Open any interior design magazine (or website), and you will notice that much of the trending interior design concepts of homes and furniture resemble the mid-century modern aesthetics. Styles in interior design, as much as in fashion, are cyclical, so the best ones are enthusiastically endorsed to come back. However, the return of the old trend usually has a new twist to it. That said, mid-century modern design is making a remarkable comeback nowadays, and it’s for a good reason. The designs` natural lines and pure forms are all about organic style and ease of living, attributes we all want to embrace in our hectic lives. So with that in mind, in this piece, we will look at the basics of this interior design style and show you how to incorporate mid-century furniture into your home.
Mid-Century Modern: The Basics
“Mid-century modern” broadly describes the architecture, furniture, and graphic design from the middle of the 20th century from about 1933 to 1965. It entails decor with clean lines and minimal fuss, where the forms are organic and geometric. Natural materials like wood, metal, and leather are dominant. Bold patterns are encouraged to bring visual focus to lean, uncomplicated rooms. Above all, functionality is paramount. The idea that every room has a purpose, and anything unnecessary should be omitted is dominant. Multipurpose furniture (stacked, folded, or nested pieces) is popular because it conserved space.
Interestingly, mid-century modern use materials in unexpected ways. In that period, plexiglass and fiberglass were welcomed into home furnishings. Plexiglass was used to make precise organic shapes in the form of coffee and end tables. In contrast, tubular steel and leather strapping were used to create comfortable cantilevered chairs.
The Living Room
The living room makes for ample space to include pieces that hold straight lines, soft curves, and an overall minimalistic touch. Now, if you want to create a mid-century modern living room, let us show you a few ideas for achieving it.
Combine a Mid-century Sofa with a Coffee Table
The mid-century sofa style is very different from today’s one, so if you want to incorporate the mid-century vibe in your living room, then adding a sofa is a great way. Characterized by clean lines and geometric shapes, there is nothing overly cushy or decorative about the mid-century sofa. This piece of furniture usually reflects the stark minimalism of modern art. It is typically low and rectangular and designed with opposing textures. The sofa’s material will depend on your preferences, ranging from leather to velvet, while the body can be from metal or wood.
Now, if there’s one item of living room furniture that is typical mid-century, it is the coffee table. This central living room can be a fabulous addition to the sofa, representing more than just a convenient spot to drink and socialize. It can also serve as an exceptional focal point, mostly if its design is influenced by the mid-century aesthetic of the coffee tables with hairpin legs. These furniture items have gentle curves and are elegant and minimalistic.
Add Accent Chairs Joined by a Bar
Lounge mid-century accent chairs can be an elegant addition to every living room. The inspiration for this type of chair comes from the Eames lounge chair, which was one of the most luxurious and famous pieces during the climax of mid-century design. This original furniture item was made of molded plywood and leather. So, if you want to recreate the luxurious feeling from the era, choose lounge chairs from leather with wood recliners and combine them with a built-in or a wheeled bar cart. Believe us, this setting will anchor your space and will bring back the 50’s in your living room. Importantly, fill your bar with expensive liquors, a cocktail shaker, and vintage glasses.
Large Statement Art
To complete a mid-century modern look in your living room, display large statement art pieces. Whether you decide on adding a large sculpture, a vast painting, or a minimalist or graphic gallery wall, art can conclude the mid-century modern feeling you desire. Not to mention, large and bold artwork can immediately catch every visitor’s eye.
The Dining Room
The dining room by nature is a space with two main purposes- eating and entertaining. Due to its simplicity, according to interior designers, the easiest way to change it is by swapping off your furniture. To make it mid-century modern, choose the dining table and chairs in this style as a focal point of the room. Yet, if you want to give this room a bit more personality, do not be afraid to use fun colors and exciting accessories like wallpaper with graphic or floral patterns, handmade ceramics, or decorative glass table plates, ashtrays and mini sculptures.
If you want to bring the mid-century movement in your kitchen, make sure your kitchen feels modern and futuristic. To achieve this momentum, opt for natural color furniture with clean lines. By any means, avoid ornate kitchen cabinets. Combine plain, flat wood ones with marble or steel countertop surfaces. Use sleek stainless steel for the kitchen appliances and make sure your kitchen is (most of the time) uncluttered. If you want a modern kitchen, lighting is really important too.
To give your bedroom the desired style makeover, use natural wood furniture with simple lines. Sometimes all it takes is one great piece of mid-century modern furniture to give your bedroom the right breeze. So, add a mid-century modern nightstand or dresser. Opt for a muted color palette. When it comes to the walls, you can choose to make an accent wall with geometric patterns or have wood-paneled walls and stone for a rustic touch.
Achieve a Mid-century Modern Look with Contemporary Twist
When incorporating mid-century modern decor into your own home, you need to strategize and pay attention to the style’s essential standards. However, in doing so, you should not limit your creativity. This design style offers you the flexibility to attach some uniqueness and trendy twists to it. Here are a few ideas on how to can achieve that:
The mid-century design may have focused on minimalism, but that does not mean you are banned from adding a high-glam decor of traditional Victorian touches. For example, consider adding velvet pillows for an authentic vintage feel or a shiny accent chandelier.
Also, go fearless when playing with colors. While the traditional mid-century palette is still incredibly common and widely used, today, the color options have also expanded in every shade of the rainbow. By using exciting color combinations, you can make a mid-century room feel more contemporary.
Consider warming up your living or dining room with an antique rug or vintage framed prints. This mix can give the living room a lived-in quality that still feels very contemporary.
Since the modern mid-century is all about organic and natural living spaces, feel free to sneak nature into your human-made dwellings. Beyond their aesthetic value, having plants in your living space also has significant health benefits- reduces toxins in the air, and improves air quality.