Make your mid-century modern home feel more comfortable and inviting with these design tips. You'll turn your house into that dreamy retro home you envisioned.
Tip #1: Give away, recycle, and throw out what you don't need.
Decluttering your living spaces is one of the most important ways to make your mid-century modern home impress onlookers and turn that space into a joy to live in. Beautiful shapes, sleek lines, and neutral tones common in mid-century modern design suit a minimalistic approach perfectly.
Set aside a whole day for this improvement. Look at every piece in your living space and choose what to get rid of. Devote this entire time to simplifying a beautifully functional room.
Work on one type of item at a time for the whole space. Start with books and clear out what books you don't need in this room. Then move on to another item, such as knick-knacks.
You’ll stay motivated and feel as if you’re accomplishing more.
Keep the items that add value and joy to your daily life. Let go of the things that evoke sadness or regrets. Even sentimental items should go if they do not make you feel happy.
- Consider this as you downsize:
- Pick a few statement pieces and build the room around them.
- Choose one or two items to show off in a display area.
- If you display a collection, make it functional as well or let it go.
- Choose high-quality mid-century modern pieces instead of cheap knockoffs.
Tip #2: Feel at home from the first step in the door.
Spruce up that boring entryway or foyer with some mid-century modern love. Here are some ideas to make your space welcoming and heartwarming:
- Add pieces with tapered furniture legs and organic shapes.
- Create balance through symmetry as you put pieces together.
- Add a light fixture to brighten dark entryways.
- Add a taller item to draw the eyes upward for vertically challenged spaces.
- Tie your room design together with vintage-inspired black and white photos.
- Use large pieces featuring dark, rich wood tones to bring out a mid-century modern feel.
- Mix rectangular and squared elements with round pieces for a geometric look.
- Liven up your entryway with greenery for a natural feel.
- Add beauty and functionality with a low-profile bench.
- Mix and match organic and synthetic materials for a stunning entrance.
Tip #3: Work with your wall and floor colors, not against them.
For a cozy, inviting look, play wood accents off neutral textures for a room featuring off-white walls and floors.
Off-white walls make your space clean and bright, setting the stage for a beautiful, neutral mid-century modern look. To add a bit of color to your primarily off-white room, combine pieces with organic textures, warm colors, and sleek curves.
Don't let dark walls scare you.
When done right, darker colored walls can lend sophistication, charisma, and a calming vibe to your home. Here are a few ideas you may wish to consider.
- Make sure you have plenty of light to keep the space warm and inviting.
- Play on textures and shapes with intriguing items.
- Add an elegant rug featuring unusual cubical shapes for an interesting twist.
- Stick with natural materials like wood and stone for relaxed, welcoming energy.
- Add earthy tones for a clean, monochromatic look with classic mid-century modern paint colors.
Tip #4: Be selective about your wall art.
Add contrast and theme with modern style art that works with your furnishings, not against them. Here are two completely different themed rooms, yet both present a comfortable, eye-catching experience.
Tip #5: Bring Nature inside when you can.
Adding elements of shapes from the natural world, greenery, and natural wood accents can break up the monotony of a neutral color scheme. When you bring nature indoors, you help give your home a lived-in feel while maintaining the mid-century modern ambiance.
Houseplants that blend well with a mid-century modern home:
- The Monstera plant is easy to care for and fast-growing. Its beautiful leaves make a great statement piece.
- The Fiddle Leaf Fig is a dramatic and elegant plant that brings structural beauty to a room.
- The Prayer Plant has bold veining in its leaves that add another textural feature to your design.
- The Snake Plant's curvy leaf structure and tall, sleek build add vertical interest to any room.
- The ZZ Plant comes with an unusual look that provides visual contrast.
- The Dragon Tree is tall and dramatic for that extra pop you need in your living space.
Tip #6: Fill the home with food and family.
Minimalist style, interesting curves, and natural elements combine to make this cozy breakfast nook. Mix and match mid-century modern elements to create a space your guests and family enjoy on those beautiful mornings.
Think in terms of patterns and comfort when putting together your mid-century modern kitchen for a luxurious and elegant dining experience.
Tip #7: Set the environment for outdoor relaxation.
Don't sacrifice your mid-century modern style by settling for department store tables and chairs for your patio. Bring tranquility and comfort to your outdoor patio with modern lines and upscale design.
Choose mid-century modern outdoor furniture with quick-drying, water repellent, and UV-resistant components for comfortable seating where you'll love entertaining guests and spending quiet days at home alone.
Consider enhancing the mood with patio lighting solutions. Subtle, elegant mid-century modern outdoor lights will set a cozy atmosphere for relaxing with after-dark drinks.
Tip #8: Set your mood with indoor lighting.
Accentuate your mid-century modern room design with unique light fixtures, interesting chandeliers, and lamps that add timeless appeal. Look for color tones that tie in with the colors of your room design. Use shapes and curves that add to the visual appeal and functionality.
The Snoopy Table Lamp is a playful tribute to the Charles M. Shulz character people love, adding a fun element to the space.
Tip #9: Add warmth to the cozy seating space.
Use your mid-century modern furniture as the foundation and incorporate other elements to make it feel warm and cozy.
Tables, lighting, and curtain rods with warm metallic finishes complement the overall design better than stainless steel or chrome. Alternatively, natural wood tables and legs add to the coziness.
- Choose chairs and sofas with soft leather or tufted patterns.
- Add a rug to soften up the space.
- Mix and match warm metals with wood for visual interest.
- Add artwork with earth tones, such as midnight blue, grey, or mustard yellow.
Tip #10: Claim a neglected space for your special reading nook.
Create an open, airy living space and relax with a good book and your favorite drink at the end of a long day. Mixing neutral tones can present a calming atmosphere to help you unwind.
Tip #11: Harness the power of scent.
Mid-century modern lovers enjoy relaxing by candlelight. Candles made with coconut or soy wax and infused with synthetic fragrances or essential oils are popular with mid-century modern design.
Choose a candle created in a minimalistic modern design votive or a wooden base reminiscent of the tapered mid-century modern table leg designs. With the subtle pop of color and hints of scents that reflect the era, you'll add a lived-in cozy feel to any room with candles.
Tip #12: Toss some throws, blankets, and pillows around.
Finally, mix and match colors and textures throughout your living spaces with throws, blankets, and pillows. Jazz up sofas, armchairs, beds, and window seats with cushions. Layer functional throws throughout to continue your neutral color scheme.
Mid-century modern favors earthy throw pillows with pops of red or olive green. A pastel vibe also evokes the 1950s era. Pile them to suit your taste and mix them up to achieve the authentic look you're going for.
Look for throws that fit with mid-century modern decor through calming colors and textiles that are functionally comfortable to snuggle into. Layer them across your off-white bed for a cozy ambiance, or lay the soft geometric pattern throw across the back of your neutral couch for some visual interest.