On the Set


These days, it’s rare that a movie has you in a happy-go-lucky mood when you walk out of the movie theater. (And, if you’re like me, you’ll end up Googling for behind-the-scenes and making-of info as soon as you get home.) Saving Mr. Banks was that kind of movie for me. I laughed. I cried. I sang along. I “aww”ed and “oh no”ed. Simply put… it easily earned a spot in my list of favorite movies.

As I’ve probably mentioned several times, I come from a family of Disney lovers. Really, I can’t accurately put into words how my family feels about Disney. Since before I was born, my family went to Disney World for vacation at least once a year, and to this day, it’s still my favorite place to go on vacation. It just never gets old. Not only do I feel completely and utterly relaxed when we’re there, I also love the “Disney way” of doing things. Everything is done so well – right down to the slightest detail. Being a details person, I just love it.

That being said, it’s no surprise that I adored this movie so much. It really wasn’t at all what I expected (in a good way), and it’s still a film any Disney fan would love and appreciate.

On the Set: Saving Mr. Banks / 7thhouseontheleft.com

I’ve always been drawn to mid century modern furniture – maybe because I think I should have lived during I Love Lucy days – but the set of Saving Mr. Banks made me fall in love with it even more. The set designer (Susan Benjamin) was out of this world kinds of good and pegged the “Disney-inspired mid century vibe” perfectly.

On the Set: Saving Mr. Banks / 7thhouseontheleft.com

The still above makes me laugh because you can see Dolly in the background happily getting ready to serve a huge tray of sweets to the writing team. If you’ve seen the movie, you know what happens next, haha. Also, I totally wish desk chairs like those were still easy to find. I want one!

On the Set: Saving Mr. Banks / 7thhouseontheleft.com

The scenes in Walt’s office are some of my favorites because of all of the memorabilia and hidden Easter eggs here and there (like the seven miniature Oscars for Snow White’s dwarves, blueprints for Disney World in Orlando laying around and the framed Mary Blair artwork).

On the Set: Saving Mr. Banks / 7thhouseontheleft.com

And you can’t have a movie about the making of Mary Poppins without the Sherman Brothers. Through the years, they wrote the music for films such as The Parent Trap (another favorite of mine), The Jungle Book, Winnie the Pooh, and Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. Richard Sherman served as a consultant for the film and has some great stories to tell about working with Walt Disney that are featured on the DVD extras.

On the Set: Saving Mr Banks // 7thhouseontheleft.com

 Fruit Basket (hold the pears) / Wood + Burlap Slat Pendant
Vintage Mary Poppins Poster / Taylor Love Seat (in Kelin Sunny)
Record Player / Walnut Table Lamp / Cole Chair
Steinway Upright Piano / Vintage TV
Kettle Desk Phone / Mary Blair Artwork

Now it’s your turn, what’s your favorite TV or movie set? Ever wish you lived in a different era? All movie stills from here.

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  • Reply
    April 24, 2014 at 12:09 am

    There is no way to say this without sounding creepy: you are a kindred spirit and we would be best friends if I knew you in real life 😉

    I adore this post – thank you!

    • Reply
      April 24, 2014 at 10:48 am


  • Reply
    April 24, 2014 at 5:21 am

    This movie had the exact same effect on me…it gave me a dose of happy for at least 24 hours.

  • Reply
    Sally G.
    April 24, 2014 at 7:19 am

    I would be right at home in the late 50s-early 60s.

    Also, I’m drooling over that piano! Steinway truly makes the best. I have a really od (circa 1880) cabinet grand, but it’s still at my parent’s house in Iowa, since I didn’t have room for it in my first DC studio apt. Now that we have a house I have to get it out here… but it’s going to be hard it’s solid wood and it weighs a ton!

    • Reply
      April 24, 2014 at 10:47 am

      Me too! Steinways are the best. I saw a documentary a few months ago on how they are made and it was fascinating!

  • Reply
    Lori H
    April 24, 2014 at 8:03 am

    We just saw Saving Mr Banks this past weekend and loved it! I absolutely love when you do these On the Set posts, because I have to admit that I rarely notice or remember the sets of movies and shows. After reading your posts I find that I pay more attention to that kind of thing, but am still bad about remembering any of them. In my defense, I could describe most of the “sets” of my favorite books – I guess reading something sticks with me better than watching it. 🙂

  • Reply
    [email protected]
    April 24, 2014 at 10:13 am

    I LOVED LOVED LOVED this movie. Everything about it. Totally snubbed all around at the Oscars if you ask me!! Emma Thompson was genius! I think I need that Mary Poppins poster!

    • Reply
      April 24, 2014 at 10:49 am

      Agreed! I think it was nominated for something like Best Score or Costumes and that was it : (

  • Reply
    April 24, 2014 at 11:37 am

    I have to say, as a major Disney fan all my life this movie really disappointed me! I thought that the indoor sets were well done for all the hidden Easter eggs (like you mentioned), however a lot of the outdoor sets were weird to me. There was that one recurring scene where Emma Thompson was being driven in the car and they would talk about something outside the window and they never showed us! It’s drove me nuts!

    Also, I watched this movie right after watching American Hustle, and the sets and costumes blew me away in that movie and I just thought the attention to detail in American Hustle was done better than in Saving Mr. Banks.

    I do like these posts though! You do a great job of finding items for bringing the look home 🙂

    • Reply
      April 24, 2014 at 12:45 pm

      Thanks! I never noticed that in the car scenes, haha! I heard that it was filmed at the offices at Disney Studios in LA – where the story actually took place, so I thought that was kind of neat.

  • Reply
    April 24, 2014 at 12:43 pm

    I’m a new follower, hi! I haven’t seen this movie yet, but now I want to even more! I adore mid century furniture.

  • Reply
    Chelsea Price
    April 24, 2014 at 3:00 pm

    This post was spot on for me, everything from the Disney easter eggs to the I Love Lucy obsession! I always thought I should have been a young woman in the 1950s, because I adore everything about that show – Lucy’s cigarette pants + ballet flats, the polka dots and headscarves, the cigarette holders…and also Ricky 😉 The costuming and set design in Saving Mr. Banks was perfect, as was the acting! Great post! 🙂

  • Reply
    April 24, 2014 at 9:51 pm

    We are huge fans here of the movie Christmas Vacation, and the older I get, the more I drool over the sets used in that movie… Everything from the contrast piping sheets on their bed to the gorgeous transferware soup tureen in the dining room… It’s all perfect. The sconces, the woodwork, the cozy plaid curtains… I love it. Great representation of upwardly mobile suburbia in the late 1980’s.

  • Reply
    April 24, 2014 at 10:00 pm

    Loved this movie as well! love your blog!

  • Reply
    April 25, 2014 at 3:52 pm

    This room is ADORABLE!!!! Love!

  • Reply
    April 25, 2014 at 8:39 pm

    I haven’t seen this movie yet, but Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago currently has a Walt Disney exhibit that’s pretty interesting. Lots of great memorabilia and sketches. There’s a re-creation of his office too, which was neat. Check it out if you’re in the area any time soon!
    As far as movie sets I love, basically anything by Nancy Meyers…she has amazing set decorations, stunning no matter what the style. In The Holiday for example I could be comfortable in either the English cottage or the California mansion!
    Nora Ephron also had a beautiful esthetic for her sets, You’ve Got Mail, for example.

  • Reply
    April 27, 2014 at 12:42 am

    When you were in LA last were you able to see the Disney exhibit at the Reagan Library? We made it up there and it was really great. They had an exact replica of Walt’s office + tons of memorabilia from the park and Disney’s early sketches and animation. Very cool!

    • Reply
      April 27, 2014 at 9:32 am

      Nooooo, I so wish we had! It’s definitely on our list for next time.

  • Reply
    Carrie Keeley
    May 5, 2014 at 7:55 am

    You wanted the furnishings and I wanted every shoe and handbag Emma wore. I even sent my mother on a search for her sweater chain!

  • Reply
    May 10, 2014 at 9:32 pm

    You wouldn’t happen to know where I could see photo of the interior of Travers’ London townhome, would you? It is simply stunning!

    • Reply
      May 12, 2014 at 10:17 am

      No, I don’t : ( It was very beautiful in the film though.
      If anyone has any links for Debbie, be sure to share them!

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