June 17, 2010

Vintage Outer Space Wallpaper

Way, way back when I first started with my home retro-vation, it began in a little corner of the house known as Junior's Room.

Junior's room had a cowboy theme originally, and it was somewhat vintage in design too, because naturally since I have to be the overly-involved father that I am, I was the one who'd put it together :) He had Indian blankets on the bed, a horse blanket for a rug, a log shelf, cowboy lamp, horse shoes, retro cowboy curtains, a horse mural painted on one wall, and his endless toy horse collection. Oh, and don't forget his Woody figure (he's not a doll - boys don't have dolls!).

Shockingly, Junior grew since then and continues to grow. And it was time to let his room grow up a notch or two in an attempt to keep up with him. Junior decided he would like a space-theme for his new decor (with a little gentle coaxing from the overly-involved father) and I knew exactly what I had in mind, errr, I mean... so that he'd approve of it.

The first thing I did was to paint the walls in a deep rich shade, named "Planetarium Blue." This is a kid's room after all, so bold colors are appropriate. My idea was to then recreate a vintage space-theme wallpaper design on the blue walls through home-made stencils printed off the computer. That's getting ambitous, but sometimes it pays off to do crazy things no sensible person would attempt to do. And I'm all about doing the crazy thing...

Soooo, I searched for the right space-themed pattern to use on Junior's walls. That was a couple of years ago. And I'm still collecting samples and looking.

It began with these examples above in my little library. They provided me with the spark to start with. But these were not very clear, definitely not enough for a decent reproduction. I knew better than to design my own pattern, because I'm hopelessly critical of my own work, especially if it means looking at it day in and day out. Being a picky artist type has its disadvantages :/

Early on I ran across this example which is way-out awesome!! The pattern reminds me of a pair of PJ's I had as a kid. It's a custom retro wallpaper made for the movie MIB back in 1997 (has it been that long already?).

Yes, the site Design Your Wall is offering this as an actual wallpaper to the general public. But at $98.99 per 30' roll, the price is way-out too :/

Aside from that, Design Your Wall is THE site to browse for a wide range of vintage wallpaper designs... especially for kids! Cowboys, Circus, Nursery... they've got it and more.

And then I have to share one of the stunningly stellar examples which I found recently at 1950's Atomic Ranch House! I don't know much about the lady who runs this site, but I hear she has a hip-happening blog. You might want to check it out ...heh! ;)~ Thanks Atomic Ranch Lady!

Birds of Ohio has a few examples too, some 70's space wallpapers and a Flash Gordon Print from the 40's. Nice, but not exactly what I had in mind though.

If you know of any more fantastic vintage space themes (or any vintage kids room themes), and would like to share them here, Please do! I'd be forever grateful.

= = =

Some other links with retro outer space themes for kids rooms:
My Retro Baby Space Theme Gallery
L.A. Rugs Solar System Kids Rug - Stylehive


1950's_atomic_ranch_house said...

:::Drool::: Ok the one with the green background is sooooo cool... But fuggedabowdit on the price :scam:scam:

And look at the super cool atomic planet design in the black and white photos!

Oh man, and lucky Jr! I bet his space room will be way cooler than my old lady vintage space room!!

On the topic of endlessly critical of our own artwork, well...... I could tell stories! Then I'd tell you about the times I entered less-than-remarkable artworks at art shows, only to have them walk away with Best In Show whoo hoo lol... (Yeah, I was critical of judges who didn't give me First when I thought I deserved it, but hey, who am I to dispute that awesome generous First Place prize money? *smirk*)

Will be on the lookout for vintage space wall paper and such for you. Because I'm still scouting for the same!

Space Commander said...

LoL, I posted this with you in mind, yanno... you have such awesomely good taste!

Junior'll prolly be in college when I get my act together and finish his walls. And I love that 2nd bedroom (and the goodies in it)... it kills me that the publisher didn't include a hi-res close-up of that pattern just for me to swipe - it'd be Perfect!

First place money wouldn't hurt my feelings one bit either :D

1950's_atomic_ranch_house said...

I swear I posted my roll of vintage space wall paper twice, but you think I can find it now? But it's not the kind of cool I think you are thinking of, it has some bright colors, sort of creeping into the hippy era colors... Not that there's anything wrong with that, but it's not exactly "1950's" cool... More like late 60's cool.

But it was $1, how could I say no? =)

Off to check eBay for more space items!

Doc Atomic said...

Wow. Looking forward to the end result...

BTW, endless well of nerdosity that I am, I couldn't help but notice the ray guns in the photo third from the top. Where'd this pic come from, a Louis Marx ad? Almost every toy in it, near as I can tell, is made by Marx. And many of them are Tom Corbett: Space Cadet licensed pieces.

You've got the great Atomic Rifle hanging on the wall, along with a Signal Ray Gun (bottom) and the Rex Mars Sparking Gun (the pistol on the left). The rocket toy on the headboard is definitely Tom Corbett, and I'd wager the figures are from the play set. The rocket sitting on the chair... that's based on the early Buck Rogers and Flash Gordon rockets produced by Marx in the Thirties. I can't remember, though, if they released a version of the rocket branded with Tom Corbett.

Oddly enough, the thing on the dresser is, I believe, a Space Patrol helmet. I don't think it was produced for Tom Corbett, either. And I'm almost positive that Marx didn't even make it -- though I guess I could be wrong about this one.

There are a couple other toys on the wall -- a plane thing and something I can't make out under the rifle -- that have got me scratching my head, but all in all, this is definitely a room I'd have loved to have visited!

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