Mid-Century Modern architecture speckled post-war suburbia throughout much of the 1950s and 60s and beyond, Architect, Frank Lloyd Wright, credited as the driving force behind the movement, designed homes flat roofs, expansive windows, and multi-functional aspects built into the interiors.
You can see Wright’s work across Iowa, including the Paul J. and Ida Trier house built in 1958 in the heart of Johnston. The Usonian style home, coined by Wright as a simple, stylish, small house designed for the middle class is a perfect example of clean lines, functionality and creative uses for every usable space.
Having lived in Clear Lake and worked in Mason City I've had the pleasure of seeing some of his work first hand. One of the most impressive is the renovation of the Historic Park Inn Hotel in downtown Mason City. You should really check it out on a weekend road trip as well as a visit to the Stockman House also in Mason City and just a short drive away the Alvin Miller home in Charles City. Well worth the drive.
And Natural elements, mixed metals, and geometric shapes adorned Mid-mod interiors. Think Mad Men. If this style appeals to you fire up Netflix, and watch a few episodes of the popular series for inspiration or consider these suggestions.
Here is a great example above. This is an 8000 sq ft. Mid-Mod Dave and I renovated last year. I can't wait to show you the after photos. I melted when I walked in for all the history just sitting there ready for me to explore. It was stunning as is and even more beautiful after. And yes, that is a sunken living room with built in fire pit and a 3 story waterfall to boot. They kept both!
When decorating, look for sofas with low backs. Those finished with natural wood elements or upholstered in light leather or muted neutrals. Sectionals with multi-function pieces are great for entertaining. Tufted Chesterfield’s offer comfort and a touch of masculinity. Sofa’s with built-in end tables work well in small spaces.
While you are out road tripping skip on over to Eagle Grove, Iowa and visit Tom at Gramma's Attic and Antique Vintage and Retro. These are just a few examples of what you might find. Makes me want to grab a martini!
Other fundamental interior elements include platform beds or those with low headboards. Soft curved seating as you see here, and dining pieces such as Eames inspired chairs and tables with peg, diagonal, or hairpin legs.
Consider lighting changes with metal elements such as globe pendant lighting, mobile chandeliers (I call them “sputnik-esque”), and arc floor and table lamps. Yes, they are all back on trend and readily available!
Introduce geometric shapes with accessories, wall art, fabrics, and wallpaper.
If you are drooling over all these retro rooms it's okay, we are too! Now, wipe off the drool and start clicking and following these two Iowa businesses.
Another favorite Mid-Mod haunts, is Modville . It is right down the road from us. Keith and Amy are not only fun, they know their stuff and can help find what you are looking for, even if you can't find it in the 6000 square foot space, they can find it somewhere on this lovely planet. And....there is also a likely possibility they may even have some PBR on hand so stop in and start shopping.
Frank Lloyd Wright once said, “Style is important, A style is not." If you appreciate Mid-mod elements, go ahead and pepper pieces throughout your home that speak to you. Meld design styles. Create a feeling reflective of you! Design and love your very own personal brand and style.
Freddie Mercury may have the best definition of the Boho design style we will explore this month. The word bohemian originated in France in the early nineteenth century and defined the lifestyle of Gypsies. Writers, artists, and musicians often made up this group. Rebelling against social norms, they embraced living a more easy come, easy go, vagabond lifestyle for their art.
AUTHOR EDIT: If you continue reading without wanting to punch the screen because of all the inserted Ã¢â¬â¹ that are going to pop up starting now. Congratulations! It's a code issue and although google is GREAT the fix is way beyond my pay grade! Sorry friends.
The Boho interior design style embraces the quote by Queen that "any way the wind blows, doesn't really matter to me." A concept that anything goes. Gypsies made do with treasures they found on their travels creating a cozy if only temporary living space on the road. Think bold jewel-toned colors, texture, quirky accent pieces, and lots of patterns. To achieve the look in your home consider these tips. â
Neutrals: Start with warm colors as your base for furnishings. Everything will be layered with textures, patterns, and pops of color so having warm foundation pieces such as a sofa and chairs will accentuate the beauty of every article you bring into the room. â
Mix old and new: Scour vintage shops for pieces. Use furnishings you have collected over time to create a cozy, carefree feeling. Bright rugs with bold patterns can anchor your room. If vintage is not your thing, consider shopping All Modern for all things boho from rugs to chairs and pillows. â
More is more: Fill every space with what makes you happy â books, sculptures, pillows, fabrics, and art. The goal is to create beauty in the mess. Incorporate pieces that spark memories and happiness. A juxtaposition between a new lamp, a hand dyed throw and a small sculpture and a stack of old books create an eye-catching vignette. âThis room is just yummy. Check out all the cool bohemian ideas at the_indigo_leopard_home
Add Life: Macrame plant hangers with live greenery is one easy way to add texture and natural elements to your Boho room. A large plant in a corner such as a dieffenbachia helps soften the room. â
Finally and most importantly embrace your wanderlust. Add finishing touches that conjure up roads less traveled Collections and art from your travels, that emulate a well-traveled space full of life! â
Angela and Dave Schrad
DIY to décor, get inspired by their ideas, resources and projects.