How To Style a Mid-century Modern Hutch

how to style a midcentury modern hutch

Hi Friends!  I’ve really been crushing on mid-century modern furniture lately.  So when my husband brought this hutch home, (with a matching buffet) I new I had to have them!  I recently shared on IG how my husband restores and sells furniture.  And how every now and then he brings pieces home that he thinks I might like or for me to style them to sell.

I knew I would use the buffet in my living room to replace this Duncan Phyfe buffet/tv console that I recently painted.

I love the way it looks with it’s clean lines.

The hutch, however, sat in our living room for a couple of weeks, untouched.  Then last night, I decided that I either needed to figure out if I was going to be able to make it work in my dining area, or stage it to sell.  Well, really the process was one in the same.  I styled it how I would, if I were to keep it, and since my heart didn’t go pitter-patter after I was complete, I knew it wasn’t right for our space.

how to style a midcentury modern hutch

The scale was off.  The ceilings in that area are high, and this piece is small, to fit in those cute little 1950’s ranches with the low ceilings.  Plus, I didn’t want my home to look like we stepped into a time capsule!

I decided that I should let it go, (hey, can’t keep them all!), but I wasn’t really sure what a mid-century piece looked like styled now a days.  I searched Pinterest and google and could only find pieces styled very, very minimally, or completely over done, complete with multi colored Pyrex dishes and all!  So, while styling the hutch, I thought it might be fun to document the process (using what I have on hand) to dress it up.

So, I’m going to let the pictures do most of the talking:

You can’t go wrong with a mini cake stand, topped with fresh fruit or greenery.  Here I used some fresh limes and one of my Family Dollar succulents.  I added some pretty crystal glassware and some white bowls to flank the cake stand.

On the second shelf I used a small white platter as the centerpiece, and then decided to bring some color in with these pretty blue plates.  I grabbed one of my mini snake plants that I re-planted in a little ceramic sugar dish to add some depth.

On the top shelf, I added this beautiful scalloped edge brass bowl to the center, filled it with little ceramic spheres (also blue and white) and flanked it with small white octagon plates.  While it can certainly be considered complete here, I decided to go a bit further, due to the height of my ceilings.

I added this Chinoiserie vase, and as always the rule of thirds or at least decorating with odd numbers is more visually pleasing, so I added 2 small milk glass bowls, one with a cute little fern.  What you cant see, is that the fern is propped up a little on a small box, to vary the heights. I added another small succulent to the body of a little vintage milk glass lighter.   Now to some, it may be fine just like this, but I like to step back and see what I feel is missing, and for me, it was balance.  So I added 2 crystal decanters to the other side.

The decanters added the height and balance, but because they are crystal, they didn’t add enough visual weight.  So I snatched this painting (made by my daughter) off of my living room gallery wall and leaned it on top.  Yesssss!  I loved it . . . But still . . . there was something missing.  You see that space in between the painting and the plant?  It needed something.  So I shopped my living room gallery wall again and grabbed this paint stroke piece I created and layered it in front of the other painting.  BETTER!!!! But it still needed something, lol.  I grabbed this little sunburst mirror to layer in front of that painting and that’s when I finally felt it was complete.


how to style a midcentury modern hutch

Press play 🙂

When you sit down at 7am to write a “quick” blog post about styling a hutch, and 5 hours later . . . “Ta-Da!” 😩😄 #lifeofablogger #linkinprofile #ontheblog . . . #homedecor #interiordecor #interiorstyling #shelfstyling #homedecorblogger #makinghomebeautifulonabudget et #rhodeisland #midcenturymodern #midcenturymodernfurniture #rhodeislandblogger #hutch #homedecorblogger #midmod

A video posted by Fearfully & Wonderfully Made (@fwmadebycarli) on

So what do you think?  What would you have done differently?  How do you approach styling furniture?  I’d love to hear your thoughts!

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  1. Erin Marshall
    March 14, 2016 / 8:49 pm

    I loved it Carli. So sad to see it go, but yeah if the scale is off, then you cant make it work. Looks great how you styled it.

    • Carli A
      March 21, 2016 / 4:06 pm

      I was too! Thank you Erin for your sweet comment!

  2. Linda Terry
    April 6, 2016 / 7:22 pm

    Wonderfully styled Carli!

  3. Mary Kelso
    May 19, 2016 / 2:22 pm

    Thank you! I have also been looking for a styled piece like this to get ideas, and there are a lot of photos of really badly done or not done at all. My husband is inheriting a hutch like this from his grandmother and I love it, but wasn't sure how I would make it pretty. Love yours.

    • Carli A
      July 21, 2016 / 5:38 am

      Oh I'm so glad this was helpful! I hope yours turned out great!

  4. Carli A
    October 15, 2016 / 12:02 am

    Someone left this comment and I accidentally deleted it:"Hi there, I just recently bought a hutch almost identical to this (it says Garrison Furniture on the inside of the drawer) I was thinking of fixing it up and selling it, how much did you sell this for? I'm obsessed with mid-century furniture right now! " We ended up selling it for about $250 I believe. And I'm loving mid-mod furniture right now too 🙂

  5. Alaya
    October 15, 2016 / 11:25 pm

    Love how you styled this! I looked so great in your home, from the pictures! But I'll take the $250 too!

  6. February 2, 2022 / 1:30 pm

    I have this exact hutch, and you’ve inspired me that I can give it an update without painting it.

    My dad gave it to my mom as a gift in 1968 after a family loss. It’s very special to me.

    • madebycarli
      February 3, 2022 / 8:49 am

      Oh that makes me so happy! So glad you were able to find inspiration here!

  7. Kelsey K
    December 6, 2022 / 10:08 pm

    Beautiful! What are the dimensions of this piece?

    • madebycarli
      December 7, 2022 / 9:08 am

      Hi Kelsey, thank you! U fortunately I no longer own it.

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