The majority of my free time is split between mentally adding items to my vintage finds bucket list and pinning recipes to Pinterest boards I will never actually look at. It might be a problem (the list, not Pinterest – how am i supposed to get anything done in real life when Pinterest is so damn entertaining?). I do attend flea markets monthly, pop into the two-story thrift shop down the street weekly, feverishly scan street curbs for discarded antiques daily. But, you just never know when you’ll uncover a treasure.
My personal list is pretty much based on mid-century decorating ideas I’ve drooled over in West Elm catalogs and hope to recreate on the cheap with secondhand goods. Numero uno? A vintage sunburst clock. Well, I was actually hoping for a starburst mirror. But when I saw this retro Seth Thomas sunburst clock plopped atop a pile of ‘80s wall art at a thrift shop in Bethlehem, I knew fate was intervening. And it was for the best. The clock’s gorgeous mid-century-inspired font and gilded rays give my living room major Don Draper cred while offering a pragmatic and pretty way to keep tabs on the time. Though I can’t tell you how many hours I’ve wasted away soaking in its perfect retro vibes. But, hey, when you can bump an item off a bucket list, you deserve to bask in the glory of it all for a bit. Below are some of my favorite mid-century decorating ideas filled with pieces sure to inspire a few additions to any thrifter’s most-wanted list.
Vintage Sunburst Clocks & Mirrors
When it comes to mid-century décor MVPs, there’s no better place to start than the vintage sunburst clock. A beaming blend of form and function, these retro timepieces work well in a gallery wall or shining solo. In terms of wall décor, I love the burst of metallic they offer in a place that otherwise only sees a pop of gold or silver in a photo frame.
Don’t you feel like tiny baby cherubs should be singing when you’re looking at this?? Gilded glory placed smack in the center of a media console makes total sense to me.
Placed off-center, these vintage pieces almost recreate the vibe of a serene sunset (or sunrise) – even if your home doesn’t come equipped with such a lucky view.
Equally unique as a sunburst clock, a starburst chandelier lends a little more whimsy than a flat wall adornment. I mean, they’re as close as you’re going to get to recreating an actual supernova unfolding in your home, what with the gilded spikes punctuated by miniature lightbulbs that cast an almost disco-style glow. Perfect for swaying to some 1950s swing tunes, ay?
Bertoia Chairs (a.k.a. Diamond Chairs)
If you don’t know ’em by name, you def know ’em by sight. Bertoia chairs, also known as diamond chairs, were forged from the mind a of mid-century design genius named Harry Bertoia. Their grid-like weave of wires feels simultaneously industrial and elegant. Throw a faux sheepskin hide atop and they feel endlessly inviting, too. Like mix-a-manhattan-and-melt-into-the-grooves inviting.
Alright, I’m ready for some Sinatra. What’s your favorite mid-century decor idea?