Glass Mid-Century Modern Jewelry

While in Portland, I wanted to pick up something special for my wife. While walking around the Saturday Market, a large open-air market, I happened upon Fred Imhoff's booth, Glass Drops. The name says it all, his jewelry is gorgeous little glass droplets, and it has a very mid-century and mid-century modern look.

I couldn't take my eyes off of one of the necklaces, so I knew I have found that something special. The necklace I bought is a slightly brighter version of this glass necklace.

He does three styles of glass jewelry: a three droplet necklace, a five droplet necklace and earrings. All of them would look fantastic with a Mad Men dress or a sleek modern outfit.

Imhoff's glass comes in variety of tints and twists, so you'll be able to find a set that matches any outfit.

Leave Your Luggage Here Posters

In the '50s and '60s the British Transport Commission commissioned a series of instructional "Leave Your Luggage Here" posters for the Tilling Group of Bus Companies. Any of them would make great wall art for a travel-themed nursery or mid-century modern nursery.

Leave Your Luggage Here by Christopher Hill

Leave Your Luggage Here by unknown

Leave Your Luggage Here by Roger J. Bigg

Leave Your Luggage Here by Harry Stevens

Leave Your Luggage Here by Daphne Padden

Leave Your Luggage Here by Harry Stevens

Charley Harper Travel Art

I am becoming a bigger and bigger fan of Charley Harper. He has some of the best kid stuff out there. He doesn't have a lot of travel-themed art, but he does have a few pieces.

Where East Meets West

Brazil Airlines, 1951

Redwood Drive Through

They'd be a great addition to any travel-themed nursery wall. His posters for the National Park Service would also fit the bill. You can learn more about them here.

My Trip to Rejuvenation Portland

I recently took a trip to Portland. And, of course, I stopped by Rejuvenation's home base. I've been drooling over their website and catalog long enough that I figured I should see things in person.

They are in, what I can only guess is, Portland's warehouse district. If it's not the warehouse district, it's a lot like what every other city's warehouse district looks like.

So it's a bit out of the way, but if you're in Portland, it's well worth the trip. It's great to see everything you've been planning your remodel/DIY projects around in person.

Not only do they have everything you've seen in the catalog/website, they have vintage items that they've found or sourced.

Including things that they've made high-quality reproductions of, for those of us that prefer to have the original (no matter how dirty/unpolished).

Vintage Sunbeam Mixmaster

This little treasure was recently found in and rescued from my grandfather's basement. It the model 12 Sunbeam Mixmaster and it still works.

The model 12 Sunbeam Mixmaster was made between 1957 and 1967 and was the first to feature 12 speeds.

It was available in chrome, turquoise, yellow, pink and white and is the last of the classic model Sunbeam Mixmaster mixers.

A more modern model of a Sunbeam Mixmaster is actually part of the Smithsonian's National Design Museum permanent collection. And the current Sunbeam Mixmaster mixer would fit pretty well in any mid-century modern kitchen.

Travel Photos with Map Mat

When my mom said, "There's something you should check out in Woman's Day; I think it'd look good in your travel nursery," I rolled my eyes like most sons would. But, I've got to give it to her, these map-matted travel photos would look pretty good in any travel-themed nursery. It seems super easy to do and in the end you get a really nice piece of travel art, not to mention some great memories, hanging on your wall. I'd suggest using a map for the country or state the photo is from, so it all ties together.

Eichler Mid-Century Doors

If you're planning on a mid-century modern front door or garage door re-do, you should definitely read this article, or at least the first three pages of it. It focuses on Eichler doors, which makes sense since it's on the Eichler Network site, but the basics can be applied to any mid-century modern home or atomic ranch.

For the front door, keep it simple and modern. Go plain with a pop of color, interesting mid-century door hardware and a large mid-century door escutcheon. Or buy a Crestview Door. I'd suggest using a color that pops and mid-century modern door knobs on a Crestview Door as well (as evidence by my front door above).

For the garage door, they suggest a color that matches the main color of the house or the trim in order to make the garage door look like it's part of the house. For Eichler garage doors they recommend vertically grooved wood, which were original of Eichler houses. A vertical grooved pattern could look good on any mid-century modern garage door .

It's a pretty simple rule of thumb: make the small door pop, make the big door look like the house.

Mid-Century Modern Butter Dish

We switched back to real butter in our house, for a variety of reasons I won't bore you with. The end result being, now that our spread didn't come in a tub, we needed a butter dish. I'm of the belief that no detail is too small in our atomic ranch, so I went on a search for the right mid-century modern butter dish.

I put a spending limit of $10 on myself, because, it's a butter dish, not something that I'm going to proudly display on my mantel. That's when I found out that butter dishes fall into three categories: white, clear and expensive. I was going to just get a standard white butter dish and forget all the silliness but then West Elm put their owl butter dish on sale. So I got the yellow one.

I think it'll make a nice addition to the kitchen and fit the mid-century modern look we're going for.

There were a few other butter dish contenders:
The Buddah butter dish

The Le Creuset butter dish in cherry

I think any of these butter dishes could fit nicely into a mid-century modern kitchen.

Vintage Views: Uptown Modern

If shopping vintage stores in Austin, you're likely to bump into me at Uptown Modern. It's one of my favorite vintage stores in town. It's where I bought our Broyhill Sculptra desk and a few other great finds. Today on Vintage Views, we talk with Jean Heath, owner of Uptown Modern and 20+ year veteran of the antique business.

Tell us a little about Uptown Modern.
Uptown Modern opened in 2007 and specializes in taking wonderful but worn mid-century pieces and restoring them. We refinish the wood, fix the drawers and legs, re-upholster the fabric — whatever it takes to rejuvenate the piece. I love being able to rescue a piece of furniture and giving it another lifetime of use. We focus on home furnishings and decorative accessories almost exclusively.

How did you get into the mid-century furniture game?
I started in the antique business about 25 years ago by collecting, then reselling vintage costume jewelry. Over the years, I've done hundreds of antique shows across the country and have rented spaces in numerous antique malls and shops in the Austin and San Antonio area.

Does Uptown Modern have a focus or specialty, or do you buy/sell anything mid-century?
I've specialized in many genres over the years, from estate jewelry and antique lighting to garden/architectural pieces and primitives, and now mid-century furniture and accessories. About 10-12 years ago I began focusing heavily on mid-century furniture and accessories. I love the clean, uncluttered look and beautiful lines of the mid-century style.

Uptown Modern recently moved. How do you like the new location? How is it different than the old store?
Uptown Modern moved to 5111 Burnet Rd. because our old building was sold to build an apartment development. We were very comfortable there and were distressed to leave the space. However, we now feel the move was a blessing in disguise because the new space fits our needs so well.

We’re in one large building — which is important for a furniture store [note: Uptown Modern’s old space was two building and an outdoor area] — it has the right look for our mid-century furniture and it's open and airy. We're slowly adding improvements to the outside (a new owl mural on the south wall and a fabulous planter box) as well as the inside. It's a work in progress with many improvements to come in the next year.

You're still on Burnet, is there a reason you stayed on the same street?
We were thrilled to find a building to rent so close to the old space. While we looked in absolutely every area of Austin for the perfect space, we were lucky to find it right down the street. It was the best combination of space, look and location. Since Burnet Rd. is booming with new construction projects and because it has a reputation for having a variety of furniture stores, it was a good fit for us.

Where do you find most of your furniture? How often do you get new things in?
I travel thousands of miles a year to buy estates (I rarely go to estate sales) in the Texas and the Midwest and shop at large antique shows and flea markets in states from California to Florida, from Minnesota to New York. For those trips, I usually drive a cargo van pulling a huge trailer and come home with a lot of items, which makes the trip more cost effective.

In addition, I buy from individuals who have a piece to sell and middlemen, a.k.a. pickers, who sell to me on a regular basis. They know my buying tastes and habits and can usually predict what I will buy and for how much. They often find items to sell to me at estate sales, consignment stores, thrift stores, garage sales, etc.

In short, I do whatever it takes to find around 30-50 items a week to provide the essential merchandise for Uptown Modern.

Care to give away any of your shopping secrets?
Daily we field the question of, "where do you get all of your stuff?" It is something absolutely everyone wants to know — I think they're hoping there is one specific, secret warehouse that antique dealers know about and go to for those one-of-a-kind rare finds and constant supply of vintage goods.

The truth is that I have many shopping sources and don't do most of my shopping at any one of them. In order to find a good quantity of quality vintage items, antique dealers or shop owners have to have a variety of ways to get items to sell. Since everything is vintage and not available by ordering from a factory, merchandise has to be found one piece at a time at venues in many places. The truth is, finding good vintage items is time consuming and takes persistence and planning.

The next time your spending a weekend exploring vintage stores in Austin, make sure you hit Uptown Modern.

Uptown Modern
5111 Burnet Rd.
Austin, TX 78756

Sunday: from 12pm-5pm
Monday-Saturday: 11am-6pm

Broyhill Sculptra Manga Dresser for Sale

There's a Broyhill Sculptra Manga dresser for sale on Etsy. It has a bit of damage and discoloration, but it isn't often that you get a chance to buy one of these rare pieces.

Modern Houses of the World

Here's a vintage book I'd love to add to my library, "Modern Houses of the World" by Sherban Cantacuzino. There's 160 pages of photos of mid-century homes and floor plans by Frank Lloyd Wright, Richard Neutra, Paul Rudolph and many, many others. Rudolph's Milam house in Ponte Vedra Beach, FL is the house on the cover.

Dulux Mid-Century Paint Colors

This vintage Dulux paint card has a pretty nice mid-century color palette.

And some of these brighter colors, like the Salad Green, which seems more teal than green, could easily fit into a mid-century modern color palette.

The card is from the late '50s or early 60s, so you can start to see the shift from the lighter mid-century colors to the brighter, bolder mid-century modern colors.

Amanda Visell Posters

I've been a fan of Amanda Visell for a while and I have some of her art in my house. She's started making some really cute posters that would be perfect for any mid-century modern nursery.

Posters for girls to show them they can do anything:

And posters to build better boys: