Monday, March 12, 2012

New Year, New Blog!

New URL:

Apologies for the lack of updates in recent months. Work and various real world dilemmas have been occupying all my time but that's about to change.

I was recently forced to move my Cinebeats blog over to Wordpress. To make my life easier I decided to transfer all my blogs so I could manage them better and keep track of everything in one place. You can now find Mid-Century Living at it's brand spankin' new location on Wordpress or you can just follow this link to Mid-Century Living's new home.

I've got a lot of material for future posts so I'll be updating the new blog regularly. I've also just opened an Etsy shop that's been in the planning stages for a couple of years so the new blog will also serve as a news portal for the shop where I can post updates and other information.

I hope everyone who follows this blog will follow Mid-Century Living to Wordpress. I've just updated the new blog with a slide show featuring images from a 1964 Sears catalog that I think you'll enjoy. Hope to see you there!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

The Cliff May Mondavi Estate

One of the big local news stories that I've been keeping tabs on this year is the selling and buying of the beautiful Cliff May designed Mondavi  Estate here in the Napa Valley. Cliff May was a west coast based architect best known for being the "Father of the California Ranch House." My own home has elements of Cliff May's design ideas and May's influence can be seen all around Napa. He designed one of the most amazing wineries in the area for Robert Mondavi in 1966 and he also designed the Mondovai's home in the '70s.

The spectacular Mondavi Estate was just sold at auction where the starting bid was $13.9 million dollars. I don't know who the lucky well-heeled new owner is but I hope they appreciate May's design and preserve the home's original style. Below are some photos of the Mondavi estate along with a video highlighting the natural beauty of the Napa Valley and Cliff May's design.
Mondavi Estate
Mondavi Estate
Mondavi Estate
Mondavi Estate
Mondavi Estate
Mondavi Estate from Sheldon Good and Company on Vimeo

Recommended Links:
- Mondavi Estate Auction Site
- Napa newspaper article about the Mondavi Estate auction
- Official site of the Mondovi Winery
- Cliff May, The Father of the California Ranch Home

Friday, December 23, 2011

Happy Holidays!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Modern Christmas Tree Mobiles

Happy Holidays! I recently picked up a vintage holiday craft book called Christmas Magic by Margaret Perry, which was originally published in 1964. Inside there are lots of fun & creative ideas for holiday themed crafts. Some of my favorite projects in the book are these modern style Christmas tree mobiles (or 'mobile Christmas cards') that you can make out of construction paper or any pliable materials you like depending on how durable you want them to be. I thought I'd share the instructions, which should appeal to anyone trying to decorate their home with some mid-century style holiday cheer.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Charles & Ray Eames: The Architect and the Painter

The new documentary, Charles & Ray Eames: The Architect and the Painter premieres nationally Monday, December 19th on PBS - American Masters. If you didn't have a chance to see it in theaters this year, this is your opportunity to catch it on TV. More information about the film can be found at the PBS website.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Ice Cube on Eames

In case you haven't heard, Southern California is currently playing host to Pacific Standard Time: Art in L.A. 1945 - 1980. This ambitious six-month long exhibition celebrating mid-century design and post war art opened in late September and runs through March 2012. More than 60 institutions in Southern California are participating in the event, which will also include a ten-day Performance and Public Art Festival in January. Their latest promotional video features rap artist Ice Cube (confession time - I think 'Straight Outta Compton' is one of the best records of the '80s) who briefly talks about studying architecture drafting before he turned his attention to music and discusses L.A. landmarks. Ice Cube's sincere appreciation for the design of Ray and Charles Eames is apparent in this great video.

If you happen to live in Southern California or are planning to visit there soon stop by the Pacific Standard Time: Art in L.A. 1945 - 1980 website for information on where you can see some of the exhibits and attend events.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Brighten Your Life With Colors You Like

Brighten Your Life With Colors You Like (1962)

A few months ago I picked up a great little book that was published by Pittsburgh Paints in 1962. It goes into great detail about how to use color schemes in your home, how to choose paint colors, etc. and it's been an eye-opening read. It's changing the way we're using color in our place, which I plan to write about in more detail soon but in the meantime I thought I'd share a few of my favorite images from 'Brighten Your Life With Colors You Like.'

Dining/Living Room (1962)
Dining Room (1962)
Kitchen (1962)
Kitchen (1962)
Kitchen (1962)
Kitchen (1962)
Living Room (1962)
Living Room (1962)
Bathroom (1962)
Bedroom (1962)

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving - 1963 Style!

In November of 1963 most of America was in mourning. President John F. Kennedy had just been assassinated and thoughtful citizens around the country were in a state of shock. People were undoubtedly trying to understand what exactly had happened in Dallas on November 22 and how it would effect their world. But families still gathered together and cooked meals.

Above you'll find some Kellogg stuffing recipes and Turkey cooking tips (click on the image to see it full size) taken from a 1963 issue of LIFE magazine. They suggest you use Kellogg's Croutettes, which I don't think are being made anymore but obviously you can substitute them with other types of croutons or bread cubes.

1963 isn't a year that a lot of people would like to remember but I think it's interesting to look back and see what people might have ate during that bleak November. This November there is obviously a lot of unrest and uncertainty in the country once again but I want to wish everyone a very Happy Thanksgiving! I hope you're all able to enjoy a good meal with family and friends.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Movie: The Love Machine (1971)

I just reviewed a film called THE LOVE MACHINE (1971) for TCM that was recently released on DVD and I couldn't resist sharing a few screen grabs here. The film has some great interiors that I know a lot of vintage furniture and design enthusiasts will love. It's based on a novel by the best-selling author Jacqueline Susann who's best remembered today for writing "Valley of the Dolls." I spotted some Burke chairs in the film that were inspired by Eero Saarinen designs for Knoll as well as some nice glass tables, op art wallpaper, etc. If you're interested you can find my review of the film at TCM's blog, The Movie Morlocks. In the meantime, I hope you enjoy the images!

Friday, October 28, 2011

1958 Halloween Costumes

I recently came across these great ads for Halloween costumes in a Sears catalog from 1958 and had to share. Click on the images to see the full size versions. Love that robot and space "Satellite Joe" man!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Halloween Apples

Found these old recipes in a copy of the Better Homes & Gardens "Cookies and Candies" book originally published in 1966 and wanted to share them. I haven't tried these recipes myself yet but caramel & candy apples were one of my favorite things to eat on Halloween night when I was a kid. Enjoy!

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