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Mid-Century Modern: Thriving Today!

Mid-Century Modern: Thriving Today!

It seems everywhere you look, in print and on TV, Mid Century Modern furniture is thriving today! It is understandable that in todays chaotic world, we are looking for sleeker lines and functional furniture to streamline our homes and offices..But why has this design style remained popular for so long, and is so much in demand that it is being manufactured today more widely than ever?

What is Mid-Century Modern?

Mid-Century Modern, MCM for short, originated in the middle of the 20th century. As with all design styles, it reflected the needs of everyone at the time. Following World War II homes were being built all over America to house returning soldiers and their families. There was also a kind of a rebellion against ornate traditions. Furniture needed to be simple and with clean lines, and capable of being mass produced. Most of all, it needed to be of high quality and affordable.

Mid-Century Modern: Thriving Today!

The craftsmanship is about more than good looks. Mid-century modern pieces represent "the last great period of solid quality construction," says Douglas Meyers, owner of Modern Mobler, a vintage seller in D.C. and Maryland. The big-box stores of that era, such as Sears Roebuck, sold furniture that was both affordable and built to last. Comparatively, when you buy something at today's less expensive chains - say, Ikea or Wayfair - you rarely expect it to survive more than a few years. If you are lucky enough to own original Mid-Century Modern, you have real value in your pieces and it only going higher.

Mid-Century Modern: Thriving Today!

MCM was mostly crafted from teak, rosewood and oak and boasted metal, glass and vinyl. Color was very important during that time. Popular midcentury colors were red, sage and lime green, yellow gold, pink, and turquoise. It is dominated with oval and round shapes and patterns, reflected everywhere in coffee table, lamps and accessories.

Never before were so many top designers mass-producing their work for average households. "It was just a unique period," says Oscar Fitzgerald, author of "American Furniture Designers: 1900-2020." What resulted, he says, was "absolutely beautiful."

There are certain pieces of MCM that are quite famous due to the popularility of their designers. The top were Charles and Ray Eames, Harry Bertonia, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe

Marcel Breuer, Arne Jacobsen and Paul Evans. No doubt you have seen, sat on or owned one of their pieces in your lifetime.

Please click on photo to see full frame.

Mid-Century Modern: Thriving Today!

One reason for the popularity of MCM is the hit TV series Mad Men, although the aclaim had already taken hold by then. Interesting how all of the famous MCM designers could have been characters of the show. Due to the popularity and availability of the designs, they have shown up in many places including The 1999 Destiny's Child music video for "Say My Name," which serves up a mid-century buffet. Prop managers have hoarded Mid-Century Modern since its concept and the designs have continued to be seen on TV and the stage.

We are looking for clean lines and much of MCM design styles fit perectly in today's lifestyle. Here are a few examples:

Please click on photo to see full frame.


So it appears that the designers of this era who chose to create unique designs rather than modify traditional styles, along with mass producing these designs are the primary reason for their popularity. Design trends usually run in 30 year increments. For a while since the MCM time frame we had a need for more tradition, but today it is a new ballgame and Mid-Century Modern fits the bill. So lets give these designers a big hand for for their vision. Like I said before, if you are fortunate enough to own an original, you have a valuable piece ... and it's only going to be worth more in the future!

For more inspiration, ... check out my Pinterest Board: Mic-Century Modern! I have pinned hundreds of ideas for you. The photos above are all from Bing Images. for what's pictured above. Click here!


Lakewood 400 Antiques Market is the decorator's happy place to search Mid-Century Modern, and for great treasure, furniture and accessories, and everything from fresh produce to handmade jewelry and fashions. You absolutely never know what you may find there!

It is a glorious treasure hunt sure to delight.

For more information Click Here! 

Please Note: Beginning January 2024, Lakewood 400 Antiques Market will be open on the 1st weekend of every month, and no longer on the 3rd. Go to the website and you can add the upcoming dates to your Google calendar. For a reminder every month, sign up for their newsletter.


Jan Jones is a Designer, Artist, and Author of

"Finding Me: A Motivational Journey of Discovery for Young People."

For more information Click Here  

For the website and jjd magazine where you can read many articles by jan.

We welcome your comments and enjoy sharing ideas!

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