affordable mid century modern sofa

Affordable Mid Century Modern Sofa

Pam’s August 2011 story about places to buy an affordable mid century modern style sofa continues to be one of the most popular stories on the blog. And good news — in the year and half since this first story, there are even more, affordable mid century modern style sofas that are available for sale. The mid mod madness is as mad as ever! Pam asked me to go “online shopping” to help out all the readers looking for sleek sofas — so here is your 2013 update. This story took me two full days — I dug deep — and found 240 mid century styled sofas, for sale at 33 companies. That’s a lot of sofas! In fact, I am pretty much dizzy with sofas dancing in my head.
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Affordable Mid Century Modern Sofa

Delightfully playful, stylistically sculptural, and a touch otherworldly, Mid-Century Modern furniture is our not-so-secret obsession. A catchall term used to classify designs produced during the Mid 20th Century, Mid-Century Modern furniture is easily identifiable by its swooped forms, teak frames, and bold-colored upholstery. Iconic makers include Adrian Pearsall, Milo Baughman, and, of course, Charles and Ray Eames.
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Affordable Mid Century Modern Sofa

One thing to consider and check for, on all the sofas that I show, is their size and scale. Back in the day, sofas were not 40″ deep — oversized — the way they often are today. Some of these sofas are more less-deep and less-high than others — more “authentically” proportioned for smaller mid century rooms with lower ceilings. Mid century = long, low, horizontal lines.  On the other hand, deep sofas can be very comfortable if you are tall or large and also if you like to hunker down to watch TV. So — thinking about the proportion of the sofa to your space, vetted with how you will realistically use it, is the task. I’m going to guess that the sofas in this Vanguard line come in under $2,000 if you don’t go too crazy with the upholstery.  Michael Weiss mid century style sofas for Vanguard.
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Affordable Mid Century Modern Sofa

Ikea has several affordable sofa options for mid century modern living rooms. I’ve only ever owned a Klippan — which was firm but comfortable, though a bit short for cat naps. It held up well, and I sold it because I wanted a larger couch for my tiny living room and didn’t have room to keep both. I’ve heard good things about the Karlstad sofa, but have never sat on one myself. To be sure, their products are generally inexpensive. The Kivik sofa, above, is $649. In regard to buying a sofa, I’d generally counsel to buy the best you can possibly afford — aim to own it a lifetime, even.
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Affordable Mid Century Modern Sofa

Here’s the True Modern Luna sofa, with its Danish Modern legs — available in several configurations, each of their mid mod sofa styles can be customized to fit your needs. Check out this company’s Sample Sale area, too. Mid Century Sofas from True Modern Furniture.
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Affordable Mid Century Modern Sofa

For those who dream in shades of cool California fruit trees (think sunburst orange and creamy avocado), like their teak-oiled arms accented with a bit of bright brass, and crush on anything Eames: meet Mid-Century Modern. A term used to classify furniture constructed between 1945 to 1970, Mid-Century Modern style encompasses everything from sparse Scandinavian pieces to exotic Brazilian masterpieces decked out in pillow-padded frames and butter-like hides. It’s a care-free, effortless style that brinks on boho, but thanks to integrated elements of Danish Modernism, never veers into overly layered or how-exactly-do-I-clean-that? territory.
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Affordable Mid Century Modern Sofa

Based in Winnipeg, EQ3 was founded in 2001 with the goal of offering more modern furniture to the North American market. EQ3 sells a wide variety of mid century modern sofa styles — all of which can be customized with fabric and leg choices they offer. My favorite is the Byrd sofa shown above — which retails for $1,099.
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Affordable Mid Century Modern Sofa

In its hey-day Mid-Century Modern furniture was not one to play it demure color-wise. Upholstery in shades of saffron, cobalt, and poppy was commonplace. Updated for a new millennium, however; we’re inclined to favor shade-dwelling colors a bit more than the full-sun showstoppers. Mid-Century shapes look divine when cloaked in emerald, navy, and oxblood velvets. With tables and case goods, opt for pieces with slightly darker finishes and brass or turquoise hardware or inlays. Unexpected metallic or stone will make for a room that reads more ambiguous (and glam) than the usual, brisk Scandinavian look.
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The Duncan (above) is just one of least 12 sofas from Rowe Furniture that could look beautiful in our mid century interiors. Even more, really — a lot of their line has what I’d call “modern-to-traditional” styling, meaning they are very versatile and come in a rainbow of colors. Easy-to-use website. Prices are not listed — but I’m guessing they would fit in our $2K and under budget. Mid century style couches by Rowe. 
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Palliser’s selection of mid century modern sofas leans a bit more towards the contemporary — but they still offer a wide range of fabric choices and several styles that would work in a mid century setting. These sofas are made in North America — in one of the company’s two plants in Winnipeg, Canada or Saltillo, Mexico.
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During a visit to Rejuvenation Lighting several years ago, Pam spotted this line of furniture for sale in their large showroom. It’s Castellano Custom Furniture — made right in Portland, and it sure appeared to be the real deal. They have a few mid century options on their website — but you’d have to contact them or visit a showroom to see what else they might have to offer. Though we aren’t sure it really hits under $2,000, we’re keeping it on the list anyway, it’s probably in the range. Modern sofa from Castellano Custom Furniture.
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After Pam’s original story, reader Kurt suggested the “Florence Knoll” knockoff from White on White — the Oslo — shown above. At 57″ wide, I’d not quite call this a sofa, but it makes the list because it’s nice to see new, smaller companies. It seems they have added a few more offerings to the list. See all the mid century modern sofas at White on White.
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Above, Gracie sofa by Perch Furniture. Based in Portland (there is a bird in their logo tee hee), workshop in LA. These guys get double extra bonus points for rockin’ the orange. Also available are the three other mid century-esque styles below.
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The tailored shape of our Monroe Mid-Century Sectional is deceptively comfortable, with wide cushions and handy bolster pillows. Available in platinum linen weave fabric, it's hand upholstered and assembled in the USA.
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New materials like bent plywood, fiberglass, and acrylic made it easy for designers to forge into previously uncharted territory. For the first time, they were able to produce furniture that wasn’t hammered and nailed together so much as it was sculpted. Additionally, manufactures like Knoll and Herman Miller provided designers with large-scale platforms on which to promote and distribute their designs. These manufacturers helped Mid-Century Modernism permeate the cultural consciousness, which in large part, has led to its enduring appeal.
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White Furniture They have locations in New York and San Francisco, and they manufacture knockoffs of classic mid-century designs. The quality is much less solid than the real thing, but the prices are low.
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MUJI This Japanese store has multiple locations in New York City, as well as a US website for national orders. Their selection of sofas, beds, shelving, and tables is simple, stripped-down, and inexpensive. White Furniture They have locations in New York and San Francisco, and they manufacture knockoffs of classic mid-century designs. The quality is much less solid than the real thing, but the prices are low. The Grove Furniture Based out of New Jersey, the Grove sells solid wood unfinished furniture. Styles tend to be basic and traditional, but it’s a good source for cabinets and case goods that could be painted any color you like. Related Video: Peter Klinkert Explains Why IKEA is a Leader in the Field
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Roy’s Home Furnishings Roy’s is a 30-year-old Chicago institution. They’re known for excellent prices on upholstered furniture and big pieces like dining tables and beds, and they recently launched an online catalog. S Dania They have stores scattered throughout suburban metro areas in Illinois, Minnesota, and the Pacific Northwest. Styles are a mix of contemporary and Scandinavian-modern, and prices are affordable. Chiasso This Chicago store focuses on modern metal-frame furniture. Not all of it is cheap, but there are some very affordably priced sofas, tables, and shelving. They tend to carry small-scale pieces designed for apartment living. McMaster-Carr Supply Company Headquartered out of suburban Chicagoland, this catalog retailer specializes in industrial equipment. They’ll happily sell to retail customers, and you can find sturdy shelves and stools at great prices.
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Dania They have stores scattered throughout suburban metro areas in Illinois, Minnesota, and the Pacific Northwest. Styles are a mix of contemporary and Scandinavian-modern, and prices are affordable.
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Buying furniture online can be nerve wracking, but the supremely well-curated Etsy shop Select Modern is in a league of its own. Shop owners Danielle and Cory Kingdon have been selling midcentury-modern furniture, lighting and decor online since 2009, and they’re clearly well practiced. Their streamlined shipping system and high-quality inventory (Arthur Umanoff bar stool, anyone?) makes items sell quickly, so check their website frequently.

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