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Why Mid-Century Modern Homes Are Still So Popular

Oct 27, 2020

Almost 100 years ago, the world of residential architecture changed forever with the introduction of mid-century modern homes.

They didn’t look anything like their predecessors, which is exactly why the style became so popular practically overnight. For many people, it’s still the ideal option.

So, if you’re in the market for a new home, it’s worth learning why so many people love mid-century modern homes.

What Exactly Is a Mid-Century Modern Home?

Mid-century modern homes grew in popularity during the 1930's and maintained it all the way through the 1960's. This style of architecture broke away from more traditional designs, borrowing heavily from the inspired work of Frank Lloyd Wright.

Though its popularity dropped after the 60's, it’s still an extremely prevalent form of architecture throughout the country. Here are the four aspects that define this type of home.

1. Flat Panes

Mid-century modern design prioritizes flat planes. This emphasis on geometry can be seen throughout these homes, from the layout of each room to their roofs. Although ranch-style mid-century modern houses typically keep their gable roofs, the insides feature more straight lines than traditional ranch homes would.

Mid-century modern interior design doesn’t always follow suit, though. Designers often use plenty of curves in their furniture choices inside of geometric rooms, creating “modern” looks reminiscent of the 50's and 60's.

2. Large Windows

One of the most distinguishing characteristics of mid-century modern homes are large glass windows. In fact, it’s not uncommon for the back of these homes to be almost completely without walls – just large floor-to-ceiling windows instead. Some seem to be almost completely made of glass with even the front of the house letting in plenty of light.

This is probably the best example of the functional aspects of mid-century modern homes. Not only do these large windows look great, but they also let in lots of natural light. From a design perspective, they blur the line between the house and its natural surroundings, which is great for homes that are tucked away off the beaten path.

3. Changes in Elevation

Similar to a split-level house, mid-century modern homes usually feature multiple floors, but each is separated into different elevations, often by just a step or two.

The effect may also be heightened by the inclusion of partial walls that create spaces of varying depths or even cabinets of different heights.

4. Integration with Nature

As we touched on a moment ago, mid-century modern homes tend to offer multiple views of the outdoors. This usually means large windows, but multiple access points can play a role, as well, making it easy for the inhabitants to step outside. Courtyards are fairly common, too.

4 Reasons People Love Mid-Century Modern Homes

Though they are reminiscent of a style that had its heyday during the first half of the last century, mid-century modern homes remain popular. People aren’t just buying the original versions, either. Plenty of residential architects stay busy by designing brand-new mid-century modern houses for people who absolutely love this look.

Here are the four most common reasons these homes will be around for another century.

1. Vintage Style

One reason for the popularity of these homes is that Millennials love vintage design and style. This category has proven to be a great combination of chic and functional.

So, it’s not surprising that when Millennials decide to buy houses, many of them love the idea of owning a home that has an authentically vintage feel to it.

At the same time, mid-century modern houses still give them plenty of room for creative design choices. They aren’t as boxed in by the architecture of their home. Whereas other forms of architecture demand a fairly specific type of interior design, mid-century modern can accommodate numerous options. Owners can strictly adhere to the vintage look, choose something more modern, or include aspects from a range of other styles.

2. Small Spaces Get Lots of Character

Another great thing about mid-century modern homes is that their changing elevations create lots of fun little spaces throughout the home. One room may actually feel like it includes two or more because of a step up or down or a partial wall that creates a new space.

The wide range of furniture that works for mid-century modern designs also gives you a lot of options for creating the feel of multiple rooms in one.

In any case, these homes are big on character, even when it comes to the smallest spaces. So, you don’t need to come up with a massive budget to buy an equally massive home in order to enjoy the feel of a large house. Walking through a mid-century modern house can take you from one style to a completely different one, even where the smallest spaces are concerned.

3. Practical Décor

Again, midcentury-modern decor leaves a lot of room for interpretation. No, you don’t have to buy authentic furniture from the era. You don’t even need to buy furniture that takes its style from that era. Contemporary touches are a great way to provide a bit of contrast and ensure your living room doesn’t look too much like the set of Mad Men.

However, one thing that this type of décor does tend to have in common is practicality. It should be durable, affordable, and comfortable. Of course, it also looks great, too, which is one more reason homeowners continue to love mid-century modern designs.

4. Lots of Freedom

Finally, despite the fact that this style originated from a defined period in architectural history, you have plenty of freedom when it comes to the look of your house and what you decide to do with your interior. As we just covered, you don’t need to spend a fortune on collecting authentic items to fill your home.

You also have plenty of room to create your own style, one that fits your unique tastes. This is usually much more of a risk if you decide to buy, say, a minimalist house or one built in the Spanish missionary style. Taking too many liberties with your décor in those kinds of houses could create a jarring contrast.

Take the First Step Toward Finding Your Mid-Century Modern Home

Are you looking for a mid-century modern home?

Use SimpleShowing to connect with a real-estate agent who can help. Plus, when you buy a mid-century modern home with a SimpleShowing Agent, you’ll qualify for our Buyer Refund Program, which pays out an average of $5,000 towards your closing costs.

Contact us today to find out more.

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