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The Re-imagination of a Gatsby Inspiration

It isn’t often that something earns the tag of “timeless.” To do so, it must maintain a classic and enduring appeal; immune to years, and any other elements that weather away at an aesthetic.

One thing that we believe that never goes out of style is the convergence of sound design and proper construction. Another thing is The Great Gatsby.

Tom confronts Jay Gatsby at The Plaza Hotel-The Great Gatsby, The New Traditionalists

As seen in our Gatsby Pinterest board, the classic American novel has been interpreted on screen by six different filmmakers and on the stage by countless production companies. Yet our favorite remains the novel itself, as it permits us to imagine the vast mansion and lavish parties through our own prism.

As we discussed in part one of our Gatsby Series, the wardrobes, interiors and overall aesthetic are affected greatly by the zeitgeist during which they are envisioned and recreated. While the basis for much of the aesthetic is classic, the interpretation gets re-imagined over and over, adapting and modernizing with time. However as much as an aesthetic changes, you can almost always trace it back to its origin, like the classic leather arm chair below.

When we envision a piece of furniture, we will often design around a single object, place or memory. The inspiration can be something as simple as a silk knit tie that is just that perfect shade of lavender, or something as extravagant as Grand Central Terminal. We are particularly moved by the climactic scene in which Tom confronts Gatsby inside a suite at the Plaza Hotel. The Plaza has set the standard for luxury for over a century, and is a classic New York landmark. Thus, we used this picture as inspiration for a new vignette in our showroom, re-imagining the scene with a more modern perspective.

The Great Gatsby, The Plaza Hotel; The New Traditionalists, Soho Showroom

Particularly inspiring to us was how the tones of the room contrasted with the pastels in the characters outfits. The lavender, baby blue, and canary yellow popping from the greys and whites of the furniture and walls.

 Both the classic silhouette and the color tones of Chair no. One Five work well with the time period and the specific vignette. While we used our Coffee Table no. Ninety in a lavender fine linen finish, our Coffee Table no. Fifty Nine (pictured above) could have been interchanged as it possesses a similar feel.

We also selected our nesting tables, no. Thirty Three, which resembled the side table used in the scene. Additionally, the color tones of this deco cover of a print of the book worked well as a backdrop for the pastels. Designing the vignette also got us thinking about some of our other pieces. As much of our furniture is based on our own contemporary tweaks to traditional silhouettes, when watching the original film, you can often find the predecessors to many of our pieces.

Here we see a gorgeous brown writing desk being used as a dining buffet. Our Desk no. Two Eleven shares a similar silhouette, however has a more contemporary feel and features upholstered drawer faces. In that very scene in the upcoming remake, we see a grand oval shaped dining table, similar to our Dining Table no. Seven Forty Six.

Similarly, our Loveseat no. Sixty Six and our Loveseat no. Seventy Seven are modern takes of a classic rounded back sofa like the one used in the Plaza Hotel scene (below).

We have always drawn inspiration from familiar places, and it was interesting to revive such a classic scene from The Great Gatsby right in our showroom. It was an exercise in design history, as we sought out the aesthetic origin of our pieces.

 

 

 

 

 

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Tags: 1920s Interiors, Baz Lurhmann, Carey Mulligan, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Gatsby furniture, Gatsby Interiors, Great Gatsby, Interior Design, Jay Gatsby, Jazz Age, Long Island, New York, NYC, Roaring 20s, Robert Redford, The Great Gatsby, Tobey Maguire

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