Mid-Century Modern design, from the 1940’s through to the early 1970, is hugely popular with collectors and decorators alike and many furniture pieces from that time have become the staple of the modern interior design and decorating.
Mid-Century Modern style was for many years derided as being a variation of the theme of kitsch, but the combination of the architectural minimalism and organic modernism at its heart led to its recent revival. Mid-Century classics are enjoying a rebirth – in fact, many of the most iconic designs have remained in production since they were launched and these continue to inspire the designers of today.
The key distinguishing features of this style are classic, understated look, and clean lines with minimal fuss:
• A renewed emphasis on the home as an integrated whole
• Re-discovery of nature and its integration with interior and exterior design by pioneering 20-th century architects such as Frank Lloyd Wright
• Functionality is important, as form follows function
• Uncluttered and sleek lines and both organic and geometric forms
• Minimal ornamentation
• An exploration of different traditional as well as non-traditional materials.
• Juxtaposition of different and sometimes contrasting materials
• A liberal use of traditional material, such as wood, and non-traditional materials such as metal, glass, vinyl, plywood, Plexiglass and Lucite and plastic
Mid-Century Modern Designers
There are several Mid-century Modern designers of note, and pieces designed by them have continued to inspire designers who came after them. Furniture pieces inspired by their designs, as well as copies are greatly sought after.
Below are some of the best known designers of this period. This is by no means an exhaustive list:
Charles and Ray Eames
Charles Eames and his wife Ray Eames
How to Create Mid-Century Modern Style in Your Home
As with any period, do not feel a compulsion to create a replica of those times. You can, if you feel compelled, but a lot of homeowners just starting out feel intimidated when tackling a style they love. It can also prove to be very expensive to get authentic pieces, even though many are still being made or have been revived due to demand.
Instead try to adapt one or two furniture pieces to create enduring and stylish home décor with Mid-Century influence.