What Is Midcentury Modern?

A Midcentury Modern styled interior design

Midcentury modern is a design style that emerged in the mid-20th century. Spanning from the 1930s to the 1960s, the midcentury modern style was all the rage. It is characterized by a unique blend of functional simplicity, clean lines, organic forms, and innovative materials, all of which became iconic in the design world. Midcentury modern design encompasses various aspects of architecture, interior design, furniture, and even graphic design. It's considered a reflection of the post-World War II era's optimism, technological progress, and changing lifestyles.

Key Characteristics of Mid Century Design:

Clean Lines

Midcentury modern design places a strong emphasis on uncluttered and clean sleek lines. Furniture and architectural elements often have sleek and minimalistic profiles.

Organic Forms

This design style integrates organic and natural shapes into its creations. Curved lines and smooth, flowing forms are common in both furniture and architecture.


Midcentury modern designers believed that form should follow function. Furniture pieces are designed with practicality and usability in mind, while still maintaining an aesthetic appeal.

Innovative Materials

The midcentury era saw the introduction of new materials like molded plastic, plywood, and fiberglass. Designers utilized these materials to create innovative furniture and structures.

Open Spaces

The style embraces open floor plans and the concept of bringing the outdoors in. Large windows and sliding glass doors allow for a seamless connection between indoor and outdoor spaces.

Bold Colors

Midcentury modern interiors often feature a bold and vibrant color palette, including shades like teal, mustard yellow, and orange. These colors add a sense of energy and playfulness to the space.

Iconic Furniture

The era produced some of the most iconic furniture pieces in design history. Eames Lounge Chair and Ottoman, Saarinen Tulip Table, and the Noguchi Coffee Table are just a few examples.

Minimal Ornamentation

Midcentury modern design avoids excessive ornamentation and decorative detailing. Instead, it focuses on the inherent beauty of materials and forms.

Integration of Nature

Designers aimed to create a harmonious relationship between the built environment and nature. Natural materials, such as wood and stone, are often used, and indoor plants are incorporated to blur the line between indoors and outdoors.

Eames and Bauhaus Influence

The design principles of the Bauhaus movement, characterized by simplicity and functionality, heavily influenced midcentury modern design. Influential designers like Charles and Ray Eames contributed to the popularization of this style.

Midcentury Architecture

Mid century architecture designs from this period often feature flat planes, large glass floor to ceiling windows, and open layouts. The goal was to create homes that were functional, aesthetically pleasing, and in harmony with their surroundings.

Midcentury Modern Furniture

Mid century modern furniture includes pieces such as:

  • Coffee tables
  • Table lamps
  • Sofas
  • Armchairs
  • Lounge chairs
  • Dining chairs

These pieces are typically made from materials like wood, metal, and plastic. They often feature clean lines and a minimalist aesthetic.

How To Bring A Midcentury Modern Style To Your Interior Design

If you’re looking to add a touch of mid century modern style to your home, start with the basics. Choose furniture pieces that have clean lines and minimal ornamentation. Incorporate natural materials like wood or stone into your design for a timeless look.

Introduce vibrant colors through accessories such as pillows, rugs, and lamps. Finally, embrace open floor plans and bring the outdoors in by using large windows and sliding glass doors.

How Bryar Wolf Can Help

multi-colored midcentury-modern-pillows

The Midcentury Modern Collection is a great way to add flair to any home. Offering an array of vibrant colors, bold patterns, and unique textures, Bryar Wolf’s midcentury modern pieces are perfect for achieving the look and feel of a midcentury style.

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