Midcentury modern design continues to be as popular with today’s homeowners, as at its peak of popularity and introduction during the mid-1940s to the mid-1960s. Despite the economic and emotional toll World War II had taken, people were in good spirits; seeking simplicity, organic style and an ease of living not seen previously. Designers were experimenting with new and contrasting materials, colours, and patterns; and innovative designs were born out of necessity due to tough economic times. Furnishings designed by the likes of Charles Eames, Arne Jacobsen, and Isamu Noguchi are still relevant and highly desirable.
Midcentury modern architecture featured open floor plans with lots of windows, and an easy flow from room to room; a feature which you will see in many homes built today. Windows rarely featured any window coverings in order to blur the lines between the indoors and outdoors, and furnishings and spaces becoming multipurpose. Functionality began to take priority over form, with designers foregoing unnecessary flourishes and excess detailing. It was beautiful in its simplicity, and the designs that came about were simple and therefore timeless. While the following living rooms evoke the look and feel of midcentury modern design, they don’t look like they’ve been kept in a time capsule.
1. Featuring a mix of colours, this open-plan living/dining room echoes midcentury modern design, with its clean lines, undressed windows, and ellipse pendant light.
2. This modern take features loads of grey (today’s neutral), contrasting beautifully with the big pops of colour found in a statement chair, table lamp and other accessories.
3. Bright, contrasting colours…check. Cork and timber ceiling…check. Exposed brick work…check. These home owners have nailed the essence of midcentury modern design. It’s a fun, open-planned space, jam-packed with functionality.
4. Once again, this room contains loads of colour and contrast. The white tulip coffee table contrasts nicely with the teak wall unit and woven armchairs.
5. While this space is heavily neutral, the simple midcentury teak furniture gives it loads of warmth, and is perfect in this minimalist space.
6. The standout feature of this room is the day bed taking centre stage. This is a space designed purely for entertaining and conversation, yet the furnishings are soft and practical enough for every day living…all elements of midcentury modern design.
7. The owners of this home picked up this original 1950’s curved sofa for a mere $10. What a find!! Recovering this beauty in a modern fabric has given it a new lease of life. Mental note…check out your local thrift stores, and furniture resellers from time to time to see what’s available.
It is no coincidence that in light of the current tough economic times, many people have sought to simply their lives, turning to fuss-free midcentury modern designs. This design trend doesn’t look like stopping any time soon.
Are you a fan of midcentury modern design?