage Hollywood Regency chairs *

Hollywood Regency is punctuated by reflective surfaces – metals, mirrors, and later in the years, Lucite.

Pair of Regency Style Lucite and Brass Side Tables by Charles Hollis Jones:
Hollywood Regency Lucite cocktail table *
Designer Gold Guilded Screen / Room Divider, sharing luxury designer home decor inspirations and ideas for beautiful living rooms, dinning rooms,     bedrooms & bathrooms inc furniture, chandeliers, table lamps, mirrors, art, vases, trays, pillows &     accessories courtesy of InStyle Decor Beverly Hills enjoy & happy pinning:
Fabulous Hollywood Regency gold screen *

Screens were everywhere.

found check out area by heather scott home and design:
Hollywood Regency mirrored console *

– Modern Interpretations of Hollywood Regency Interior Design –

You can’t see it well in the old Hollywood set photos above, but color was tantamount. Wallpapers with big, leaf designs were used widely, but the old black and white photos don’t show them off.

Lighting plays a pivotal role in bring sheen to Regency themed intereiors:
Canary yellow Hollywood Regency doors *
Sunburst mirrors are perfect fits for the Hollywood Regency style interiors:
I love that it’s almost a Minimalist Hollywood Regency via Decoist
gorgeous Lacquered Hollywood Regency Desk & that chair ....:
That mirror is to die for *

– My Moodboard for a Hollywood Regency Living Room – 

OB-Hollywood Regency
My Hollywood Regency Moodboard

I used the same pair of gorgeous high-back chairs as I did in my traditional moodboard for my Design Styles Explained: Traditional post. It’s kind of like reality, where you have pieces that you love but you want to experiment with a different style.

Do you love Hollywood Regency? This was a very fun post to research and design.

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