1960s DIY projects – geometric wall treatment, vertical lanterns

60s DIY relief wall treatment

Here are two quite beautiful DIY projects from the 60s, both found in The Practical Encyclopedia of Good Decorating and Home Improvement, Greystone Press, 1970. Most of what you find in the book is a bit kitschy, but these two ideas seemed brilliant. The instructions are a little minimal, but a pair of fairly resourceful people could probably figure them out. Caption for the white relief wall treatment above: “Cover a wall with lattice molding. Between two 1x2s, space as many strips of lath as you need and nail them in place. Cut a diagonal strip at top and a circle in the middle. Nail and cement the lath to the wall, but slightly offset the sections. Paint the entire surface in flat white.”

60s DIY lamp made from bamboo lanterns

This lamp is attractive, and with the new LED Christmas light strings, it would be easy to make without threat of burning the rice paper. These lampshades are cheap to buy, but the effect when they’re strung together is more than the sum of its parts. “Paper lampshades come in a multitude of shapes and sizes – here we have a cylinder, an oblate spheroid, and globes in three sizes. This cheap but glamorous installation was made by sewing the shades together with wire wrapped around the wood frames. Illumination is provided by a Christmas tree light string carrying small frosted bulbs of low wattage.”

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