About 6 years ago when I became interested in interior styling, I began to note all the mid-century flooding the market. I liked it. Growing up I always loved decorating my Barbie’s plastic a-frame and gluing together cardboard houses for the less stylish neighbors to sit in (because the boxes I had available were never big enough to build anything Barbie could stand in). I played with vintage toys like Betsy McCall and wished I had all the pretty vintage dresses for Barbies that kids in the 60s had. I was always fascinated with the craftsmanship and attention to detail of vintage toys – real metal zippers! This probably began my love of mid-century. I just didn’t know what it was. My mother has always loved antiques and bought me a Victorian-style dollhouse when I was in grade school. That aesthetic informed a lot of my own decorating choices up until I started paying attention to my apartment in 2013 and started my first design blog.
I grew up in a house full of floral paintings and terrible family photos on the wall. There was no attention to or celebration of art. As I began to study mcm on my own, I began to love the wonky portraits. You’ve probably seen them. Th single girl, the solo man. Sitting there, staring out. I don’t know what it is about the 60s style of painting that captures me so. I suppose it is the impressionist style. I enjoy the loose brush work and bright but never harsh color palettes. That’s the sort of art I’m drawn to most – fluid, hurried lines. Also, the use of a lot of blue. I like blue. Blue is calming and serene. I also like that the person is the sole subject of the painting, there is no fluff detail around them. These are simple works.
I’m working on my collection of nude mid-century paintings. I was inspired by Sally Breer‘s LA apartment some years ago. Sally is a designer who also chooses each piece with a lot of thought and intention. Here are some inspiring mid-century paintings for you to enjoy. Some of these have sat in my favorites folder for a long time and are no longer available for purchase but you can still appreciate their beauty. It’s fun to go to antique/vintage stores and look for mid-century paintings in real life. No one wants them because they’re of some random person. All for the more for you and me!