Mid-century modern home decor is quickly becoming a popular decorating style. On the heels of successful mid-century television shows like Mad Men, people across the country are opting for a 1960s style interior, or at least a few elements that represent the style! Mid-century modern decor is great for anyone who loves minimalistic design and warm brown hues.
If you’d like to learn more about decorating in the mid-century modern style, then keep reading as this post will give you a basic overview of the mid-century decor core elements!
Mid-Century Modern Design
The most popular and well known elements of mid-century style come from the 1950s and 1960s, when straight lines and smooth curves formed the basis of much mid-century furniture. Mid-century modern design was partially influenced by Bauhaus style – a minimalist rejection of the intricate and ornate decorative elements that were popular during the very early 20th century.
Finding original mid-century modern furniture in good condition can be a challenge, like most period-piece shopping. Luckily, this style is still very much in fashion and you can find affordable furniture and decorative elements in the mid-century modern style, even if they are not authentically vintage.
West Elm is probably the mass retailer most closely associated with contemporary mid-century furniture and decor.
Today I’d like to share some core mid-century modern design elements that you can keep an eye out for when shopping!
Mid-Century Modern Structural Elements
The mid century mod look was characterized by geometric forms, often repeating themselves into patterns.
On the walls, you’ll often find vertical knotty wood paneling in a dark brown finish. Sometimes the paneling is vertical and other times, it’s horizontal!
Jamie Bush Co
Mamie pink tile Bathroom
Perhaps the most whimsical mid-century modern design element is the Mamie pink tile bathroom. “Mamie” is a reference to the former first lady of the United States, Mamie Eisenhower, of course. During the 1950s, Mamie’s love for pink was well publicized. Everything from her pink inauguration dress to her pink Gettysburg home bathroom caught the attention of women across the country. A love for pink bathrooms was thus ignited.
Pops of Color: Oranges, aquas, mustard yellows and reds
Desaturated fall colors seemed to be everywhere in mid-century modern decor. Keep an eye out for pumpkin oranges, mustard yellows, deep reds and even some popping aquas!
Open shelf dividers
Open shelf dividers in various geometric forms are often found in mid-century style homes. These room dividers are practical and help break up large spaces. You can store books, objects, and photo frames in the various small shelves.
Glass walls and Large Glass Windows
Glass walls are a quintessential element of mid-century home structures. These large walls let in a ton of light, and are most often found in rural, remote homes. Obviously, you wouldn’t want your home open for the neighbors to see!
Mid-Century Modern Home Decor
Here are a few common mid-century modern home decorations:
- Starburst Clock / Sunburst Clock
- Pop Art or Abstract Expressionist Art
- Artichoke Pendant Lamp
- Sputnik chandelier
- Circular shag rug
- Geometric Pillows & Rugs
Mid-Century Modern Furniture
There are so many beautiful mid-century modern furniture items, some of which held lasting power and are found in modern day homes, too!
These are the most popular mid-century furniture pieces:
- Dark Brown Wood Furniture
- Two-Tier Coffee Table
- Eames Lounge Chair
- Hairpin legs
- Eames Molded Plastic Armchair
- Noguchi table
- Pastoe wire chair
- Tulip chairs and Tables
- Womb Chair
- Brass bar cart
- Platform Bed
Mid-Century Modern Designers
These are the most famous mid-century modern designers to know:
- Herman Miller
- George Nelson
- Edward Wormley
- Eero Saarinen
- Harry Bertoia
- Arne Jacobsen
- Charles Eames and Ray Eames
- Eileen Gray
- Isamu Noguchi
- Verner Panton
- Jens Risom
- Alexander Girard
- Ludwig Mies van der Rohe
- Marcel Breuer
Mid-Century Modern Decor Inspiration
Graham Yelton and Margaret Pate