With centuries of influences to draw from, you have a great many options when it comes to choosing a style for your home’s interior. Whether you prefer simplicity or complexity, vivacity or coolness, there is a design approach out there for you. Here are some of the most popular interior design styles for your home today.
Traditional design consists of European furniture and décor from around the 18 th and 19th centuries. It is typically ornate and symmetrical, with carefully carved dark wood found everywhere from the legs of tables to moldings on the tops of cabinets. Wood paneling is also common. Each furniture piece is typically large, impactful, and elegant. For soft textural embellishments, a traditional style room often includes velvet, silk, linen, and cashmere. The overall color scheme is neutral with bits of color added in through intricate floral, damask, or stripe patterns.
Although the label of this style may lead you to think it focuses on the newest trends, it is, in fact, a design idea that started at the beginning and ended in the middle of the 20 th century specifically. Generally, it includes an abundance of straight lines, geometric shapes, and smooth surfaces and uses materials such as metal and glass. The color palette is similarly pared-down, often following an achromatic theme, with a few bright primary color accents.
Mid-century modern design is reflective of the look that was popular in the 1950s and 1960s. It creates a retro-futuristic feeling, as designers at that time wanted to push forward and leave a lot of traditional styles behind. Gone are the complexities of yesteryear, and in their place stand simple, progressive designs representing the now (or at least what was current back then). Though mid-century modern style does also aim to declutter the space, it has a few differences from modern style. Many furniture pieces, while still sleek, incorporate more curves. An example of this is the egg chair; it’s smooth and clean, but also distinctive. The colors that mid-century modern design allows for also expanded, though it still follows the general rule of keeping things mostly neutral with a few bright colors added. You might see vibrant teal, orange, and yellow-green instead of just red, yellow, and blue.
If you want to follow what’s newest in the world of interior design, contemporary is the way to go. It is a bit less well-defined than other styles because it changes with what is current. However, you will find that it usually builds from a simple foundation, not unlike modern styles. Neutral colors are prominent, as is the use of metal. Contemporary homes aim to maintain an open, airy layout as well. But unlike the modern design, contemporary design is unafraid to put in some flair or add a few extra decorations to the mix. You might see molding on the walls alongside straightforward seating.
Transitional style is all about finding a balance between traditional and modern design. It tends to overlap with contemporary style, though the latter focuses on the ability to shift with the times, while the transitional design does not. To create a transitional interior, you should use a mostly neutral color palette to bring seemingly conflicting elements together. Furnishings can be large and soft, as they would be in a traditional home. Simultaneously, other aspects such as lampstands and tables can be square, hard, and composed of glass and metal. You can also use some accessories, including small sculptures, vases, and other decorative items.
Eclectic style embraces energy and visual busyness. It has an anything-goes mentality where you are free to incorporate all kinds of furniture, lighting fixtures, and artwork together. You can look to other styles and take the elements from them that you like the most, combining them in your eclectic interior. While the eclectic design is fun, you are also skirting the edge between making interesting rooms and just being messy. You can keep a sense of cohesion by thinking of using colors that work well together and patterns and textures that balance each other out. For instance, you might use a more muted color on a wall where you hang a collection of sundry pictures.
Similar to eclectic design, the bohemian style aims to embody a carefree spirit. It uses pieces from a mix of cultures from around the world and melds various patterns, textures, and colors. Many furnishings are vintage, and their worn-in appearance helps contribute to the beautifully nonchalant atmosphere that a bohemian interior displays. The color scheme is usually warm, with rich browns, oranges, and reds accompanied by cool, jewel-tone highlights. As for material, you can incorporate wood, metal, and smooth and rough fabrics. Bohemian style rugs cover the floor and are layered for depth and luxuriance. Plants also often dot the room, bringing it levity.
The neat restraint of minimalist modernism is popular because it ensures that your home has an intentional look. Although transitional and contemporary design affixes some more detail to it, they are not the only methods for adding some personality modern spaces. Rustic elements can offset an otherwise bland room with rough, organic personality. Natural materials such as wood and stone make up furniture in rustic style, and they are left with some sense of unevenness to represent how they appear in the outdoors. A room itself may also show a rustic design with the inclusion of wooden ceiling beams, real fireplaces, and wood flooring. Animal skins and plant-based fabrics can top it all off in the form of rugs.
What started as a functional style in European factories eventually became a fashionable aesthetic intentionally sought after by homeowners. This transition occurred when many factory buildings in the latter decades of the 20 th century became vacant. People converted them into businesses and residential spaces, and the industrial style was born. An industrial interior thus has bare brick walls, lots of rugged metal, exposed concrete, and gray and brown hues. Furniture pieces can follow suit, as is the case with iron or steel chairs and tables, though you can also seek to offset the harshness of the backdrop with a soft sofa and some artwork.
Southwestern style is another rugged route to follow when decorating your interior. It distinguishes itself with unique architectural details such as Spanish-influenced terracotta tiles and patterns drawn from Native American art. Much of the choices made in furniture are also defined by what was available to the early colonists and frontiersman that settled in what became the Southwestern region of the United States. Wood and wrought iron made up chairs, tables, lighting fixtures, wardrobes, and beds. As in rustic style, a southwestern home will also often have large wooden ceiling beams. Echoing the desert landscape, orange, red, yellow, tan, and brown dominate, with small amounts of blue and green.