Thomas Robinson

20 Quirky Remnants of 70s Household Culture That’ll Make You Cringe Today

If you grew up in the 70s, you will remember the unique decor that adorned everyone’s home. From avocado-colored bathroom suites to brown floral wallpaper, we take a look at 20 weird things every 70s house had you won’t find in homes today:

Plastic Slip Covers on Furniture

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Plastic slipcovers over sofas and other key furniture pieces helped keep homes in shape in the 70s. While they were not aesthetically pleasing, they were durable and cost-effective for many Americans striving to keep a lovely home. 

Lava Lamps

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These funky lamps featured a colorful, waxy substance that flowed up and down in a glass column filled with liquid. They were famous for their mesmerizing and relaxing effect and could be found in many homes in the 70s. 

Shag Carpet

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Shag carpeting was all the rage in the 70s, and people had it in all colors. While it was a magnet for dust and dirt, it looked the part and was so comfy to walk on. 

Wringer Washers

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Wringer washers consisted of a tub for washing clothes, an agitator to move the clothes through the water, and a wringer mechanism to remove excess water from the clothes. This washing method was popular in the 70s but was very time-consuming compared to modern-day machines. 

Wood Paneling

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Wood paneling on the walls was popular in many 70s homes, in every room for some people. The paneling was thought to give the room a warm and cozy feel, but critics felt it made rooms look dark and claustrophobic. 

Wallpapered Walls

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While not strange in itself, the wallpaper of the 70s drew a lot of attention. The intricate designs of the modern day took over from loud patterns in bright colors that adorned the walls for the decade. 

Floral Sofas

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Not content with bold patterns on wallpapers, homes in the 70s were likely to have had a floral sofa in an equally busy fashion. While this sofa style didn’t always look great, they sure were comfortable.

Rotary Telephones

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Dial phones were an essential part of everyone’s household in the 70s. Instead of moving around the home freely with a cell phone, you were confined to a small area as the phone was attached to a wall. 


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Waterbeds had a mattress filled with water and were popular in the 1970s due to their comfort. The novelty soon wore off when people realized they were a lot of hassle and replaced them with traditional mattresses. 

Record Players

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People loved to dance in the 70s, and a home was the only one with an essential record player. Vinyl accounted for at least 50% of the music market share from 1973 until 1984, as people could not get enough of dancing around their living rooms and showing off their moves. 

Wood Burning Stoves

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Wood-burning stoves were popular in the 70s because they were a cheap and efficient way to heat the home, often more significant than homes built today. They gave rooms a rustic feel and were comforting on cold days and in long winters. 


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Before the days when computers were available in every home, typewriters were the communication tool of choice. While they were heavy and often frustrating, the beauty of writing a letter on one was second to none. 

Colored Appliances

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If there was one thing people loved in the 70s, it was color. Colored refrigerators, colored toasters, colored kitchen cupboards, and even colored bathrooms were part and parcel of every ’70s home. 

Psychedelic Wall Art

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To make their homes unique, homeowners in the 70s chose custom artwork to adorn thermals and show off their style. This vibrant art is less common in homes today as people choose toned-down art for a neutral effect. 

Patterned Carpets

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Like wallpaper and furnishings, carpers were bright and bold for ultimate effect. Carpets were usually thick with a heavy pile as they had to be comfortable for all that dancing!

Rattan Furniture

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People in the 70s loved rattan furniture so much that they had it indoors and outdoors. These days, rattan furniture is usually found in garden furniture or conservatories but could be found in every room in the 70s. 

Cuckoo Clocks

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Cuckoo clocks remained popular in the 70s and could be found in many homes in the U.S. They were big and flashy, much like many aspects of 70s home decor. The average home in the U.S. cost $ 23,400 in the 70s, and many people wanted to decorate it the best they could to make the best of their property. 

Crocheted Blankets

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Crocheted blankets allowed ’70s homeowners to show off their crafting skills and impress friends who came over for dinner parties. As with most things in the 70s, crochet belts were full of color and had some interesting patterns. 

Floating Stairs

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Homeowners in the 70s had a flair for futuristic and modern design elements, with many investing in floating staircases. Wood and concrete were the common materials used to build these stairs, but the cost was too much for some, and the trend gradually faded. 

Linoleum Floors

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Linoleum floors in the kitchen and bathrooms allowed people to cover their floors cheaply and clean them easily. Linoleum floors came on pots of colors and patterns, adhering to the styles of the 70s. 

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