Living with Danish modern furniture

by Barbara Schwab


When I was young girl my father worked on the design of the IBM pavilion for the Brussels world fair, 1958. During his travels he purchased several Danish modern furniture pieces made of solid teak one was a Hans Wegner coffee table, dining table, nesting tables, and several Kay Bojesen’s wooden monkeys.

Three kids grew up in our house and today the Danish modern furniture sits in my parents home looking as beautiful as the day it arrived. My parents dining table is now in my brother’s home, they raised 2 children using it. We grew up experiencing beautifully designed furniture, a curated collection of modern design, antiques, Shaker cupboards, beautiful contemporary art, and ceramics.

The first mid century modern pieces in our own home are a set of 6 bent plywood DCM Dining Chairs by Charles Eames for Herman Miller. My parents found them at a neighborhood yard sale for $25 each and asked us if we would like to have them. Over the next last 35 years we replaced a few of the metal feet and some of the rubber attachments on the back.

George and I have collected a lot more of what we love, and have discovered the beauty, comfort and practicality of the furniture designs of such greats as Han Wegner, Kofod Larsen, Finn Juhl, Arne Vodder, Greta Jalk, Arne Jacobsen, and more than I will save for another post.

Pony hide armchair made of white oak, teak veneer.

Vintage mid century and Danish modern furniture has stood the test of time, and survived among families with children. I am enjoying the resurgence of its popularity, the furniture will continue to be used, loved and lived with.

Some of the pieces we have collected sustained bumps and bruises over the years, but the beauty of the designs and the quality of the workmanship make them worth investing in. The fun part is adding the little touches that re-invigorate them into vintage modern furniture with today’s style. That’s what we like to do in our home and at MidMod decor.