Post by Category : Mid-Century Decor

Time for a Kitchen Update?  0


As the housing market improves, more homeowners are focusing on remodeling their kitchens. More than half of residential architects surveyed say they are reconfiguring the kitchen to accommodate a recharging area for tablet computers and smartphones and increased space for recycling or a pantry. Integrating the family/dining/kitchen remains popular, as does making kitchens more adaptable with universal design features that allow homeowners to age in place. (source: What would you do to this kitschy kitchen?

Mr. Roger Goes Window Shopping…Online  2

With the typical fall weather making an early appearance here in Seattle (hello, buckets of rain!), I decided to hunker down inside and do some window shopping online. What better portal than Etsy? Dreaming about Seattle’s Indian summer which is coming soon (right?), I chose a color palette of rich golden yellows. Following is a collage of mod mid-century gems for the living room.

Roger midcentury great room ideas

1. 1960s velveteen lounge chair from Al’s Redesign Vintage

2. 1960s credenza with tambour doors and pyramid cabinets from The Modern Historic

3. 1950s-60s teak, atomic lamp (shade not included) from The Vintage Co

4. 1950s-60s original oil pastel artwork from LA Vintage Furnishings

5. Mid-century modern orange tweed sofa from Modnique



Give Your Home a Valentine Gift  3

Mr. Roger can’t resist a trip through the Etsy vortex. As many of you know, the Etsy vortex is difficult to resist. When you are looking for vintage items online, Etsy is a one-stop shopping haven! On this trip, Mr. Roger stumbled across mid-century home furnishings in ravishing red…perfect for Valentine’s Day!

First stop, an original 1958 Knoll Executive Side Chair from Remnant PDX.

Vintage Knoll Side Chair

Then I found this beauty from Germany…a 50s or 60s era side table with a red laminate top from Berliner Strasse.

Vintage red table

Every mid-century home needs a vintage Pyrex bowl…here’s one in red from Bel Modo.

Vintage Pyrex bowl

What about red-striped, frosted highballs? Here’s a set from Delve Chicago.

Vintage Red Stripe Highballs

I stopped in at Mom’s Heirlooms and found this sweet vintage tablecloth.

Vintage Tablecloth

But I was still looking for the perfect, mid-century Valentine’s Day gift. I found it in this vintage heart-shaped ashtray. Although Mr. Roger doesn’t smoke, with a good cleaning, I can envision using it as a candy dish!

Vintage Glass Ashtray

When was your last trip to the Etsy vortex and did you find any sweet mid-century treasures?

Retro Furnishing Resources: Far Out!  0

Besides selling real estate in Seattle, one of Mr. Roger’s favorite activities is checking out vintage and retro-inspired home furnishing stores around the Seattle area. When I’m not on the hunt for the perfect set of vintage highballs or Pyrex bakeware in olive green (you know what I’m talking about…with the “crazy daisy” flower pattern), I pop into my favorite mid-century home furnishings shops to see what’s new (or old that’s new!). I’d like to share a few of my favorites here in Seattle…

Capitol Hill

Area 51 – new and vintage mid-century furniture and lighting

Seattle Area 51

Retrofit – sofas, knick-knacks, and George Nelson clocks, oh my!


Alchemy Collections – modern and contemporary furniture with a retro flair

Great Jones Home – luxurious vintage-inspired home decor

Chartreuse International – new and vintage modern pieces (online ordering as well!)


Fremont Vintage Mall – collective of vintage furnishings, decor, and more…great collection of mid-century goodies!

Fremont Vintage Mall


Antika – antique store that specializes in mid-century teak furniture…a must-visit!


Rejuvenation – lighting and “house parts” from classic to deco to mid-century modern; and they buy salvage!

Seattle Rejuvenation

My list of favorite vintage home furnishings shops is on my website on the page, Retro Resources. I will be updating the list as I roam the neighborhoods of Seattle showing houses to home buyers while always keeping a keen eye open for new vintage shops. Do you have a favorite in Seattle that you’d like to share with me? Please do!

Baby, It’s Cold Outside  2

Johnny and Margaret knew how to sing it. Mr. Roger is definitely beginning to feel it. Here in Seattle the temperature dipped into the 30s a few evenings (34F Monday night…brrrrr). Time to cozy up to the hearthstone and light up the fireplace.

Mr. Roger loves and appreciates his modest 1955 brick fireplace surround and mantel. During the mid-century, the fireplace – modest or magnificent – was the focal point of every proper living room. Over the past few months, Mr. Roger has curated a collection of favorite fireplaces – vintage and current – that elicit a mid mod vibe, like this simple, white-painted brick fireplace wall from a mid-century home in Seattle’s Capitol Hill neighborhood.

On Retro Renovation‘s site, you find “time capsules”…homes that haven’t been updated…check out the one featuring a “rotunda-style” living room with a round double-sided fireplace.


In the famous words of Johnny Mercer and Margaret Whiting…

Margaret: My mother will start to worry…

Johnny: Hey beautiful, what’s your hurry?

M: And father will be pacing the floor.

J: Listen to that fireplace roar.

M: So really, I’d better scurry.

J: Beautiful, please don’t hurry.

M: Well, maybe just a half a drink more.

J: Put some music on while I pour.”

Celebrate Halloween Mid-Century Style  2

While Mr. Roger is on a “decor” and “design” kick and with Halloween right around the corner, why not decorate for Halloween in the classic mid-century style? Mr. Roger loves to hand out (and eat) candy for the hordes of trick-or-treaters that roam the neighborhood on Halloween night. To get in the holiday spirit this year, Mr. Roger combed the Internet abyss for mid-century inspired decorations.

Tabletop cut-outs of vintage jackolantern kids from Traditions Holiday Store…cute and creepy!

Scare ’em before they get to the door…why dress up your pink flamingos when you can buy skel-a-mingos?

What better tabletop decor than a honeycomb pumpkin from D. Blumchen & Company?!?!

Nothing scarier than black cats, right? This pair from Penny Penguin Vintage on Etsy would be perfect on my mid-century sideboard…

Still need costume ideas? Get sewing now! Here are some great images from a 1958 Sears Catalog…

$2.79 for the Popeye costume! Those were the days…those were the days…


Accessorizing Your Mad Men Office on Etsy  0

Last week, I featured Etsy items perfect for redesigning your “Mad Men” look-alike office. This week, we venture into the world of accessorizing your mid-century modern, “Mad Men” office…Don Draper style! We start with the inspiration photos of Don’s lounge area and desk in his office.


The artwork above the couch is so striking, so I went searching on the Internet Highway for an image of the painting. This mid-century inspired artwork was painted by artist Michal Shapiro, who not only paints, but is a videographer, musician, music journalist, and record producer, and blogs regularly on The Huffington Post. I went searching on Etsy for something similar with the same color scheme and dimensions, and found something to fit the bill from Etsy seller, vPorterhouse.


I love the pop of color on Don’s couch. A search of “yellow square pillow” didn’t bring up anything that resembled the pillow in the center of the couch but I found a groovy orange one from VintageWolfy on Etsy.

And some fabulous vintage golden velvet round pillows from drowsySwords to mirror the orange pillows that flank Don’s office couch.

Don likes his whiskey, and the gold-rimmed lowball glassware is divine! I found so many options on Etsy that I had a hard time narrowing it down to just one style…but I settled on these beauties from Carmen & Ginger (with a matching pitcher!).

Now, we venture over to Don’s desk area…no mid-century desk is complete without a rotary phone! Don’s phone is black, and Etsy seller, Apple Charlotte doesn’t disappoint!

Sitting behind Don’s desk on the windowsill is a globe. I found a great one from Vintage-AD on Etsy.

I had to stop here before I got too carried away! But I’m always on lookout for more mid-mod decor. Share your Don Draper-style finds with Mr. Roger!




Intentional Space: Modern Influences for a Mid-Century Home  2

Thanks to the recent popularity in the mid-century modern movement, folks with mid-century homes can retain the flavor of the past, yet utilize modern-day advancements in home design and decor. During the post-war years, home interiors, like the architecture of the time, moved toward a fresh, clean, pared-down attitude. Mid-century home interiors, spring-boarding off the modern influences of home appliances and furniture, prospered along with the era’s new mentality of form and function. Home interiors were intentionally designed to combine both the form of home’s exterior architecture with the function of the home’s interior footprint. Following are a handful of home interior ideas for those of us who appreciate the form and function of the mid-century modern movement without sacrificing warmth and coziness.






Do you prefer form over function? Function over form? Or both form and function? Tell me! Do tell!

Mid-Century Decor: It’s Not All About Stark  0

1953 Armstrong ad

When you think of the mid-century modern movement of the ’50s and ’60s, does your mind go to the stark, clean images of modern home interiors? Do you pine for more warmth on those insides?

In a recent article on Houzz, the author shared her appreciation for colorful, personality-infused mid-century interiors. The article and accompanying photos got me thinking: Did the mid-century homes of the 1950s and ’60s feature stark interiors? Certainly the forefathers of mid-century modern architecture and interior design wanted it that way, but what about the Average Joe’s and Jane’s that just wanted a cozy home? I decided to take a tour through the mid-century archives on the Internet highway and found a few gems to share.

Betty Pepis Interior Decoration A to Z, 1965
Image: sandiv999
1954 Living Room
1961 Living Room, House Beautiful
1956 Living Room
Image: sportsuburban
1962 GP Paneling
Image: sportsuburban

Do you have more gems to share? Let me know! I’m always looking for more!

Original Kitsch  2

Mr. Roger loves his kitschy 1955 kitchen in all its glorious original wonder. A dark red tile backsplash complements the matching paint color on the original cabinets with the original cabinet handles. The original countertop still does its job…stylishly, at least. However, with limited counter space, no dishwasher, a fridge off on its own, and a stand-alone 1970s/1980s era range on another wall, the kitchen is in need of some modern day assistance which most likely means a new countertop. The search for a countertop will be a breeze thanks to Wilsonart’s Indie Collection (Retro Malt, maybe?)

The real kitsch in this kitchen is the vintage dinette set in the corner. Not long after moving into the house, my mom called to tell me she found a table at a neighbor’s garage sale to “match” my countertops with six chairs in a “strange yellow/orange” color. Neighbors were moving into a retirement home, so I knew it was a great vintage find. And at $100…perfect! Well, transporting from Dallas (Oregon, not Texas) to Seattle proved to be “not so perfect”. Without a large vehicle to transport it, I decided to take the train to Dallas (remember, it’s Oregon) and rent a van or small truck to bring it back. Hah! Not so easy there, city boy! Apparently, in small town, rural Oregon, there is no such thing as a van or small truck to rent! What I ended up with…a 12-footer! I spent more on the truck and gas back to Seattle than I did on the dinette set. All that effort for my little vintage table…it was worth it! It’s a keeper!

Do you have a kitschy kitchen story? Share it with me! And share your 1950s kitchen photo in all its fabulous original glory on Mr. Roger’s Neigbhorhoods Facebook page.