Mid-Century Design: 8 reasons why we love it!

Mid-Century Design: 8 reasons why we love it!

Mid-century design has captured the hearts of design enthusiasts worldwide, and it’s easy to see why. Because from its innovative designs to its enduring quality, vintage design continues to inspire and captivate. Thus, we at De Vreugde Design are passionate about sharing the love for this iconic era. Here are eight reasons why design holds a special place in our hearts and homes.

1. Innovative Designs

Mid-century design was a breeding ground for innovation in the world of furniture. Designers pushed boundaries and as a result introduced original and creative ideas. As a result, they transformed the way we see and use our living spaces. Each piece tells a story. Therefore, vintage design is a true testament to the power of innovation.

2. Iconic Designers

The genius behind mid-century design lies in the hands of visionary designers. For example, the iconic duo Charles and Ray Eames or the innovative Arne Jacobsen. Also Pierre Paulin, Gerrit Rietveld, Cees Braakman and many others. Their designs showcase the brilliance of creative minds. They revolutionized the way we think about furniture and interiors. It’s history! These designers remain iconic and influential today. Thus making their original pieces only more special!

3. Clean Lines and Organic Forms

One of the defining characteristics of mid-century design is its emphasis on clean lines and organic shapes. Say goodbye to excess and embrace simplicity. The furniture and decor feature crisp edges, gentle curves, and fluid forms that certainly exudes a sense of harmony and balance.

4. Natural Materials

Mid-century design celebrates the beauty of natural materials. From warm woods like teak and walnut to natural fibers like leather and rattan, these materials bring a touch of nature indoors, creating an inviting and cozy ambiance.

5. Proven Quality

Mid-century design stands the test of time, both in style and durability. Furniture that still looks impeccable after decades is proof the craftsmanship and quality materials used. Investing in mid-century pieces ensures that you’re bringing home furniture that is guaranteed to last for decades to come.

6. Versatile Functionality

Functionality takes center stage in mid-century design. In other words, every piece is carefully crafted with a purpose in mind. From multi-functional storage solutions to modular furniture. Mid-century design maximizes space and adapts to the changing needs of modern living.

7. Bold Colors and Patterns

Mid-century design isn’t afraid to embrace bold colors and patterns. Vibrant hues inject energy and personality into interiors. Also, geometric patterns and abstract prints add a playful touch to furniture and accessories. Pop-art and Space Age style are perfect examples!

8. Enduring Influence

Decades may have passed, but the influence of mid-century design remains strong. Its timeless allure continues to inspire designers and homeowners alike. Embracing mid-century design means becoming part of a rich design legacy that has left an indelible mark on the world of interiors.

With its innovative designs, iconic designers, enduring quality, and versatile functionality, mid-century design has earned a special place in our hearts. Therefore, here at De Vreugde Design we invite you to explore our collection of mid-century pieces and experience this charm for yourself!

Browse our new arrivals and bring the essence of mid-century design into your own home. Let us help you create a space that celebrates the beauty of this iconic era while embracing modern living!

How Plastic Became a Modern Material

How Plastic Became a Modern Material

Plastic design has become an icon for the mid-century era. It’s the period in which designers began experimenting with new materials. They wanted to create innovative furniture designs that would change the world of design forever! One of those materials was plastic. As the Space Age movement took hold, plastic became the material of choice for designers. It offered a sleek, futuristic style that embodied the spirit of the times.

Some of the most popular mid-century plastic designs include the “Componibili” modular storage units, Joe Colombo’s medicine cabinet and the colourful “Casalino” chairs. Above all, the use of plastic made these designs so innovative and popular at the time. However, they continue to be sought after today for their playful designs and bright colors.

Kartell: Pioneers of Plastic Design

Italian furniture maker Kartell was one of the first companies to embrace the use of plastic in furniture design. Founded in 1949, Kartell began producing plastic furniture in the early 1950s. For example the iconic “Componibili” modular storage system designed by Anna Castelli Ferrieri in 1969. It was an instant success, and it remains a design classic to this day!

Joe Colombo was an Italian designer who was active in the 1960s and early 1970s. Colombo showed interest in creating flexible living spaces. He sought to incorporate futuristic designs and technology into everyday life. Moreover, he was a key figure in the Space Age movement. Collectors and enthusiasts of mid-century design are still actively looking for Colombo pieces to this very date! For example, his “4801” chair was the first chair fully made of ABS plastic.

Also, in 1968, Joe Colombo designed the “Boby” trolley, which is considered one of his most famous designs. This trolley presents a series of drawers and compartments that users can configure in different ways. Therefore the trolley has been used in a wide range of settings. From example a home office to hospital wards, and has become an icon of mid-century design.

The Casalino Series

However, that’s not all! Also an iconic series of plastic furniture from that time was the “Casalino” series. Designed by Alexander Begge for Casala in 1970. Stackable chairs fully of made plastic was completely new at the time. They were the very first! They are colourful and comfortable, easy to use with a minimalist design. Therefore they quickly became popular! The Casalino series represented a new era in plastic furniture design! It proved the versatility and durability of the material.

The Versatility of Plastic

Also, Plastic allowed designers to create furniture that was light, durable, and easy to make. It was an ideal material for mass production. Moreover, it offered designers a range of options in terms of color, shape, and texture. This allowed them them to push the limits of design and experiment with new forms.

The plastic pieces embody the optimism and excitement of the post-war era. As a result, plastic furniture became a symbol of the modern age. From the sleek, futuristic designs of Kartell to the playful, colorful chairs of the Casalino series! Above all, plastic furniture captured the imagination of designers and consumers alike.

In conclusion, plastic furniture played a significant role in mid-century design. It forever changed the way designers thought about furniture production! It allowed for a range of exciting, innovative designs.

If you’re a fan (just like us), we have a wide range of plastic furniture pieces in stock. You can check our stock here. From iconic Kartell designs to the Casalino chairs, our collection showcases the best of mid-century plastic design.

Pastoe: A History of Dutch Design Excellence

Pastoe: A History of Dutch Design Excellence

Pastoe, a Dutch furniture manufacturer, is known for creating innovative designs and high-quality craftsmanship. Founded in 1913, the company has a rich history of producing furniture that is both functional and appealing. In this post, we will take you through some of it’s most iconic designs!

Founded by Frits Loeb, who in 1913 decided to produce chairs for his shop himself. This was done in a small craft carpentry factory. The “Utrechtsche Machinale Stoel- en Meubelfabriek” (UMS) grew very quickly. After WWII, UMS made a new start. They changed their direction towards more modern design. They designed their clear collection to fit into various decors and situations. This “passe partout” principle insired the new name for the company: Pastoe.

Cees Braakman and the Japanese series

Cees Braakman is one of the most iconic designers in the history of Dutch furniture. Born in 1917, Braakman started working for his father’s furniture company Pastoe in 1945. He quickly developed an interest in modern design and found himself influenced by the ideas of the De Stijl movement. This movement emphasized the use of geometric shapes and clean lines.

One of his most iconic designs is the U+N series, which became commonly known as the “Japanese series”. Introduced in the 1950s, the sleek and minimalist style of the modern pieces where highly innovative at the time. A departure from the ornate and heavy furniture of the past, it sumbolizes a new era of modern (Dutch) design.

Braakman’s impact on the world of design cannot be overstated. He was a pioneer in the use of new materials and was instrumental in bringing modern design to the masses. His work inspires designers and furniture enthusiasts today, and collectors around the world highly seek his designs.

The below photos are all from the iconic “Japanese” series!

Rob Eckhardt’s creative designs

Another notable designer for Pastoe was Rob Eckhardt, who created some of the company’s most sought after pieces. He studied at the Gerrit Rietveld Academy in Amsterdam, where he developed a keen eye for geometric shapes and minimalist designs. He worked for Pastoe in the 1970s.

Eckhardt designed several iconic pieces during his time at Pastoe. One of his most famous designs is the “Pouffe Garni” easy chair. It features a low, square seat on a minimalist base and has optional ball shaped feet. This chair perfectly exemplifies Eckhardt’s minimalist approach with a most interesting creative touch. It features clean lines and a simple, yet elegant, design.

Another notable design by Eckhardt is the “Groeten uit Holland” chair, which translates to “Greetings from Holland.” Inspired by the playful shapes of the tulip, this typical Dutch design is a furniture version of a Dutch postcard! It embodies the charm of the lowlands.

Exhibitions around the world frequently showcase Eckhardt’s designs. Design enthusiasts all over the world still seek Eckhardt’s highly collectible pieces. They are timeless, modern and unique.

These photos feature some of Eckhardt’s designs.

Made to Measure

The Made to Measure series, introduced in the 1970s, was a modular system that allowed customers to customize their furniture to their exact specifications. The series was a reflection of the growing trend towards individuality and self-expression in the 1970s, and quickly became one of Pastoe’s most popular offerings. The Made to Measure series was also a reflection of the company’s commitment to quality and craftsmanship, and helped to cement its reputation as a leading manufacturer of modern furniture. Vintage Made to Measure series always have an interesting personality, as apart from their appealing style they also hold a little personal touch from their previous owners.

An iconic Dutch manufacturer

Pastoe is undoubtedly one of the most interesting furniture companies in the world, with a rich history spanning over a century. Their quality craftsmanship, innovative design, and functionality has resulted in timeless pieces. Designs that are still sought after and popular today. With iconic designs by celebrated designers such as Cees Braakman and Rob Eckhardt, Pastoe has left an indelible mark on the furniture industry. There is so much more to share about this incredible company, and we invite our readers to browse through our website to stay updated with any new and exciting Pastoe finds that we get.

Exploring Artifort

Exploring Artifort

Artifort is one of our favourite Dutch furniture manufacturers. Not only ours, but they are popular worldwide! They have been creating innovative designs since 1890. Known for their mid-century pieces, Artifort has collaborated with renowned designers. For example Pierre Paulin and Geoffrey Harcourt. They created iconic pieces that were very popular at the time...And are still popular today! In this blog post, we’ll explore the history of Artifort, their design philosophy, and their popular mid-century pieces.

History of Artifort

Founded by Jules Wagemans in Maastricht, the Netherlands, Artifort began as an upholstery company, specializing in chairs and sofas for homes, offices, and churches. In the 1920s, Artifort started collaborating with modernist designers, and their focus shifted to creating innovative furniture. By the post-war years, Artifort had expanded their range to include armchairs, lounge chairs, and sofas.

Artifort’s design philosophy is rooted in functionality, comfort, and aesthetics. The company believes that furniture should reflect the times, and their designers have always been at the forefront of new trends and styles.

Iconic Mid-Century Pieces

Artifort’s mid-century pieces are iconic and timeless. Here are some of the most popular mid-century pieces from Artifort:

  1. The Concorde Chair. Designed by Pierre Paulin in 1965. The Concorde Chair is a futuristic design that reflects the optimism of the 1960s. Its streamlined shape and sculptural curves create a sense of movement. The comfortable seat and back make it an inviting piece to sit in.
  2. The Lounge Chair designed by Geoffrey Harcourt in 1967. A classic mid-century piece. The chair’s curvaceous shape and clean lines make it a timeless design. Its comfortable seat and back make it a perfect choice for any interior.
  3. The Mushroom Chair: Designed by Pierre Paulin in 1960, the Mushroom Chair is one of Artifort’s most recognizable designs. Its low profile and rounded shape make it a playful and inviting piece. Its comfortable seat and back make it a great choice for relaxation.
  4. The Penguin Chair: Designed by Dutch designer Theo Ruth in the 1950s. The chair gets its name from its playful and elegant shape, which resembles a penguin with its wings spread wide. The chair’s distinctive shape and playful design make it a statement piece that adds personality and character to any room.

Artifort has worked with renowned designers to create innovative pieces that are both functional and beautiful. Therefore heir timeless designs that are still popular today. If you’re looking for furniture with a touch of Dutch design, Artifort is definitely worth exploring. You can find our stock of Artifort items here!

A brief history of sleeping sofas

A brief history of sleeping sofas

Sleeping sofas. You gotta love them! A practical solution for smaller interiors of for those who expect regular stay-overs. They are often not thought of as style-icons, but we at De Vreugde Design know that they absolutely can be! For example, we L-O-V-E the designs by Martin Visser, where the sofa can be turned into a bed simply by pulling out the seat. We are proud to regularly have them in stock! However, his design was not the first ever sleeping sofa. They actually have quite the history!

Ancient History

The very first sleeping sofa (that we know of!) dates all the way back to ancient Egypt. In the early 20th century, British archaeologists found one in the tomb of Toetanchamon. This means it must have been from the 14th century B.C!


In 1899, the sleeping sofa became popular with the masses when the American Leonard C. Bailey got the patent for his foldable bed. The main focus on that was to create a bed that was easy to move and it became very popular with campers. It became known as the “hide-a-bed”.

Small spaces

Another famous design is the so called Murphy Bed, designed by William Lawrence Murphy as the “In-A-Dor”. It’s a sofa that can be folded into a cabinet.

During times of financial crisis in the 1930s, the American Bernard Castro invented a sleeping sofa like the ones we know now: the “Castro Convertible”. Folding out the seat of this sofa would turn it into a bed. Designed for small incomes during times of crisis, this was the start of a development where the sleeping sofa would evolve into a true interior fashion statement!

Style icon

It was in the late 1950s / early 1960s when Martin Visser came on the scene and changed the face of sleeping sofas forever! The BR02 sofa, as pictured below, quickly turned into a timeless design icon that has remained loved up tot his very date. It’s revolutionary converting system allows a very quick transition from sofa to bed. All that you have to do is pull out the seat and voila! Together with it’s minimalist, modern design we will never stop loving this sofa.

As big enthusiasts of Dutch design, we regularly have the Martin Visser sleeping sofas in stock! Are you interested in one? Feel free to contact us, or have a look at the latest stock info by clicking here!

Cool Collectables: Heinkel Trojan Microcar!

Cool Collectables: Heinkel Trojan Microcar!

Here at De Vreugde Design, we take pride in adding “& Collectables” to our name. Every now and then we bump into a collectable so unique, we just have to share it with you! Jan Willem has a new-found passion for so called “microcars” and has now imported a Heinkel Trojan Kabine. This unique, bright red, three wheeled car will definitely draw the attention wen it hits the road! Apart from it’s unique appearance, there’s a whole story behind this tiny car.


From aircrafts to microcars

Surprising fact: Heinkel was a German aircraft manufacturing company. founded by and named after Ernst Heinkel. It produced bomber aircrafts for the Luftwaffe in World War II, pioneering with liquid-fueled rockets and turbojet-powered aircrafts. In 1956, the company decided to go with something different: the “Kabine” bubble car. There were two models: the Kabine Model 153 (with three wheels) and the Kabine Model 154 (with four wheels). Both had 204 cc engines that were later reduced to 198 cc for insurance purposes. The production didn’t last very long. After only two years, in 1958, Heinkel stopped the manufacturing. It was continued under license. First by Dundalk Engineering in Ireland, but it was taken over by Trojan in the UK soon after due to poor quality control. In 1966 the last Trojan Kabine has left the factory, meaning the end of their production.

Struggles of a front door

One of the unique features in the design was the opening being in the front, which could sometimes be quite a hassle. Heinkel wasn’t the first one to do this, Iso Rivolta had a similar microcar: the Isetta. To avoid patent issues, the Heinkel car has a fixed steering wheel that makes it a bit harder to enter and exit the car. Another difference between those cars is that the Heinkel has a reverse gear. A lot of other bubble cars didn’t have this. Since the door is in the front,this  could be quite difficult when for example you would be facing a wall. Luckily this wasn’t a problem for the Kabine! The sun roof of the car doesn’t only serve as a nice feature for sunny days, but is at the same time an emergency exit, should the front door be jammed in collision.

Jan’s quest for a Heinkel

After finding out about microcars jears ago, Jan never stopped thinking about them. Still, deciding to really purchase one seemed like a big step. All the good cars seemed to be abroad, so there’s certain risks involved when importing one. After a long quest, Jan found a trustworthy contact and eventually took a leap of faith and bought his very own. At arrival here at our warehouse, the car turned out to be in even better condition than we could have hoped for! The upcoming month Jan will work om renovating some parts of the vehicle and at the end of October it will get it’s very own Dutch license plate. With that, Jan and his Kabine are ready to hit the road!

Are you thinking about having a microcar of your own? Or is there a different unique collectable that you are looking for? We have a big network of contacts, and can keep an eye out for you to find the perfect item. With our many years of experience, we know what the risks and advantages are when buying certain special items and will happily guide you in finding that unique piece you’ve always wanted! Feel free to contact us.