Vintage Tropical in a Mid Century? You bet!


I have been collecting vintage tropical items for a few years. I especially love mid century pottery in all those luscious colors. And the offerings of bark cloth fabric are endless. It was such a durable fabric that all those drapes and curtains from years ago are still around and looking as great as ever. Incorporating this into a 1951 house was gonna be fun!

The small 3/4 bath off of the kitchen retains it original chrome edged sink and toilet. They are Univeral Rundle brand and from my research I think the color is “Verdant Green”.  It is a medium minty green. This bath has the same newer black and white tiled floor as my kitchen so I also have to work with that for now. Unfortunately the walls were  painted a nauseating chartreuse that clashed with the green. That had to go.

The grey color we painted the walls is from the Sherwin Williams Suburban Modern Collection. The trim and vanity were painted a bright white. I purchased chrome NOS round back plates from Ebay and dish style knobs from my local Ace Hardware. The window valance is also an Ebay find. It is a piece of tropical bark cloth in pale grey, burgundy, green and yellow. All I had to do was attach it to the clips on the curtain rod.

Hubby removed the original chrome medicine cabinet/mirror/lighting and cleaned and polished it. It is not perfect but works just fine. We replaced the switch plate covers with some vintage ones I got on Ebay in chrome. We also added simple towel bars that are similar to what would have been here originally. Over the toilet we added a chrome shelf/towel hanger for more storage. The original (and very disgusting) sink faucet was replaced with a simple chrome one from Lowes.

The shower door had been covered with a mirror so Hubby removed it to find  an etched swan motif; perfect for our tropical look! The shower had been recently tiled in white 4″ by 4″  squares and had new faucets; that was all fine.

My accessories were picked up here and there for very little. The reproduction Cuba poster was from Big Lots for $4. I finished off with old Miami travel postcards, a 1960’s sunlamp (still in the box with great graphics) and some vintage Florida souvenirs from garage sales. I spray painted a vintage swan towel holder green that matched the sink and toilet.  I finished off with grey and green striped  towels.

When the kitchen gets gutted, this space will probably get a serious overhaul; until then, I don’ t think it looks too bad.


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