Easier Living

“A new style of party-giving is beginning to grow up, even while the etiquette books cling to the same number of forks on the table and put into the hostess’s mouth the insincere words with which she begs her guests not to lift a finger. We are making a new etiquette, with a new set of manners for both hosts and guests. They are better manners, more truly gracious, because they are sincere, not a counterfeit of a vanished aristocracy but an honest product of our times. What they demand, more than anything else, is a new and more relaxed attitude on the part of all concerned.”

Mary and Russel Wright’s Guide To Easier Living features some classy mid century modern houses and sensible new ways to get things done. Originally published in 1950, much of the advice about the future of home life has become standard for every American. Serving food ‘family style’ instead of with vestigial plates and dishes for each person; building storage into furniture or even walls, Japanese style. The book suggests clean and open spaces, instead of cluttering life with grandmother’s table, china hutch and lowboy. The back section features huge charts about the resiliency of various materials under stressful conditions. If you need to know what kind of scrubable wall paper is best used in the kitchen, this is the book for you.

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