5 Surprising Things to Know About Mid-Century Furniture

September 19, 2016 Francine Jones 0 Comments

1. What is the mid-century style?

Mid-century modern is an interior, architectural, graphic and product design that describes mid-20th century developments from approximately 1933 to 1965. It is recognized by museums and scholars throughout the world as a significant design movement.

2. Vintage or Reproduction?

Although it is advantageous to locate a fine vintage piece of mid-century furniture with its unique style, it might be easier to find excellent reproduction furniture from a company that has dedicated itself for years to manufacturing eco-friendly custom replicas of sought-after pieces.

3. Can such furniture be customized?

Indeed, if it is a reproduction, you are able to choose your own materials and innovative designs. Top-quality workmanship finishes off the item to meet your specific individual desires. The company’s experienced designers can work with you so you can get the exact furniture piece that you envision and in colors that will match well with your existing décor.

4. Where did the designs come from?

Some say that the Mid Century Modernist or Modern era of design was from 1940 to 1970 with fantastic styles, colors, and images in chairs, couches, tables, and more for dining rooms, bedrooms, and other locations. Examples are taken from movies, television, art, architecture, and designers of the time.

The design is often the carefree look and the casual furnishings of the Eichler tract homes popular in suburban California during the 1950s. It was also the style of mass production of many household objects including furniture, lamps, clocks and more that were made affordable to the average homeowner rather than just to the wealthy elite.

5. Who were the designers?

There were many artists from all over the world who designed the furniture. Børge Mogensen of Scandinavia made his chairs with elegant simplicity that harmonized functionality and form. In the United States, Herman Miller produced plywood, fiberglass, plywood, and wire-mesh chairs. Japanese sculptor Isamu Noguchi, a giant in the style, designed a three-piece glass and wood table in 1948 that has been a mainstay of the Miller catalog for over half a century. Ernest Race produced good-looking sideboards and folding deck chairs that were economical. Harry Bertoia came up with red and white aluminum and fiberglass Tulip chairs.

Of particular note is that Hans Wegner created a chair that was so highly regarded that it was used by Kennedy and Nixon in a 1960 presidential debate and has since become simply known as “The Chair.” When George Nelson wasn’t busy designing furniture, he was making spectacular modern wall clocks for the Howard Miller Clock Co. on a series including clocks in the shapes of sunflowers, sunbursts, a human eye, and one where the hands pointed to balls of various colors placed on slender shaft ends.


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