Here’s How to Avoid Mid-Century Modern Burnout (So Your Investments Never Look Dated)

updated Oct 12, 2022
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A few weeks ago I wrote a post about the enduring popularity of mid-century modern furniture. It’s a style that’s dominated interior design for many, many years now, and I don’t see it going anywhere anytime soon. The big shift, I think, in the way people approach this style is that instead of filling entire rooms with midcentury furniture, for a kitschy “Mad Men” look, decorators are starting to mix it in with pieces from other eras, for a more eclectic feel.

In a comment on the aforemention article, reader fnasc wanted suggestions for ways to mix mid-century with other styles. We can do that! — I thought. So here, by request, is a trove of inspiration for mixing mid-century modern with all kinds of pieces in all kinds of interiors.

(Image credit: My Scandinavian Home)

From My Scandinavian Home, here’s another interior with mostly traditional pieces, where a touch of mid-century, far from seeming out of place, actually lightens and enlivens the space.

(Image credit: Femina)

This space from Femina is the opposite of the one above — a mostly modern interior with a few traditional pieces. The antique table and china cabinet add texture and warmth to the space, and give it a timeless feel rather than a strictly retro one.

(Image credit: SF Girl by Bay)

A mid-century cabinet and rocker come together with a modern sofa (and that great bird chandelier) in a Parisian interior from SF Girl by Bay.

(Image credit: Nuevo Estilo)

A Noguchi coffee table feels right at home in this interior from Nuevo Estilo. The warm wood of its base is a nice fit for the colors and textures in the rest of the room, and its sculptural quality lends a certain airiness to the space.

(Image credit: Lily)

From Lily comes this space that’s neatly balanced between traditional and modern: modern chairs and coffee table, traditional rug and armoire. Although the armoire and coffee table are from very different eras, the similarity in wood tones gives them a relationship to each other.

(Image credit: Style by Emily Henderson)

A couple of mid-century chairs liven up a living room from Style by Emily Henderson. Look for pieces that balance others — in this case, the lightness of the chairs is the perfect contrast to the solidity of the coffee table and couch.