Ultimate Guide to Mid-Century Modern Home Design
The mid-century modern home design style emerged in the middle of the 20th century and is one of the most popular design styles in the world.
It was a movement that brought modernity to the masses and even after 70 years, continues to inspire designers to this day. So let’s learn more about this design style and explore mid-century design ideas that you can incorporate into your own home.
Best Mid Century Modern Home Decor!
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What is mid-century modern in interior design?
Mid-century interior design introduced a completely new and radical way of creating living spaces, promoting functional, open, and uncluttered interiors.
But mid-century design is also much more than just a decorating style. It represents breaking free from the oppression of world wars, rejecting stuffy traditions, and embracing new and modern ways of life.
Scandinavian design and American mid-century modern are very similar because they developed at the same time, so the designers heavily influenced each other.
True mid-century modern designs are timeless, which explains why so many pieces that were designed over 70 years ago today are still wildly popular and continue to be manufactured and sold.
The mid-century modern design style is characterized by clean lines, simple shapes, the use of new materials, and organic elements. Because mid-century is very much about functionality, there are little to no embellishments to be found.
Designs were not only meant to be practical and long-lasting, they were also sculptural and beautiful to look at. It was truly the perfect marriage between form and function.
Mid-century modern sofas
Sofas have clean, sleek, straight lines and are often elevated off the ground with tapered legs.
The overall shape is usually pretty rectangular.
Common back styles include tight backs and tufted backs.
You can make this type of sofa a little bit more cozy by using throw pillows to soften.
Mid-century modern chairs
Chairs have many of the same characteristics that we mentioned for the sofas.
But you'll see more of those organic curves introduced.
Mid-century modern tables
Mid-century furniture often has angled legs or tapered peg legs.
Sometimes they have brass caps.
Other times, they have hairpin legs.
Mid-century modern materials
Solid wood is popular, but combinations like wooden marble, wooden glass, glossy plastic, and metal are all common mid-century looks.
If you don't want to invest in larger pieces of furniture, there are some smaller decor items that you can incorporate into your space to get the mid-century modern vibe.
Mid-century modern color palette
Popular mid-century colors include tones like yellow gold, pumpkin orange, mustard, a variety of greens, like apple, olive, and avocado, warm reds, earthy browns, teal, and even some pastels, like light pink and baby blue.
If you're not into the citrusy color pops, then try combining wood mid-century-shaped furniture with colors and materials like leather, brass accents, soft greens, tans, and whites for an earthy mid-century-inspired room.
If you're feeling daring, create a neutral base and integrate the mid-century look into your home through a bright pop of color.
If you want to use a mix of traditional mid-century colors in your room, but still keep things contemporary, another option is to keep to the jewel tones.
Mid-century modern wood
Wood is a common element in mid-century modern design and it often functioned as a backdrop for the bold pops of color.
The use of wood accents in mid-century home decor comes from the Scandinavian influence and their love for natural materials.
While the Scandis kept things a little more rustic and natural, mid-century designs like to combine materials like plastic and wood or metal and wood.
Iconic mid-century design
Now I want to show you a few iconic mid-century design pieces.
I'm sure you're familiar with a ton of these, but I think it's just interesting to see how these pieces were designed 60-70 years ago and they're still so incredibly popular to this day.
Where to buy mid-century furniture
Like always, Amazon has a really good selection of mid-century style pieces.
For the higher-end budget people, I would look at West Elm, Rejuvenation, and Design Within Reach.
For mid-range budgets, I would look at Article, CB2, Wayfair, and AllModern.
For lower budgets, I would recommend IKEA and also Target.
If you want to get actual vintage pieces on a budget then, of course, look at your local thrift stores and go to estate sales and flea markets.
There is still a pretty good selection of mid-century stuff in the secondhand scene, so I would definitely recommend scouring secondhand shops for original pieces.
Mid-century design ideas
If you're looking for some specific ways to bring the mid-century style into your home, here are a few ideas to get you going.
1. Use a bold accent piece
Instead of decking out your whole room, get one piece and make it a focal point in the room.
2. Update your lighting fixtures
Lighting can be a massive statement in a room, so for a big impact, you could try to acquire a mid-century style pendant light or floor lamp and incorporate that into your space.
3. Create a wood accent wall
Wood was very big in mid-century homes, so you could make a mid-tone to dark-tone wood panel wall in one of your rooms.
4. Add a bold graphic piece of art
Whether you make it yourself or buy it is up to you. There are a lot of options out there.
5. Incorporate geometric elements
Mid-century designs are known for their geometric forms, which often repeat themselves into patterns. So you could try incorporating that into some of your decor.
6. Remove your window treatments
Mid-century homes were huge on using big picture windows and glass, allowing a lot of light to spill into the home. So if you have big picture windows, you could try removing your drapes or blinds to let all the light in.
Mid-century modern home design
I really hope you found all of this information on mid-century modern home design useful and interesting. It just goes to show how traditional elements from the past often become classic features over time, being brought back in new and exciting ways by designers.
What do you think about mid-century design? Share your likes and dislikes in the comments section that follows.