4 Tips to Decorating Your Mid Century Modern Space on a Budget

We have had some really big events and opportunities over at Metropolis Real Estate Solutions lately.

We are beyond excited to have opened our brick and mortar office at 610 Bumby Ave., Orlando, FL 32803. The location is absolutely ideal for us! It is located on the borders of some of our favorite mid century neighborhoods: Audubon Park, Colonial Town, the Milk District, and it is in close proximity he to College Park. All of these areas were developed during the 1940s through the 1960s and all of these homes have features and design elements that we crave!

Of course, we have wound up in a boxy, mid century, freestanding building that I have watched cycle through business after business since my childhood. It seems as though it was usually some sort of a salon. I can remember getting my haircut there with my grandmother when I was about 10 or 12. For so many reasons, it just feels like home to me.

One of the most exciting aspects of the new office space was that we got to furnish and decorate it from the ground up, so to speak. We wanted a space to reflect our personal design sensibilities and hopefully those of our clients. Because our income is not entirely disposable, this had to be done on a budget. We scavenged a few pieces of furniture from home but the majority was purchased on a budget.

Here are my tips and tricks for furnishing your home in a mid century modern style for less.

#1- Don’t be afraid of craigslist! Craigslist is the most widely used resale website in Central Florida. Because you’re dealing with local sellers, you don’t have to pay a premium for heavier items to be shipped. Because mid century modern design doesn’t appeal to everyone, not all sellers realize the value of their goods. A couple of evenings with an iPad and your favorite series on binge mode will likely results in several good fines. Don’t be afraid to negotiate on price and be ready to jump if you find something that you love.

#2- Trust your local specialty retailers. We have several great shops in town that have carefully cultivated and restored quintessential mid century modern pieces. One or two key and quality items can propel your design look beyond DIY and into the realm of “who is your designer?”  These guys have got to turn over inventory to keep their shops looking fresh and relevant. You can very often catch them just before, during, or after a sale. And you can always feel good about supporting a local business.

#3- Shop eBay for the smaller stuff and accessories. We have always had fantastic luck getting barware and retro modern accessories from eBay. Estate companies, individuals and boutique shops all market their goods via eBay as it opens the window of sales opportunity to a world wide audience. This can have a secondary benefit of keeping prices low as they are generally well marketed.

#4- There are tons of reproductions on the market these days and if you are looking for things like lighting, carpeting, kitchen stuff, etc. websites like overstock, Wayfair, West Elm and my favorite Overstock.com will often have new or reproduction items that carry a great impact at a low cost. And quite certainly, don’t overlook IKEA. They are chock-full of sleek, modern, DANISH design!

Below are a couple of photos of the almost finished product of our new office space. These were taken once we moved all of the furniture in but we hadn’t yet hidden the cords for the t.v./coffee station, hung artwork, etc. We spent approximately $2700 on all of the furnishings. The rug is from IKEA, the two butterfly chairs were my grandparents, the black couch is a craigslist find, the turquoise lamps were given to me by a mid century modern picker who said she saw them and thought of me immediately; all I had to do was re-paint them. The bookshelves, tulip table, tulip chairs, and arc lamp were also from craigslist. I built the kitchen from IKEA and bought all of the glassware for the bar from IKEA as well. The orange coffee cups are from the dollar tree. The Salterini chairs and end tables ( they will probably not stay because their scale is too big) were also from craigslist and of course the sheepskin came from IKEA.

By keeping it simple and channeling the retro gods, I feel like we were able to pull together a very polished luck with a price tag that was far more palatable if we had paid a professional to design it for us.

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Megan Johnson Judd


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Adam Judd

(407) 282-1600 *1

Cert Res RD 4142

Megan Judd

(407) 282-1600 *2

Cert Res RD 3035