Disco was “I Will Survive” and “Bad Girls,” the Bump and the Hustle, Studio 54 strafed with beams of color and swirling stars. After a decade of “good grooming is so square” counterculture, polished glitz returned to style and nightlife in the mid-1970s. And today, after two years of pandemic-driven caution and worry, interior design and fashion are embracing the expressive aesthetic again. “I think everyone is bursting at the seams to move. Now it’s like, ‘OK, let’s get dressed up. Let’s have a party,’” said interior designer Kelly Wearstler.
The Los Angeles product designer and entrepreneur collaborated with Dutch art collective Rotganzen on a collection of signed, limited-edition objets in the form of collapsed disco balls that sit up in corners or drape over ledges like Dali’s melting watches. Her playful series of mirrored blobs, dubbed Quelle Fête, launched in October, and a new edition of 150 pieces dropped in January. Said Ms. Wearstler of disco, “It’s about glamour, and it’s lively and festive, and I think that’s why you’ve seen a resurgence.”
Dolly Crystal Sandal In Gray Suede
Los Angeles architect and artist Rachel Shillander’s aptly named Disco Chair brings the sparkle to furniture. Though the perch resembles a soft bean bag, it’s actually a concrete shell that Ms. Shillander hand-covers in thousands of mirrored tiles. The seat fills the room with dancing light beams that shift throughout the day—like a classic disco ball, but no spinning is required.
In her collection with Studio M Lighting, Houston interior designer Nina Magon carries out her own riff on the storied orb. As light streams through the elliptical panels of her Megalith fixture, they shimmer in multiple colors. “We used an iridescent film on the glass of the fixture so that it would portray that iridescent effect from the ball,” she said.
Other furnishings focus on one brilliant ’70s-esque color, like the Rose mirror by Italian brand Covi e Puccioni. The rectangular looking-glass with round corners and a fuchsia ombré perimeter echo the flashing tiles on which John Travolta executed his iconic choreography as Tony Manero in 1977’s “Saturday Night Fever.”
Shimmer and glam lifted from the discothèque dance floor has also infiltrated the small screen: See the bedazzled peacock eyelids of characters in the HBO series “Euphoria,” courtesy of makeup artist Doniella Davy. On the runway, Paco Rabanne’s spring 2022 collection included ensembles that appeared constructed of tiny pavé mirrors, and Tom Ford’s ready-to-wear selection offers a silver sequined button-down shirt and pareo pants worthy of Evelyn “Champagne” King.
Everyone was changed by the pandemic, said Ms. Magon, and no one wants to play it safe anymore. “I think everyone, especially the designers, [is] trying to step out of the box and do something more fun, more eye-catching.” Who can blame them?