living in: far from heaven


Far from Heaven is a color-drenched look at the darker side of a 1950s idealized life. Julianne Moore’s magazine-worthy house doesn’t save her from the town’s scorn when her marriage dissolves, but we can’t stop coveting it. Brightly colored leaves swirl around her family’s gorgeous mid-century setup, and if your seemingly perfect life has to crumble around you, you could be stuck in worse places. — Amy Merrick

1. Sunburst Wall Mirror, $308; 2. Clip-On Studs, $308; 3. Diana F + Lomo Camera, $94; 4. Iron Fireplace Tool Set, $193; 5. Vintage Ceramic Ashtray, $40; 6. Portola Armchair, $798; 7. Diner Heels, $109; 8. Revlon Lipstick in True Red, $10; 9. 1950s Side Table, $1200; 10. Gold Chain Bracelet, $67

Clean but comfortable mid-century furnishings can cushion a minor meltdown, when used appropriately. Warm teak, handmade ceramics, wooly textiles and classic accessories make a house infinitely cozier, even when the household is nearing complete disintegration. While we wouldn’t wish for the return of 1950s social standards on our worst enemies, the home life doesn’t look so bad from here.

1. George Nelson Spindle Wall Clock, $95; 2. Vintage Globe, $21; 3. Sara Paloma Bottle, $140/set of 3; 4. Canoga Pillow, $215; 5. Vintage Danish Wall Unit, $4900; 6. Pendleton Wool Plaid Throw, $88; 7. Dansk Classic Fjord Bread Tray, $47; 8. Convertible Sofa, $589; 9. 1950s Glazed Lamp; 10. Hemp Lamp Shade, $173

  1. Evelyn says:

    I LOVE VINTAGE ITEMS. I don’t care if it is clothes, furniture, or a plate that is sitting in my granny’s cabinet. It is just something about things from the old days that make you see how simple things really were back then!

  2. A great movie and a great period for furnishings. And a great job pulling all of this together!

  3. rebekka says:

    I absolutely LOVE this film, and have always geeked out over the colors when I watch it. I’ve been wondering when you would do a post on it…so happy to see it today :)


  4. Casey says:

    How is it possible that I’ve never even heard of this movie?! So far I’m loving everything (except that ceramic court jester-looking lamp). This movie is totally going on my netflix list! Thanks!

  5. I got that UO couch at their auction for $30 – brand new!

  6. margaret says:

    I only wish the Portola Armchair was $798. Casey, after you have seen this movie have a Douglas Sirk film fest, the director that inspired this movie. All That Heaven Allows (one of my favorite “Fall Movies”) , Magnificent Obsession, Imitation Of Life.. I love them!

  7. Megan K. says:

    I must have that sofa couch!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  8. This is one of my all time favourite films! Our house looks a little like this too. My fave era for furniture!

  9. I’m with Casey – I can’t believe I haven’t seen this! I would happily dispose of my belongings and replace them with everything in this post. And I’m pretty sure I’m in love with those dresses enough mortgage my house for one that fit. Why oh why are the vintage dresses so tiny?!?

  10. Casey says:

    Thanks for the tip, Margaret! I’ll check those titles out, too. Laura: totally! I was thinking of having my boyfriend watch this with me so I can tell him, “THAT’S what I want!”

  11. Courtney says:

    Well, they may have been afraid of women having too much power, but they definitely weren’t afraid of fabulous home decor!

  12. Still have a crush on Dennis Haysbert to this day (he is now commonly known as the Allstate guy). The design in this film seems to reflect a look and feeling of being trapped, or clausterphobia. There are lots of beautiful objects (of which Julianne Moore is one), but no harmony. Interesting subject!

  13. this movie was amazing!!! love that sofa and so wish i had it at home… :)

  14. Rachelle says:

    So spot-on fifties! Love this, Amy!

  15. my mother (and now my sister) owned four of the fruit plates she and the ladies are shown with in photo #5. I’d love to source those!

  16. Just like always, beautiful, inspiring pictures. I love vintage era.

  17. I love this movie. So dark and poignant. – very cool to see these pieces you found!

  18. Kelly says:

    Ah, one of my favourites—a beautiful, heartbreaking film. Julianne Moore is wonderful.

  19. Urban Mammal says:

    Love *love* LOVE the production design – particularly the saturated, autumnal colours – in this achingly beautiful film.

  20. I too have missed even hearing about this movie, but I do love vintage. (I will be adding to my Netflix, curious about the mentioned saturated colors).

    This collection you have gathered is wonderful for evoking the feel & look of the 195o’s. Love the globe, and that end table would work in just about any design theme. I want that table!

  21. lyndsay says:

    Far From Heaven is one of my favourite modern films… Todd Haynes’ tribute to Douglas Sirk melodramas of the 1950s. Everyone, if you love melodramas and sumptuous Technicolour and vintage stuff… seek out Douglas Sirk’s film! All That Heaven Allows and the very sad Imitation Of Life…

    The art direction and costume design in Far From Heaven is truly spectacular too…! Brilliant!

  22. I can’t wait to see this! And those dresses…

  23. Louise says:

    Just so happened to see this movie today, and it is a colorist’s dream. Seems to have been filmed through a dark filter, making the saturated color even moodier and more complex, to suit the story. It’s like a painting. Moved right up to one of my all time faves.

  24. Annie says:

    I knit the sweater that Dennis Quaid wears in the Christmas morning scene. This was a wonderful movie to work on!

  25. If you’re in Seattle, check out the new vintage furniture store Ten22home in Fremont. Or, visit his etsy page:


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