Friday, February 24, 2012


Drinks on the patio anyone?
 The term patio culture is synonymous with the post WW11 suburbanization of america.  Patio culture, like suburbia itself, has some negative connotations in modern society...such as the lack of racial integration (definitely bad), the reliance on the automobile ( in fact suburbia owes its very existence to the auto and modern highway system), sprawling shopping centers and homogeny.

Suburban living, or the rise of the middle class, contributed to the economic boom of the mid century.  The middle class suburban house wife  embraced the modern conveniences which were suddenly available to her...dishwashers, clothes washer and dryers, vacuum cleaners and prepared foods, leaving her with more time for shopping for the household, socializing (backyard cookout anyone?), and driving the kids around.

Let's check out some pics I've found of MCM patios and landscaping.

 Suburban homeowners in the 50's and 60's wanted a seamless look between the inside and out...thus landscaping tended to be simple.

The blousy english style garden of the early 20'th century gave way to a simple and affordable style which included brightly colored flowers such as dahlias, hollyhock, carnations, and hybrid tea roses.

 A MCM landscape requires a clean unobstructed view of the house.  Shrubs and flowers were kept trimmed, neat and low to the ground.

 A mid century modern yard would not include the following: stackable concrete walls, vinyl fencing, ornate front doors (please back away from those horrible "etched" glass/plastic doors so popular today), enclosing a car port (embrace these, they are fantastic!), white lattice archways with vines growing up it (or anything else cute or country), and the ubiquitous (in our neighborhood, anyway) one piece plastic molded mail box.

Sadly, Braxton and I don't happen to live in a MCM house.  We decorated the entire inside of the house in our beloved modern style, but the outside is all country cottage, which suits the neighborhood.

What do you think of modern landscaping?  I assume most people prefer an english (overgrown) style of garden, but I'm really getting into the clean manicured look of the modern yard.  Perhaps one day.

Have a beautiful weekend everyone!


Braxton and Yancey said...

Love these clean, modern yards and homes! They rock. I especially love the concrete stepping stones. Time to rethink our landscaping? Great pics. Brax

Anonymous said...

I love your information and pictures! You have helped me embrace the architeture of my home, and instead of trying to change it, enjoy it! Thank you!

Braxton and Yancey said...

So happy to have helped!
Have a beautiful day.

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