4 Things You Should Know About Midcentury Modern Architecture

“The houses had open floor plans and giant sliding-glass doors, which encouraged people to go outside and be healthy. In a traditional home, the window height was 4-5 feet, and you can’t see out as a child. With these walls of glass, children became engaged and open-minded because the environment stimulated the senses in a different way.” Sian Winship (president of the southern California Chapter of the Society of Architectural Historians)

What makes this architecture so special? Oh man…so many things…but mostly the forward thinking design that captures nature and seamlessly flows into it.  

  1. Flat Planes: Geometric lines, angles. Flat roofs are common, though the more modern ranch-style had gable roofs.  
  2. Large windows: Sliding glass doors and expansive panes of glass allow light to enter the room from multiple angles… with purpose and well thought out design.  
  3. Elevation changes: Small steps between rooms or partial walls, cabinets of varying heights create depths in space.
  4. Integration with Nature: Outdoor views and using color that reflects organic materials. Multiple access points to get outside.  


What are the negatives of owning a Midcentury Modern? Natural materials such as wood has to be maintained. In addition, flat roofs don’t allow water to flow as freely off and leaks can be common with this type of home. Keeping the roof free of debris is one way to prevent this from happening. Also, having so many windows that need to be cleaned! Small price to pay if you ask us!  

Brick&batten would love to help bring your midcentury modern back to life! From the color palette to the accents that make this architecture its best, we have you covered. Learn more about our virtual exterior design service, and get started on making your MCM exterior shine today.