Dec 15

Drawing on TV’s Mad Men for Living Room Inspiration


mid century modern styleThe hit American period drama Mad Men may have wrapped up its seventh and final season this past May, but it will surely remain a steady source for interior design inspiration for years to come. The sixties-set drama gave audiences an in-depth look at mid-century modern design, retro decor, and vintage reproduction furniture.

Wanting to bring more Mad Men style into your home? Here are some tips on choosing furniture and accessories for your living room that would look at home on any Mad Men studio set.

Think mid-century modern.

You may recall how earlier this month we discussed defining characteristics of mid-century modern furniture in this blog post. Mid-century modern furniture is known for its clean design, high functionality, bold hues, and experimentation with new materials. This furniture truly is at the center of Mad Men interior design, and you’ll see it placed in just about every 1960s style set created for the show. In Don Draper and Megan Calvet’s Manhattan apartment, for example, you’ll find furniture pieces with a geometric design and plenty of bold colors throughout. We think this Orion Sofa or this Davenport Bi-Sectional would make the perfect mid-century modern addition to a Mad Men inspired living room.

Add statement lighting.

Something else you’ll notice as you study Don Draper and Megan Calvet’s living room is that they decorate with accent lighting. These lighting pieces not only introduce more light into a room but also add some serious personality. We think this Aolani Table Lamp and this Kovacs Modern Table Lamp both add functionality to a room while at the same time making a bold statement.

Feature bold art.

Mad Men sets are filled with bold art pieces reminiscent of the work of some of the sixties’ most prominent artists. You see bold black and white graphic posters reminiscent of Bridget Riley’s Op art; geometric wall clocks à la George Nelson; and bold furniture pieces that stand as works of art themselves. Think bold, geometric, modern, and imaginative.

Add bold colors to a neutral base.

As far as creating a color palette for your living room, you might be tempted to go with all bold colors, using your artwork as your inspiration. Keep in mind, however, that the mid-century modern style tends to be grounded in neutral hues, with bold colors such as orange, magenta, and turquoise serving as accents. Add color with things like accent pillows, dinnerware, vases, or lighting pieces. These bubble vases, for example, would make an excellent addition to the Mad Men inspired living room.