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Mad for Mid Century Modern Decor! Ideas for Your Home

Take a look around any home furnishing store today, and you'll see one trend consistently- mid century! So why has this look been so popular, from the 1940s up until today? Today we'll look at what makes this style great, followed by an in-depth guide on how to incorporate it into your home. From the art on your walls to your kitchen and living room, there's a way to balance this eclectic look to turn your home into a work of art...

Mid Century Modern Style

What are the elements of this look that make it such a success? The television series Mad Men brought this look back in a big way. The long-running popularity of the show points to something millions of people love about its style. The simple, lean lines of graphic design, advertisements, and artwork from the '40s to the '70s still work today. Their shape is so basic that it never feels out of place, even next to the most modern creations of the 2000s. Vibrant, quirky colors add to its charm. When you decorate in this style, a world of unusual color palettes opens up to you. Love bright orange or pale lime? You've chosen the right design century!

If your living room or kitchen could use a fresh facelift, read on for the designer tips I use in my everyday life. Learn how to spruce up your walls with some quirky art and coordinate it with your existing decor in a well balanced way. Your kitchen and living room are transformed into mid century masterpieces with the following style guides:

Wall Art

Not sure what to do with the bare white walls of your home? Explore the world of vintage artwork to give your style a fresh direction. In this article I've broken down the overwhelming range of art genres from this time period into three distinct styles. Which style of mid century modern wall art suits you best? Read this article to find out.

Of course, I had to feature the classic abstract art popular in the 1940s to 1960s. For drama queens and sensitive artists alike, large prints of abstract expressionist paintings have wide appeal. They provide a large, colorful focal point in your spare modern interior. What mid century modern decor would be complete without colorful abstract artwork? It's the epitome of this era's aesthetic.

In keeping with the eclectic nature of this style, I've also included a section on how to frame and display a collection featuring many different art styles. Making such a disparate set of images work together is all in the details of how you group and display them. I also feature a section on graphic wallpaper. It was everywhere in the mid '50s, but how can you make it work in a modern bedroom?


Browse this quirky kitchen article for ideas on how to use mid century home decor to create a space you'll feel inspired to cook in. This style is utilitarian and playful at the same time, which are exactly the qualities you want in a kitchen. If you enjoy trying new recipes or just socializing in this room of your home, it helps to have a cheerful color palette and an uncluttered counter space that's both useful and calming to look at.

If you express yourself through cooking, your kitchen is like your blank canvas. Add a splash of color to inspire your next culinary creation. Try spicy orange chairs or a lemon yellow backsplash. Keep the rest of your kitchen decor simple, and you can afford to be bold and fearless with colorful furniture and light fixtures.

I'll also show you how to balance the look of dark stained woods which were popular during that time with cool accents such as silver and glass. With the right dose of sunshine and some oversized pendant lights, dark wood can look elegant in your kitchen without making it feel closed-in.

Living Rooms

Want to turn your living room into a room that's really designed for living? Get six unique design inspirations in this guide to retro living rooms. The mid century decorating ideas in this article will help you get more use out of your family room, and turn it into a space your whole family will want to spend more time in.

From funky wallpaper to vibrant area rugs and sofas, there's something for everyone in these virtual rooms. I styled them in a relaxed and playful way which allows you to take your favorite elements and mix and match them to create the living space of your dreams.

This article is packed with unique seating area ideas. It showcases many sofas and armchairs which are affordable reproduction versions of famous furniture designs. Wooden legs are a hallmark of this look, and are a great chance to break out the bold upholstery fabric and add a pop of color to your living space. Or, go for a simple and timeless leather upholstered sofa paired with a collection of teak tables. It's a living room look that never goes out of style.

I often draw inspiration from this era's style when I need a design solution in one of my client's homes. It's fun, practical, and works for just about everyone's design aesthetic. From mod to modern, there's a way to make it work for you. Which of these retro looks will you be trying in your next home overhaul?