A Simple Guide to the Most Popular Interior Styles and Their Features

modern furniture for living room

The topic of home decor and interior design is a never-ending story. Modern urban, mid-century, traditional, … and the list of styles can go on and on. With such a diverse range of options, it can be pretty difficult to decide which one will work best for your space. Especially when you aren’t very familiar with their distinctive characteristics.

Even though there’s a large number of interior styles, a few of them stand out as the most prominent and most commonly found in modern homes. So, if you want to keep your space up-to-date, here’s a quick rundown on the most popular ones right now and their features.

Modern Urban Style

The modern urban style is perfect for sophisticated city dwellers. It’s the ultimate for cosmopolitan living, combining hints of contemporary, modern and industrial influences. As a movement in interior style, it started in the 20th century with the expansion of urban living. Nowadays, it’s always on-trend thanks to its enviable emphasis on comfort. This style is especially great for an industrial loft or a modern apartment overlooking the rooftops of the city.

The range of urban contemporary furniture features clean and crisp lines and geometric shapes. It usually comes in a neutral colour palette, especially in black, white and grey. Regarding the materials, we can say that it’s made of “cold” materials, including light-coloured wood, metal, steel, glass and even plastic. And when it comes to the used, leather, vinyl and faux leather, PU leather, and microfiber are the most common ones. This modern style is all about creating a soothing and serene, yet attractive and luxuriously decorated home featuring a lived-in sense of charm for everyday life.

urban contemporary furniture

Source: archdaily.com

To complete your urban decor, you can introduce accessories including plants and botanicals to keep the space light and refreshing. This is also a quick and affordable way to bring in colour. You can also bring in additional hits of colours by using accent pieces like petite stools and side chairs in deep tones (greens and blues) or by selecting decor pieces like coloured throws and pillows for your sofa.

However, if you choose this style, you should keep accessories to a minimum, since this style is all about simplicity. Hence, if you’re a fan of simple and modern design at the same time, the urban contemporary furniture and decor style may be your ideal option.

Traditional Style

The traditional style is the ideal home decor style for those who love classic form and enduring beauty. It reproduces the classic decor with European and French flair. This style emphasises elegance and simplicity. The principal features this style is known for are:
▪ deep colours and wood tones;
▪ lavish decorative details;
▪ luxurious materials;
▪ variety of ornamental elements;
▪ impressive craftsmanship.

Traditionally styled homes have a distinct visual cohesiveness in colour palette and materials. Traditional furniture features classic silhouettes, with curved lines and claw and bun feet. When it comes to the colours, there’re deep wood finishes, rich shades of brown, cherry, espresso, merlot, black and white. Tables, chairs and sofas are usually made from dark woods and are ornately detailed with carving and curvatures on their legs.

The windows are similarly designed with scalloped edges and fringe accents. The traditional style puts accents on decorative details like mouldings, panelling, intricate embellishments and throw pillows.

living room with traditional style

Source: thespruce.com

Scandinavian Style

Scandinavian design is marked by cleanness, simple lines, minimalism and the use of earthy materials. What makes it especially aesthetically pleasing is the lack of clutter and light ambience. It favours bright and airy spaces.

Wall-to-wall carpets are rarely seen in homes designed in Scandinavian style. Instead, hardwood floors are used in every room except the bathroom. The floors everywhere in the house are light in colour, as is most of the backdrop in the home. So, even the walls are typically either white or light shades of grey. Blue textiles are used on sofas, rugs and bedding in order to bring a splash of colour into the home. Scandinavian can also be combined with rustic design to give the space some extra warmth.

Transitional Style

The transitional design style is a blend of a variety of different styles to create a timeless look that’s all its own. More precisely, it is a mix of both traditional and contemporary design. Therefore, transitional furniture can feature straight and sophisticated lines like those found in modern furniture, or have rounded lines with ornate carvings like in traditional pieces.

This is a distinct vintage-influenced modern style with some specific pieces such as the Eames chair and tulip tables The furniture is generally warm and inviting with comfortable upholstering made of leather, linen, chenille or velvet. About the colours, you’ll see dark browns, taupes, tans and creamy whites. The transitional style uses intricate decorative details and throw pillows.

living room with transitional style

Source: overstock.com

Mid-Century Modern Style

Mid-century modern style is the decor style which is known for the most iconic furniture pieces  in modern design. It’s characterised by simplicity and functionality. Homes designed in this style have a seamless flow from the inside to the outside thanks to sliding doors, picture windows, skylights and patios.

The furniture is entirely unique, featuring statement pieces like marshmallow sofas and egg chairs. The walls are often dressed up with graphic wallpaper featuring bold geometric patterns and funky colours. This style is defined by minimalist silhouettes, sophisticated lines, handmade and hand-painted elements. The main material the furniture is made of is wood, sometimes with natural wood grain patterns. The fabrics and textiles are in solid colours which range from neutral to bold.