The Mid Century Modern Open Plan

The post WWII, also called mid century, was characterized by a positive way of thinking and the desire for a better future.
Architects and designers caught this hope and desire designing wider and brighter house plans considering the outside as an important part of them. The presence of wide living spaces -with big glass windows communicating with the landscape- where people could enjoy their time together were, then, the main characteristic of mid-century houses.

The interior decor keywords for the Mid-Century American home were dialogue -among the flooring, furniture, lightning and the architecture itself- uncluttered spaces, clean lines, natural materials, warm colours and the ‘open floor plan’. As I mentioned earlier -from the Mid-Century on- the idea of reserving rooms for special occasions disappeared, replaced by the concept of a large space designed for daily uses: the so called ‘open floor plan’.
This new concept of home become the key to the Mid-Century interior.

The main idea behind the open floor plan was to bring all the family members in the same space, giving them -at the same time- the possibility of doing different activities thanks to specific zones reserved within it.
The American mid-century living concept -as later was called- was originally developed in northern European countries like Denmark, Sweden and Finland where architects as Alvar Aalto already designed and built houses with a main common area for the family since decades: the Aalto Villa Mairea is a great example of it.

Although wide living spaces were now utilized for activities that in the past were reserved to specific rooms, architects conceived the space as flexible and with special interior decoration elements to have some privacy when needed ad quiet.

An interesting example is the Italian architect Gio Ponti house in Milan, completed in 1957. Ponti divided the apartment with retractable accordion-like screens but used a dynamic tile flooring and at the same ceiling decor throughout to provide a visual link between the separate spaces. This way, Ponti was able to link the new concept of ‘open floor plan’ living with the more traditional separation of living spaces found in 50s Italian dwellings.

Mid Century has been one of the most creative age for design that influenced the interior decors of the last decades. To discover everything about it , check Mid Century Home now!

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