7 Reasons Mid Century Modern Is An Accessible Style

7 Reasons Mid Century Modern Is An Accessible Style

For many people, the draw of Mid-Century Modern architecture and interior design is the aesthetic beauty of its clean lines, simple forms, and striking colors, but did you know that this design offers practical benefits and an accessible style for those with disabilities?

Maybe you are disabled yourself, or you are planning ahead for when you get older. Or perhaps you are caring for your elderly parents, or another disabled person will be living with you. Below, we go over the features that make Mid-Century Modern a safe, accessible style no matter your scenario.

1. Single story layouts

Many Mid-Century Modern homes are atomic ranches. The classic ranch-style home features only one floor. That means there are no stairs to climb, ensuring that the entire home is accessible to those of all ages and abilities.

2. Open floor plans

Another feature that characterizes Mid-Century Modern interior designs are floor plans that feature an uninterrupted flow of space throughout the common areas. The living room and kitchen of an MCM home are generally combined into one wide open space. In some cases, this open flow of space may extend to include sleeping areas and other parts of the house as well.

A floor plan like this allows for free and unrestricted movement from one part of the house to another. MCM interiors also tend to feature floors made out of hardwood, stone, or other smooth surfaces across which you can easily roll a wheelchair.

3. Natural light

Thanks to large windows—sometimes entire walls of windows—the interiors of Mid-Century Modern homes are typically bathed in natural light during the day. At night, the glow from the moon or streetlamps can also help illuminate the interior.

Those who have difficulties seeing in low light conditions will be able to navigate rooms more safely and find what they need with greater ease thanks to this design feature.

4. Roomy furnishings

Mid-Century Modern chairs and sofas usually have a low profile that sits close to the floor, along with extra seat depth. That means they are a bit roomier than average.

Having that extra space can help you sit in a comfortable position, which may be a relief if you need to seat yourself a certain way because of pain issues, for example.

Getting in and out of low-profile seats may also be easier if you are transferring to and from a wheelchair.

5. Simple, uncluttered spaces

Did you know that every year, one out of four people ages 65 and above fall? A common safety precaution recommended to help prevent trips and falls is to create a clean, clutter-free environment.

Mid-Century Modern décor doesn’t need to be completely minimalist, but to achieve the right look, you need to lean toward simplicity.

So, just by giving your home a Mid-Century Modern makeover, you are making it safer to walk through.

In addition, it can be easier to find what you need when your house is not filled with piles of junk. So, for those with memory problems, this could be an additional benefit.

6. Easy maintenance

Keeping a Mid-Century Modern home clean can require less work than keeping other styles of houses clean. You can quickly and easily sweep the hard floors with a broom, which takes less time and effort than vacuuming carpeting. A simple decorative style also makes it easy to dust off surfaces.

7. Connection with nature

People with disabilities may face obstacles in accessing some outdoor environments, but research shows that spending time outdoors can provide physical, social and psychological benefits.

Mid-century modern homes frequently feature beautifully landscaped outdoor spaces, along with the integration of indoor and outdoor living through spacious patios and large glass doors and windows. These features make it easy for occupants to enjoy fresh air and greenery right at home.



Originally published in Atomic Ranch
Text by Kye Cardinalis
Photos by Jim Brown

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