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Mid-Century Home Furniture
Mid-Century Home Furniture

Video: Mid-Century Home Furniture

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Video: The obsession with mid-century furniture design, explained 2023, February

Teak sideboards on brass feet, mesh-look chairs and geometrically shaped floor lamps - the mid-century modern is a reinterpretation of the living style from the 1950s and 1960s that determines the current design of many living rooms. We'll give you an overview of which design classics should not be missing from this interior - and how you can get that mid-century feeling into your own four walls.

Living trends come and go - not so the mid-century modern. This timeless style of living has it all: with teak, retro colors and many elements in the Bauhaus design of the 50s and 60s, it brings a real vintage feeling and at the same time appears light and lively: with straight lines, geometric and organic shapes and contrasting Mix of materials from brass to velvet. If you think of Art Nouveau and contemporary, objective furniture design, you are quite right - because mid-century modern cannot be clearly defined as a living style - and is playing with the trends of the decades.

Mid-century modern - a statement of timelessness

The origins of the mid-century style of living lie in the middle of the 20th century and follow the Bauhaus credo "form follows function".

Like modern architecture, furniture and living objects became increasingly functional. Whether teak sideboards on brass feet, lounge chairs with a leather-solid wood look or the popular string bookshelves of the 50s - designers like Eames, Le Corbusier, Arne Jacobsen and Vladimir Kagan attracted a lot of attention in the middle of the century with the unusual product design of their furniture. The little playful but striking design of the furniture from the 40s, 50s and 60s has been on the rise again in recent years and is increasingly in demand when it comes to furnishing.

Mix & Match: contrasting materials in the mid-century style

The mid-century style has recently gained a lot of popularity and is being revitalized and reinterpreted as a mid-century. What remains the same with the revival of the living style is the organic-functional design and the play with contrasting materials: Velvet meets solid wood, plastic on leather or veneered wood on vinyl, golden brass or painted aluminum. Rarely are furniture made entirely from a single material - constructions with a different base are the norm. Because playing with contrast is an exciting field of experimentation for the mid-century furniture designers.

Style and lightness: mid-century furniture

A special component of the mid-century modern living style is its lightness: whether sofa, armchair, desk or chest of drawers - the designer furniture does not want to appear massive in any case. That is why even large, box-shaped objects are always on slim, thin furniture feet, be it with a wooden base or legs made of metal, painted aluminum or brass. This creates airiness and transparency even with bulky objects.

Modern classic: the mid-century sideboard

Despite its vintage look, the mid-century sideboard is a timeless design classic. The elongated shape of the chest of drawers with partly open and partly closed, elongated drawers, straight door fronts without striking door knobs or other decor is common. The legs are narrow, either straight or slightly asymmetrical on the outside. The mid-century sideboard is traditionally made of teak, but modern versions made of wood in combination with a white or gray look are now also available.


Despite or perhaps because of its vintage look, the mid-century sideboard is a timeless classic.

Photo: living4media / Andrew Boyd

Design your workplace - with a mid-century desk

In home office times, the mid-century desk is the right model of choice: Because of its look, it promises pure lightness. As with the sideboards in this living style, the designers like to use teak and other solid wood for the table top. The contrast is with delicate, lacquered metal legs in white, black or brass. This creates a modern workplace that you can complete with an Eames design chair and a work lamp in the mid-century style.

Design in everyday life: mid-century armchairs and sofas

A mid-century sofa or armchair is anything but solid or playful. Straight and angular to gently curved shapes mark the modern design. The color palette ranges from neutral all-rounder colors such as anthracite and black to individual notes in pigeon blue, petrol, forest green or mustard yellow. Velvet covers are always welcome. In the mid-century, these models are combined in a modern way with airy sub-constructions made of metal, aluminum or teak frames.

Design classics among mid-century style sofas and armchairs are the Olsen lounge sofa and the Charles Eames lounge chair with ottoman. The latter is a high-priced designer chair with a timeless character and is also a real collector's item. Another eye-catcher in the living room or dining room: the wicker chairs in a mesh look designed by the Italian furniture designer Bertoia.


The Charles Eames Lounge Chair with footstool is a high-priced designer chair with a timeless character and is also a real collector's item.

Photo: living4media / Winfried Heinze

Mid-Century in Detail: Lights, Small Furniture & Co

To bring the mid-century style into your own living room, you don't need to replace the entire sofa immediately: If you want to try out the living style in your own four walls, you can already use a trendy mid-century lamp on your desk or sofa Make a big difference: The Swedish furniture designer Greta Grossmann has provided the blueprint for many imitators with her floor lamp designs. Whether black, yellow or in soft retro yellow - with the geometrically shaped to gently curved lights in mid-century modern you can not go wrong with the furnishings in the living room.

In general, accessories and small pieces of furniture are a popular stylistic device in mid-century modern: they underline the lightness of this living style and set special accents. Strikingly shaped couch tables and side tables on delicate feet also bring the mid-century look to your home.

Anna Engberg

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