Midcentury modern decor appeared on the design scene in the mid-20th century with a playful and functional aesthetic. Simple designs and a rejection of heavy ornamentation mark a major change from the past as lifestyles became more casual. At once modern and nostalgic, it’s no wonder this style continues to be a popular choice for homes and offices alike!
If you love the idea of bold colors, teak wood, vinyl, and brass, then you’ll want to keep reading to explore our favorite midcentury modern decor ideas for your home and office!
Midcentury Modern Decor Ideas: Furniture
- Secondhand furniture: When sourcing secondhand midcentury furniture, look for pieces with simple designs and strong curves made from teak wood, wicker, and glass. Fabric can have bold colors (think burnt orange, mustard yellow, lime green, and pastel pink and blue) and patterns; vinyl and leather coverings are appropriate as well.
- New furniture: When sourcing new midcentury furniture, try local shops first. Many independent furniture makers follow this design language and create beautiful pieces.
- Refinishing or reupholstering: If you have office furniture that could work, consider refinishing or reupholstering it! Sometimes painting wood furniture makes all the difference in refreshing your pieces and saving you money. You can also consider vinyl wraps for furniture if you don’t want to sand, paint, or refinish an item.
Midcentury Modern Decor Ideas: Artwork
- Free artwork: First, check out our handy guide on finding free downloadable art. Be sure to visit the Library of Congress and browse their free collection of colorful vintage posters (and if you find one you like, read more about buying poster frames). Look for retro images (animals and abstracts are especially appropriate in midcentury homes), bold patterns, graphic art, or geometric designs. If you’re feeling creative, you could always try your hand at making your own midcentury DIY artwork. If you already have art that’s looking a little tired, try swapping out the frame and matboard with new ones for an instant art refresh.
- New artwork: Buying new art prints? Make sure to browse our guide on where to buy art online. You’ll definitely want to visit Etsy and Society 6, which both have tons of options for your midcentury office.
- Selecting frames: We have a couple of wonderful frames that look perfect with this style. Our Hanover frame has a thin, rounded metal frame, which perfectly echoes the curves and clean lines associated with midcentury modern design. Our Ashford frame also works well with its straight lines and a modern build, it’ll blend nicely with other modern decor. Consider adding one of our matboards in a midcentury color like Buttercup, Tangerine, Pistachio, or Aqua Blue. Looking for more guidance on frame styles? Check out our guide to choosing the right frame for your office style.
- Ordering frames: If you have a digital image, upload your photo to our interactive custom frame builder, select your frame and mat style, and we’ll print, frame, and ship you a ready-to-hang picture!
Midcentury Modern Decor Ideas: Accessories
- Plants: We’re big fans of plants! Not only do they boost your mood, but they look great doing it! We recommend snake plants or a Fiddle-Leaf Fig tree. Snake plants are extremely easy to care for and don’t need daily watering or maintenance. Fiddle-Leaf Figs need a bit more sunlight and care, but grow and fill out quickly.
- Desk accessories: Swap out your plastic paper trays for some vintage metal trays. Add a ceramic pen cup in a funky color and a chrome bowl for push pins and paper clips. If you’d like to create a tabletop frame display on your desk using framed photos, consider our EaselMate accessory. Feel free to incorporate a potted plant or two if you have the space!
- Lighting: Good lighting is essential for any space. We recommend a pairing retro table lamp for your desk/end table, and a modern chrome floor lamp for background lighting. Mixing and matching modern and vintage elements adds a designer touch to a room, and lighting is an easy way to achieve this.
- Decorative accessories: It’s always a good idea to sprinkle a few decorative accessories around your space to pull a design together. Try adding brass candlesticks to your bookshelf decor with one or two pieces of vintage pottery.
- Rugs: Add a focal point and bring some warmth to your design with a midcentury rug. Look for a neutral base (cream, gray, or tan) with overlayed geometric designs in an accent color that matches other colors found in your office.
Midcentury Modern Decor Ideas: Final thoughts
With bold colors and patterns, playful design, and modern expression, it’s no wonder midcentury modern decor is so popular! Whether you love brass, vinyl, or retro nostalgia, it’s easy to add a few key pieces to transform your office into a midcentury modern masterpiece! Once you’ve finished designing your home and office, why not consider a cottagecore kitchen or conference room makeover?
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This post first appeared as Beautiful Midcentury Modern Decor Ideas For Your Home & Office on Frame It Easy - Learning Center for Custom Picture Framing.