Some Mid Century Modern homes are like pristine museums. Vintage furnishings and paraphernalia fill each room. Other mid century houses are eminently livable spaces, where quirky vintage finds meld with modern pieces.
This Mid Century Modern Seattle home of George and Mary Campbell falls into the latter category. The home tips its hat to a bygone era without becoming stuck in time. Built in 1957, the two-story house retains its original footprint and has had only minor structural modifications.
The interior design showcases the couple’s affinity for blending authentic mid century wares with affordable reproductions. As a result, it is a cozy and inviting Mid Century Modern Seattle abode with plenty of eye candy for the retro enthusiast.
“We both value visual art and design. An appreciation of each other’s style drew us together,” says Mary. She met her husband after relocating to Seattle from Big Sky Country. “Since we’ve been married, we have developed a specific passion for mid century style.”
Suited to Their Taste
After toughing it out in a Tudor house, the couple finally moved their vintage furnishings into a mid century abode. They had discovered a friend was selling her 1950s Mid Century Modern Seattle rambler in the coveted Blue Ridge neighborhood.
“My husband and I sought out this style of house because we love the distinctive architectural style of the mid century period,” Mary says. “We also wanted a home that had more light and an open floor plan. We didn’t want the small rooms and chopped up layouts that are so common in Seattle,” she adds.
Colorful Additions in the Mid Century Modern Seattle Rambler
The house measures about 1,700 square feet, not including a full basement of equal size. It combines a mid century design aesthetic with architectural elements typical of the Pacific Northwest. The couple closed on the property in late 2007 and over time have designed the interior to their own taste.
They painted accent walls in shades of Majestic Blue and Cypress Green, because a multi-color George Nelson sunburst clock inspired them.
In the living room, a pair of Nelson Bubble Saucer wall sconces flanks a gray velvet couch and original Haywood Wakefield coffee table. Nearby, a stately teak wall unit houses various books and vintage knickknacks. Mary collected them over the years at antique shops and thrift stores around Seattle and in her home state of Montana.
In the dining area, red metal mesh chairs surround a vintage Danish teak dining table. It’s an eye-catching contrast to the pistachio green walls.
Modified for Modern Living
The exterior looks much the same as when the home was built, with only minor modifications. They replaced the floor-to-ceiling dining room windows with more energy-efficient Milgard double-paned aluminum frames. The Campbells painted the dark brown cedar siding a period-perfect slate blue.
The only significant change the Campbells made to the original interior was opening up the kitchen wall. A wall and small pocket door closed off the kitchen from the living area originally.
“When we remodeled, we really just knocked that wall out and added the peninsula,” Mary explains. Now, the new design is more conducive to entertaining. In addition to removing the original appliances, the couple contracted local remodeling company Fivedot to replace the original cabinets. For instance, they chose custom-built Kerf cabinetry that matched the style of the home.
Mid Century Modern Seattle Comfort
Two years ago, they also redid the master bath. This included swapping out modern fixtures for a walnut veneer Europly vanity, also from Kerf, and mid century-inspired wall sconces.
The master bedroom has retro flair with vintage Heywood Wakefield nightstands and a low profile V-leg bed. Plastic deer heads from the 1950s are mounted on the wall above. However, the guest room is a mostly vintage-free zone, as is their daughter Molly’s room, save for a kitschy triad of faux mounted deer heads on one wall.
The Campbells aren’t hardcore about staying true to the era in which the house was built. Instead, they want family and friends to simply feel welcome in their Mid Century Modern Seattle home.
“We have always had a love for vintage things from all different periods,” Mary says. “Making a home that is stylish, functional, warm and inviting has always been important to both of us.”
Need more interior design inspiration? Check out this mid century renovation in North Carolina.