Eliminating dark corners with a floor lamp is an excellent combination of chic design and functionality, especially with mid-century modern floor lamps.
Lamps are a key element in any room, whether on a desk or as a floor decoration. However, with so many types of floor lamps, finding the proper lighting to complement the décor already in a room is challenging.
Mid-century floor lamps are well worth looking into as they work as a décor piece and give a warm glow to the surrounding area. Compared to overhead bulb lighting, these floor lamps are much more versatile in design and portability.
Featured Image | Mid-Century Floorlamp ‘Globe’ by Frank Ligtelijn, the 1960s
We will go over a few of the various features of these mid-century floor lamps that make them stand out from other lighting options. You will also find a few floor lamps to get started on your search for the perfect lights to spruce up any room in the house.
Let’s get right into it!
Now that you know a bit about the main elements of a mid-century modern floor lamp, it is time to hit the market and find the right one for you. Here are some great floor lamps with a range of design elements to brighten up any room.
1. Michele 61″ Tripod Mid-Century Floor Lamp
With a tripod base, the Michele floor lamp has all the critical elements of a mid-century modern floor lamp. The three legs give it a solid base and are made of steel, giving it an urban and industrial element. What’s more, the legs add an interesting angle to the floor lamp and make for a smooth transition into the brass-finished frame.
As for the shade, it is made of a white fabric that follows a drum style to softly diffuse light. There is also a footswitch to turn the lamp on and off, which is compatible with an LED bulb.
One notable feature of this lamp is the larger footprint and build as compared to traditional floor lamps. Hence, the base feels more solid and secure, which makes assembly that much easier. And to top it all off, there is a one-year warranty provided by the brand.
2. Lyndon 65″ Mid-Century Tree Floor Lamp
The Lyndon 65″ mid-century modern floor lamp has a minimalistic design that it pulls off well, with the material and color choices in the composition. Its construction strips the floor lamp down to the bare essentials while remaining functional, a key element in the modern style. This also helps it work in any room, no matter the type of interior design.
An angled metal shade makes it perfect to use as a reading lamp or to direct the light in a specific area. It has a muted teal finish that offsets the brass body and marble base. Both earthy elements flow together seamlessly for a uniquely designed piece.
Continuing the mid-century modern features, this lamp uses an LED bulb with a maximum wattage of 12 watts. With solid construction using high-quality, durable materials, the shade looks and feels great. Although there is no included warranty, it is not susceptible to breaking anytime soon with such a durable construction.
3. Heanor 68″ Column Floor Lamp
Following the mid-century modern aesthetic of curved lines, this Heanor column floor lamp follows a broad base that narrows in the middle, then blossoms again towards the top. While the base is made of walnut with a walnut finish to match, it uses a frosted glass shade as the crown. With such a slim profile, it is easy to place in the room as a background piece.
These types of shades in a mid-century modern lamp direct light upwards. What makes it effective is the material choice of the shade, which does not cast a sharp light, but rather a softer glow that is easy on the eyes. The floor lamp can also take up to 150-watt bulbs, which also helps to soften the light output.
Heanor includes a bulb with the floor lamp, which is able to support 150-watt bulbs. While the unit does need assembly, it is relatively minimal. However, it should be noted that there is no warranty, so if the frosted glass shade breaks, you will need to order a replacement directly from the manufacturer.
4. Swader Slim 69″ Novelty Mid-Century Floor Lamp
This mid-century modern floor lighting has an exaggerated design of multiple metal loops that make up the base. These tubes meet at the top, forming a cage of sorts around the bulb that stays in the oversized shade. With such a drastic design, it easily stands out as a conversational piece and a highlight feature of any room.
As is commonly seen in the mid-century modern style, complementary materials are a crucial feature, and the Swader floor lamp is no exception. The tubes themselves that make up the base are stainless steel with a powder coating. As for the shade, it comes in a variety of colored fabrics to control how much light it gives off.
Positioned at the bottom of the floor lamp is a floor switch that is attached to a cloth-covered wire for extra style and durability. As there is only one bulb (that is included), the light output is not considerable. However, as stated before, the lighter shade option does allow for more light to pass through, so it is recommended that you prioritize lighting over aesthetics.
5. Darrel 61″ Novelty Floor Lamp
The Darrel novelty lamp has a compact yet outstanding design, a combination of mid-century modern style and retro elements. Three metallic arms support a large fabric shade that illuminates the light upwards. As such, it draws the eye upwards along the slightly curved profile of the floor lamp.
One aspect that can be changed is the finish of the metal arms for a lighter or deeper aesthetic. It is available in either a white or vintage brown finish, so there are options to create different looks in the floor lamp.
This lamp is capable of holding two 60-watt bulbs to give off a warm light through the fabric shade and upwards. A footswitch is used to turn the lamp on and off quickly. With easy assembly and one full year of warranty, it is an excellent package if you need a couple of matching floor lamps.
6. Haywards 59.5″ Tripod Floor Lamp
Another tripod floor lamp, this mid-century modern lamp, has a walnut coating on the wooden base to give a natural yet urban feel. One feature of the tripod that adds an element of functionality is a shelf halfway on the stand. Keeping a shelf built into the tripod breaks up the clean lines of the floor lamp to create a medium base.
Furthermore, the lampshade is a drum style made of an oatmeal-colored fabric. This is a bright contrast to the deeper walnut color of the stand, which is a critical element in mid-century modern floor lamps.
One standout feature that sets this model apart from other floor lamps is the option to adjust the light level. There is a three-way switch to choose the amount of light that the bulbs give off. To sweeten the deal, Haywards includes the bulbs you will need, so once you assemble them, the floor lamp will be ready to go.
7. Reitveld Adjustable 83″ Task/Reading Floor Lamp
Bringing together industrial elements with the functional simplicity of a mid-century modern floor lamp, this Reitveld model is perfect for general or work lighting. Two matte black metal pipes sit at an angle on a flat base. A hinge at the joint allows the bulb to be brought lower or further away from the floor to provide the perfect lighting arrangement.
Additionally, the shade is made of the same matte black stainless steel material to add a cohesive look to the entire floor lamp. What’s more, the lamp is compatible with an LED bulb and has a discreetly placed footswitch for ultimate convenience, turning it on and off.
Putting this lamp together is relatively simple with such a simplistic design; there is even a one-year warranty if any parts need replacement. The maximum capacity of this lamp is 10 watts, which translates to 9.5 watts for an LED bulb. If an adjustable and straightforward floor lamp is what you need, then this Reitveld lamp is definitely worth looking into.
8. Bryce 63″ Tree Mid-Century Floor Lamp
Combining functionality and the aesthetics of a mid-century modern floor piece, this model has a minimal footprint that fits in with any room decor. Two separate bulbs on a ball socket are attached to a free-standing pole for ultimate customization for light distribution. Each bulb shade has a simple aluminum hourglass construction that is reminiscent of a mid-century modern piece.
Furthermore, the pole has a matte black finish that blends into the interior design as a background element. A switch is located on the pole to allow for easy access as well. Taking the customization possibilities a step further, you can choose whether a silver metal or brass highlight will complement your room better.
As there are two bulbs, energy efficiency was a consideration that Bryce factored in. Each has a maximum watt capacity of 60 watts, with LED bulb capability. Backed by a one-year warranty, this is one lamp that is perfect for its customization and style.
9. Deer Park 59″ Novelty Floor Lamp
Truly a unique design, the Deer Park lamp does not follow the traditional design elements of other mid-century floor lamps. For one, there is not a proper shade, per se, but rather simple globes attached to the lines that make up the lamp. In total, there are three lines made of stainless steel; a support pole, a horizontally angled line, and a parallel pole to the base.
Supporting this elegant construction of gold-finished steel, a marble base enhances the already elegant vibe of the piece. With so many sharp lines and bright elements, this model may not seem to fit in with other mid-century modern floor lamps; however, the glass bulbs and earthy tones are evidence to the contrary.
Although this mid-century modern floor piece is capable of having dimmable lights, the bulbs do not dim independently and are controlled by a foot switch. The sockets for the bulbs call for a candelabra base and have a maximum wattage of 25 watts. With such a unique design at an affordable price, this is a contender for one of the best mid-century modern floor lamps.
Mid-Century Floor Lamp Features
One of the first features that stand out in floor lamps is the base itself. As these lamps support themselves, they have lots of room for unique designs and shapes when it comes to structural support. These variations in the design of mid-century floor lamps add a lot of personality to the lamp and room.
A. Base Floor Lamps
Starting with a basic design, these medium base floor lamps are a testament to the mid-century modern style. They are simplistic and have simple lines that do not distract from the other decor in the room. Typically, these straight floor lamps have a single support structure with a foot switch at the end of the base.
An excellent example of a mid-century floor lamp is one that has a metal base. It is the perfect balance of minimalistic design with hints of modern industrial elements. The metal base is a familiar favorite among mid-century modern-style aficionados.
B. Tripod Floor Lamp
Another variant of the singular, flat-base floor lamp is a tripod base. The tripod design is a modern floor lamp aesthetic element that still has hints of the mid-century modern style.
Not only does the tripod base allow for more stability, but it can open up the possibilities for unique designs. Using various materials and lengths of legs, the floor lamps are able to accomplish different looks. There are also strategies to hide away the power cord along the legs to achieve a mid-century modern aesthetic.
C. Table Floor Lamp
Table floor lamps are similar to tripod designs, save for one feature that improves the functionality of an already versatile furniture piece. Halfway up from the tripod legs, there is a table or extension that can be used as extra storage. This inclusion of a flat surface also acts to break up the lines of the lamp to make a unique design that still follows the traditional construction of mid-century modern floor lamps.
When it comes to mid-century modern floor lamps, there are not many embellishments or detailing on the piece itself, which means finishes are more vital. Various finishes can highlight specific characteristics of the floor lamp.
For example, a walnut finish has a natural and earthy tone to it, while a gold finish has the opposite effect of adding high-quality and sophisticated elements. However, traditionally the mid-century modern palette utilizes more natural colors.
Depending on the color tones, like a white or black finish, it is easy to accomplish the mid-century modern look in a floor lamp. Combining these color finishes brings together the outdoor and indoor elements into a beautiful lighting setup.
While it may not be easy to tell the difference between contemporary and mid-century modern styles, there are a few features to distinguish one from the other.
A. Contemporary Design
In a contemporary design, the modern floor lamp is characterized by clean lines and minimalistic elements. These design elements use lots of metal and glass, focusing on present and future aesthetic styles.
A favorite choice for modern designers, the contemporary style blends pieces into the existing decor without drawing too much attention. In the context of a modern floor lamp, this means primarily patterns and minimal embellishments adorning the lamp.
Additionally, these styles of floor lamps help make a living space lively with a clean-lined design. Everything from a medium base to a foot switch style power cord is a common feature seen in a mid-century floor lamp of contemporary design.
B. Mid-Century Modern Design
Another type of style that can be found in many vintage pieces is mid-century modern floor lamps that combine form and function. This design style is characterized by simplistic and geometric elements. Smooth curves and lines draw the eye in and help to give focused lighting to the floor and work area without dispersing too much light upwards.
Many of the mid-century style elements take inspiration from the 1950 and 1960 periods, focusing on wood and earthy tones. In combination with the composition of the floor lamps, these elements make for a minimalistic design that focuses only on essentials. Any detail work or ornaments are absent on these mid-century style floor lamps.
Among mid-century modern floor lamps, there are a number of different shades available that can define the design style. While some floor lamps rely on a shade to diffuse the lights, others may have a softer bulb that does not need such a feature and has a more straightforward design.
In contemporary mid-century modern floor lamps, a metal shade adds an element of industrial qualities to the minimal design. Using metal shades makes for a versatile feature as they come in a variety of textures and colors to brighten up the design.
Additionally, a frosted glass shade is another excellent material for a mid-century floor lamp to softly diffuse lights. Not only does it make for a chic design, but it is helpful to complement the earthy elements and add a hint of modernism.
It is clear to see how the material of the shades can determine the overall aesthetic of the floor lamp. These minor details are the difference between a mid-century modern floor lamp and a contemporary style.
There are a few different bulb-type configurations that make for exciting lighting arrangements. Whether you are placing your floor lamp in a reading nook or the corner of a library, the bulb style can not only change the ambiance but effective lighting coverage of the floor lamp.
A single bulb is a traditional design for mid-century modern floor lamps as it is as minimal as possible while remaining functional. While, on the one hand, it is simple and straightforward, it is also limited in lighting coverage. Even with maximum wattage, they aren’t as bright as using multiple bulbs unless they are LED bulbs.
Beyond the singular bulb type, multiple bulbs can extend the effective coverage of the floor lamp. One common method is using three lights in place of one to create an elegant light arrangement. Placing one of these mid-century modern floor lamps in a bedroom is a great way to create a moody, relaxed environment in a room.
Whether it is in a home office or living room, the sizing of the floor lamp is a crucial factor to consider. As the light element is elevated higher than standard tabletop lamps, the height and diameter of the shade determine light coverage.
On average, most floor lamps are five to six feet in height, making the shade come up to eye level. Of course, there are exceptions as well, with some models coming in at six to eight feet. Base and shade diameters also tend to range from five to six inches, so the footprint is relatively minimal despite the tall height.
Compared to “vintage” lamps, a genuine mid-century modern floor lamp differs in terms of warranty coverage. Paying attention to warranty as insurance is a good idea, just in case a need for replacement parts arises. As they are now considered vintage, sourcing replacement parts is incredibly difficult, challenging, or altogether impossible.
What’s more, these vintage lamps tend to have faulty or loose wiring, rendering them useless in just a few months. Comparing these vintage models to mid-century modern floor lamps, which are backed by warranty, it is clear to see which is the more financially feasible option.
For one, the wiring is new and modern, so the chance of it breaking down or becoming loose is less. Additionally, if there are any issues with the unit, most sellers allow a return or refund even if there is no warranty on the model.
With that, you are now more equipped with the knowledge of picking the perfect mid-century modern floor lamp to brighten your living or working space.
Using floor lamps for lighting is an excellent choice, whether as a task light or to add ambiance to a room. Not only can they potentially improve concentration, but they are also easy on the eyes by directing light downwards.
They work in any space and will be sure to get you compliments from any guests for your refined taste in décor. Take a step into the future and get yourself one of these beautiful mid-century modern floor lamps.