Gifts for Mid Modern Lovers
So you need a gift for someone who loves Mid Century furniture or architecture or just everything. Where to start? And what to buy? Here are some ideas for the Mid Modern Lover in your life…
For the Gardener
MCM House for the Birds
You may not be able to buy them a human house, but these darling Mid-Century bird houses add a splash of style and fun to any yard. The good people of Sourgrassbuilt.com ensure that each birdhouse is a handmade work of art on a miniature scale. Built from repurposed materials, the birdhouses are both stylish and eco-friendly. Even better: commission a miniature birdie version of your favorite MCM home. Sourgrassbuilt takes commissions, too.
And for Mid Modern Mama readers, Sourgrassbuilt is offering a special 10% discount! Just use the code NICE10 at checkout!
Mid Century Planter & House Plant
While I love vintage, this is one of those items that I tend to find new. Vintage pots can be brittle and may have suffered over the years. However, MCM-inspired planters are easy to find. Plunk a cool plant inside, and you have a fabulous gift that will live on for years.
Looking for plants and pots? Check out Piep.co! They ship all over the country, and have a BOGO special for the holidays! What a great way to share a living gift with someone even if they are far away!
Piep.co sent me a gift certificate to try out their service, and I was shocked. First of all, the plants all traveled very well — and I live in a cold climate. They arrived healthy and happy with easy-to-follow care instructions! And the pots are darling! I was very impressed. The only thing to know: pots and plants will arrive separately, so let your recipient know!
MCM-Inspired Enamel Pins
Enamel pins are all the rage on backpacks, bags, purses, and lapels. I love this retro trend, and these little charmers can be inexpensive gifts, too. I’m partial to these cuties from Rather Keen on Etsy. Their clean MCM aesthetic and sweet color scheme says Merry Christmas with a retro accent — just perfect!
A few years ago I found this blue MCM print on Etsy. It was uncut yardage, actually, and it had two pieces of this beautiful nativity. I bought them and made simple pillows from them — one for my mother and one for our home. It is one of my favorite Christmas pieces, and the yardage was very inexpensive. Even with minimal sewing skills, you can create unique, one-of-a-kind (or in my case, two-of-a-kind) gifts.
And even if you don’t sew, there are gorgeous linens available that will add character to any MCM-lover’s home.
Need help laundering something you have purchased, check out my tips for laundering vintage linens!
For the Kitchen…
I confess: I have a problem. I really love bowls. But evidently I am not alone, and there are several kinds of bowls and serving pieces which Mid Century lovers tend to covet:
If you are shopping for someone with a particular collection, there are several places to look for pieces including Etsy, Ebay, and EBTH.com. But your local antique shops may also have pieces on hand.
And if they love Mid Century but haven’t started a collection yet, help them along. A bowl is a great place to start! Personally, I love Catherineholm (hint! hint!).
Glasses & Bar Accessories
Every MCM lover should have a great set of barware. Me? I tend to go vintage for this kind of thing. Check out these darling Christmas and wintery choices from @sputnik_city-vintage, a MCM seller on Instagram. I love the snowflake glasses with carrier! And that shaker! These would make such a charming gift for your favorite MCM enthusiast.
Here’s the trick for Instagram sellers: ask what they have if you are looking for something specific. Many have booths at antique shops and more inventory than listed on their feeds. Some do flash sales at a set time. But if you ask, often they have treasures that aren’t listed. It never hurts to ask! And I have found that if they don’t have what you are looking for, they may recommend other good sources!
Tea Cups & Tea Pot
There’s nothing nicer than a hot cup of tea in a beautiful tea cup, and there’s no reason you need to purchase a whole set. Etsy is full of vintage tea cups, for example, that are sold one at a time — many under $20 for a cup and saucer set. Depending on your budget, a tea or coffee pot might also make a lovely gift. Add a spicy tea, maybe a great book, and voila! You have a fabulous, relaxing gift.
My Favorite Sources
Atomic Ranch Magazine
A subscription to Atomic Ranch magazine just makes so much sense! The photography is great. The featured homes are even better. And the prices are very reasonable. Subscriptions are available in print, digital, and combination packages.
There are so many great books about Mid Century design. I’ve collected some of our favorites in this reading list.
A few of my favorite places to find Mid Century Modern furniture and accessories:
Facebook Marketplace: I watch and wait (not always great for shopping deadlines), but every once in awhile I will find a fabulous piece at a great price
Everything But The House: this online estate sale is fantastic! They will ship anywhere, and their shipping prices have gotten MUCH better. But you may also find sales in your area. Everything sells, and the starting bid is always $1. And every once in a while I score something great for very little.
My favorite feature: saved search. If you or someone you love collects something specific, you can set a search and get a notification when something is posted.