Thursday, July 14, 2011

Mid century retro? modern?

We made a stop at Mel's Diner while vacationing near Pigeon Forge, Tennessee. We studied the floors: a black and white checked tile with black grout. Reminded ourselves of how much we like booth seating with our kids.

It leads me to a question. When renovating a 1950s home you can create a black and white diner look.
retro kitchen decor
Or the mid century modern (Eichler-esque) look.
MCM kitchens
And while we prefer the danish modern/eichler look, we'd like it to have some whimsy. Any thoughts on merging the 2? And how to do it affordably? Would love Saarinen tulip table without the price tag...


  1. I've always liked both looks, but I've never compared them side-by-side. I gotta say, the mid century modern look wins for me by a landslide. I do like the idea of merging the two styles, though. I think the best way to do that is to either a) do the diner thing but pare it way down for a cleaner look (maybe find a formica/chrome table but don't go overboard w/the 50's stools and the 50's clock and all the other tchotchkes that go along with that era); or b) keep it clean and simple for the mid century modern look (and include a statement piece like a table to drive the point home), but then throw in hints of the diner thing with big checkered floors, but maybe in a more muted color palette.

  2. I totally agree. we prefer a cleaner look than the top photo but maybe a light color + white checkered floor would work. not sure what we'll end up doing for a table--I remember someone making their own tulip table using an existing base. It might just be whatever the best deal we can find at an estate sale. I'm not opposed to a formica table!