A Beginner’s Guide to Mid-Century Modern Bedrooms

Mid-century modern bedroom design isn’t just a passing trend. The mid-century design style was popularized during the 1940s and is still popular today. Defined by clean lines, organic forms, bold, primary colors, and high functionality, the style has a wonderfully timeless appeal. It’s also easy to work this style into interiors while blending it with a variety of other aesthetics!

It’s easy to list all the reasons to love mid-century design! However, coming up with mid-century modern bedroom ideas can be tough if you don’t know where to start. If you’re interested in incorporating a little retro style into your master bedroom, check out these 10 essential design tips!

mid-century bedroom

1. Opt for Foundational Furniture with Tapered Legs

Tapered legs are maybe the most pronounced feature of Mid-Century Modern era furniture. Incorporate this design element into your space through furniture that features round legs that get gradually thinner as they reach the floor. Finding pieces that show off tapered legs is one of the best ways to bring mid-century modern style to your home.

The delicate legs add simple elegance to more substantial foundational pieces, like a mid-century modern bed or modern bedroom sets. It’s also a great idea for small spaces because narrow legs create an open flow beneath furniture to give the illusion that you have more space than you do.

Bonus! Mid-century modern bedroom ideas featuring furniture with tapered legs make it easy to run the vacuum around the bedroom.

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mid-century bedroom

2. Mix up Your Materials

Mid-century modern bedroom design loves to play with a mix of materials. From the outset, mid-20th century designers were known for their use of new and innovative materials like fiberglass, molded plywood, and bent tubular steel.

To bring mid-century modern bedroom ideas to life today, get creative with modern design involving a variety of materials! This includes wood, leather, wool, woven jute or seagrass, and metals. The more materials you bring into your mid-century modern bedroom ideas the merrier! This also keeps your look dynamic and full of contrast—two key elements to any great mid-century modern bedroom design scheme.

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3. Pair Primary Colors with Neutrals

Primary colors are a definite hallmark of mid-century modern bedroom ideas. A Lot of mid-century design was about creating approachable spaces, and color was a key way they infused spaces with a sense of playfulness and joy. If you remember the popular TV show, Mad Men, all you have to do is imagine Don Draper’s living room to get a sense of how important color was to mid-century modern style.

When it comes to the mid-century modern design palette, think primary colors—aka yellows, reds, and blues. Earthy hues are also big in mid-century modern design. And don’t be afraid to modernize these bold shades with neutral color palettes—this can be a much easier palette to work within contemporary and modern design.

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4. Show off Natural Wood Tones

Natural wood finishes are also central to mid-century modern bedroom style. A big tenet of mid-century modern design was celebrating the natural beauty of materials, so this is a great jumping point for incorporating the look into your design.

Opt for furniture that shows off natural wood grain and stick to a single wood finish (all dark, acorn, or light) in mid-century modern bedroom ideas. Acorn is the top choice of mid-century modern bedroom design, but some of our favorite mid-century modern bedroom ideas include hardy woods such as Teak and Walnut. Pick the hue that best fits into your design plan!

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5. Play With Patterns

Patterns are an integral part of mid-century modern design and the style favors bold geometric, organic and abstract patterns. Go for bright colors w/ sharp contrast like this gorgeous boho mid-century master bedroom look!

Patterns bring a sense of life and interest to the simplicity and clean lines of mid-century modern style. Geometric wall art or patterned pillows/rugs are a great way to tie the look of a mid-century modern bedroom together.

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6. Think Function-First

The mid-century modern movement went big on form and FUNCTION. When designing a mid-century bedroom, make sure the design is as practical as it is stylish. It’s easy to add functional touches like closed storage nightstands, armoires or dressers. And benches are great for extra seating around a platform bed—they also make great spaces for laying out tomorrow’s clothes, taking off shoes, etc. Think about how you’ll use the space and create a mid-century modern bedroom design with function in mind!

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7. Take a Minimal Approach to Styling

Mid-century modern fully embraces the less is more philosophy—take a minimal approach to your surface styling so the sculptural forms and materials get a chance to shine. Uncluttered surfaces and clean lines are a good start for any mid-century modern bedroom! Then, remember to stick with a muted color palette—choose one or two colors for a minimal vibe.

This mid-century modern bedroom design features soft pops of pink and yellow to add warmth to the neutral palette. Plus, minimal styling is perfect for small mid-century modern bedrooms because it creates a sense of more space.

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8. Revel in Natural Texture

Mid-century architecture provides excellent inspiration for bedroom ideas! These spaces were designed to be streamlined and clean, in part to celebrate the natural beauty of their surroundings.

Mid-century modern design is no different! To make it work its full magic, let the outdoors come indoors by making use of natural light and letting it mingle with a bold wall color like this bedroom. Fill up your mid-century modern bedroom design with lots of natural textures, like these woven baskets and a jute rug.

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9. Opt for Organic and Geometric Forms

Mid-century modern design readily embraced both organic (rounded, often asymmetrical) and geometric forms to create spaces that were dynamic and inviting. Items like these gourd-shaped lamps were a staple of mid-century modern style!

The sunburst mirror is also a classic example of century modern design. And we love how the soft lines and organic shape of the headboard are juxtaposed with the sharp geometry of nightstands. The play of shapes in this room have a feminine mid-century design that would make Miss Masel jealous!

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10. Embrace Retro Shapes

Starbursts were a very popular accent during the peak of mid-century modern style—the classic shape above the headboard might look familiar to you. Have fun with fun retro shapes in your mid-century bedroom decor! We are into the way this retro mirror and lamps pair with the classic blue and white color scheme.

You can even pick a theme for your retro collection! But don’t get carried away—it’s starburst or boomerangs, but not both. A single mid-century bedroom shape or style feels more fresh and contemporary and you risk leaning too far into eclectic if you start combining too many. In this room, we played with starburst shapes in the mirror + lamps for awesome mid-century modern design with balance and composure.

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  1. […] bedroom design looks amazing with touches of mid-century modern design. This bedroom is all about stylish comfort and immediately creates a relaxed and hip atmosphere. It […]

  2. […] into mid-century modern bedroom furnishings, like a honey wood bed that has clean, modern lines and a dresser with tapered legs. […]

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