A woman reaches for a bowl of popcorn on her mid-century coffee table in a bright and clean living room
Comfier Homes by Alex Irving 3 minutes

How to style a mid-century modern living room

We love exploring interior design, such as boho or Hamptons-style interiors. And when it comes to styling a home, we might know a thing or two about getting the place ready for an Architectural Digest shoot.

If you’re a fan of mid-century modern decor, you’ve found your people. Because in this article, we’re talking with Bella Vie Interiors principal interior designer Lisa Alward about mid-century modern living room style and the pieces that fill the room, such as a mid-century coffee table, armchair and sideboards.

So, what exactly is mid-century modern?

Mid-century modern decor is a style that originated in the 20th century. We got the lowdown on some design history with interior designer Lisa Alward.

“It’s very much a post-war style. We’d gone through the ’40s where the style was really opulent and glamorous. There were lots of frills and bells and whistles.

“After the war there was a pared-back approach to interior styling. Mid-century modern really takes on that sort of rebellion against the styles from the decades before.

“It really centres around functionality, with clean lines and a combination of natural and man-made materials, along with more vibrant colours, like oranges, greens, teal and turquoise.”

Sounds bloody brilliant to us!

Get the mid-century modern look

Want to create a mid-century modern vibe at your place? Lisa says to look for furniture that keeps it easy and breezy.

“Clean lines and simple design: it’s all about opting for function over form and selecting practical, minimal designs.”

She says the best thing about mid-century modern is that it is super adaptable.

“You can start with a beautiful neutral sofa and begin to add bold highlights, maybe some cushions in brighter orange, burnt sage, yellow, turquoise, all those really optimistic colours.”

It can also work in other rooms in the house like the bedroom or home office. Think about pairing muted, neutral tones with splashes of colour to really bring this style to life.

Don’t have a big budget? Decorating your living room with some abstract prints and patterns, even just some basic cushions, would be enough to start revamping your home and getting that mid-century feel.

A beautiful neutral armchair with a bright cushion is perfect for a mid-century modern living room
Even a simple bright cushion on a neutral armchair can inject some mid-century vibes into your living room

Mid-century modern pieces

Want to fill your home with mid-century modern furniture? Here’s what you need to look out for.

✨ Mid-century armchair: we’re talking a timber frame with a bright upholstery in teals or oranges.

✨ Mid-century coffee table: a simple timber table with splayed legs captures the aesthetic perfectly.

✨ Mid-century modern rug: look for oversized abstract patterns of rectangles, circles and organic shapes.

✨ Mid-century modern sideboard: skinny legs in rosewood should be your go-to here.

✨ Mid-century modern sofa: keep things neutral with natural tones or a soft grey.

✨ Mid-century modern dining table: stick to clean lines and warm timbers like beach, elm or rosewood.

✨ Mid-century dining chairs: slim legs, simple design and muted colours will do the trick.

Must-have Koala pieces

Who doesn’t love giving their home a cheeky revamp? It’s such an easy way to change the vibe and get things feeling fresh again. And at Koala we do like it fresh!

Transform your living room into a mid-century dream with these key pieces from Koala:

✨ The clean lines and American ash make The Serenity Dining Table a top pick.

✨ Our Rectangle Coaster Coffee Table is the perfect style, with its simple design and slim legs.

✨ Add some texture and a pop of colour with our Beach Bum cushion in Surfers Paradise.

✨ The understated style, touchable curves and warm ash finish of the Kirribilli Bookshelf and Kirribilli Console fits this design aesthetic beautifully.

Get creative with your styling

Sure, with our comfy-as mattress, Koala is great in the bedroom. But we’re pretty good in other rooms too. In fact, Koala furniture and homewares are designed for every space in the house.

Discover everything from staples pieces like tables and chairs to pops of colour with cushions and throws. Start creating your dream mid-century modern living room today. 

Get fast delivery straight to your door and make the most of our 120-night free trial on all products. You read that right — 120 nights to try our products. Stylish indeed!

You Might Also Like...

How to style a mid-century modern bedroom like a pro

read article

Searching for the perfect Scandi coffee table? Here it is.

read article

4 lessons from an interior design pro

read article