I Became an Interior Designer Because of the Brady Bunch

I Became an Interior Designer Because of the Brady Bunch
July 12, 2019

“Here’s the story. Of an interior designer. Who owes her caree-er to a show.” [you’re welcome for the ear worm]

Let’s be clear: no, I’m not an interior designer because of the Bradys’ wood paneling and avocado green appliances. Sure, it was groovy and stylish in its time, but let’s leave that shiz back in the 70s, shall we?

The Bradys: the original

Who didn’t love this charming blended family with handsomely permed architect Mike Brady, perky Carol, a perfect match up of girls and boys, a fluffy dog named Tiger, and a plucky housekeeper to keep it all in check? I simply adored the Bradys and I loved what seemed like, to my 7 year old brain, their positively palatial Southern California home with their postage stamp sized astroturf backyard. I loved it all except for one glaring thing…

The exterior of the Brady Bunch house didn’t match the interior layout.

I can’t begin to tell you how aggravating it was to me to see the home’s exterior after each commercial break because it just screamed incongruity error to me. (Okay, so maybe I didn’t have the word incongruity in my vocabulary yet, but it was ALL WRONG and I knew it.)

You noticed too, right?

Ladies and gentlemen of the 1970s TV sitcoms jury, I offer you Exhibit A, the exterior:

The Brady Bunch 1969 1974
Photo by ABC/Paramount/Kobal/REX/Shutterstock

This is clearly a split level home with the second floor oriented on the left side of the house as you face the front. I highly doubt that tiny second story could house Mom and Dad plus six kids, and, eventually, Greg’s far-out attic room.

Exhibit B, the interior:

Brady Bunch Interior
Hello, sexy staircase

So what does that have to do with me becoming an interior designer?

In two words: spatial relationships. It’s a thing that has probably always been innate to me. I first started recognizing it waaaaay back in the early 70s. Even as a 7 year old, I was confused by incongruent information on the darn Brady Bunch show. And I continued to hone spatial recognition skills throughout my life.

Seeing the space between space is my jam

Knowing how different elements fit together is an important part of interior design. This knowledge allows designers to visualize spaces before a change is made. I can center a piece of art without measuring it. Will that 96” sofa will fit in that space? My intuition knows (though I always double check with my trusty measuring tape!). I totally see the spatial relationships between objects and negative space, which serves me well when helping a client understand the potential changes we can make to their room.

Peter Reads A Home Decor Mag
Peter was my favorite, maybe because of his good taste in magazines?

Now, could I have done all of that without watching the Bradys and studying their groovy split level tract home? Honestly, I’ll never know, because I grew up in constant spatial training mode. To this day, I look for patterns and symmetry. I observe everything until spaces are satisfactorily organized in my head, and I’m always looking for the spatial relationships between the inside and outside of a home.

And that’s aaaaallllllll Brady Bunch, friends.

If you need help visualizing your space, and perhaps missed out on the key training regimen I enjoyed while watching TV as a youngster, give me a holler. Let’s see if I can share my vision with you.

“That’s the waaaaaaay I became a de-sign-er.” 

(2) Comments
  • Lisa
    | 31 July 2019

    That’s so funny I watched that show all the time and never noticed the discrepancy. I was all about Mike being an architect since my parents were building our home. That spatial intuition is an awesome superpower to have as a designer!

  • Summer Sterling
    | 5 August 2019

    Yes, I always thought Mike’s job seemed super chic and glamorous. And once you see that mismatch between outside and inside, it cannot be unseen! 

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