If someone was to ask you what’s your home decorating style, how would you answer? Could you answer with confidence and ease? Or would you feel uncertain, answering, “I really don’t know?”
It’s nothing to feel embarrassed about, as many of us don’t have a clear sense of what our decorating style is, or ever felt the need to identify one. Sometimes we have a sense of what we like: “Oh, it’s sort of modern and minimal.” Or “It’s eclectic and globally-inspired.” Well, if you’re unsure of your interior design style, we have some helpful information about it.
With that in mind, let’s explore several interior design styles:
Below we describe several interior design styles so you can discover which style resonates with you. This is helpful information to know for many reasons: to help you select and purchase items that would achieve a certain style, to know how to ask for help in a home décor store, or if you were to hire an interior designer at some point.
Do you like classic art pieces? Antique elements and symmetry? How about dark wood paneling and built-in cabinetry? Traditional decorating relies on classic furniture pieces, symmetrical arrangements, and rich color schemes. Most traditional homes have a very neutral color palette with accents brought in with artwork or floral arrangements. The stress is on matching furniture sets, consistency, and symmetry, so this might not be your style if you like to have the freedom to mix and match.
Modern Style (or Mid-Century Modern Decor)
Do you prefer less ornamentation and clutter? Intentional asymmetry? How about clean lines, geometric patterns, open floor plans, and materials like chrome or glass for a streamlined, sleek look? Well, modern might be for you. Modern interior design came on the radar in the early to mid 20th century. With modern interiors, décor is kept minimal. They tend to have minimal accessories and instead use art as the main décor. It’s common to see bold colorful accents in art and furniture in a mostly neutral space.
Contemporary Home Decor
Often confused for modern, there are similarities between the two, such as open floor plans and spaces, straight lines, and metal and glass pieces. Where they differ is that contemporary style is more fluid and incorporates current trends and styles, so it’s evolving and embodies the present moment. If you like to create a fusion of styles from different time periods by adding a contemporary flair, then this is a good style for you.
Typical contemporary furniture shows exposed legs and clean lines to give a light and airy feel. It’s common to see materials like metal and glass used because of their light-reflecting properties. In addition, neutral color palettes are the most common for contemporary design with textured fabrics to create interest and luxury.
Eclectic Interior Design
As it’s called, eclectic is for the free-spirited person. This is an intentional approach to décor that’s all about variety and contrasts. There’s lots of room to play with trends and styles, building a cohesive “mix” that might appear random but actually works together to create an attractive and lively space.
If you like to layer your décor and create a look that blends old and new, neutral and colorful, refined and rough, then eclectic is a fun way to go. It can take a bit more practice to create the right balance with an eclectic style, so having a motif or theme to work within a room or space helps to bring the style together.
Under eclectic style, there are offshoots like Bohemian or Flea Market/Second Hand or a more Global-Inspired style.
Other Home Decor & Interior Design Styles to Consider:
Shabby Chic, Vintage, & Rustic Decor
Besides the styles above, there is Shabby Chic, which plays with vintage furniture that’s often distressed, floral patterns and textiles, and has a rustic, French country look that’s very feminine. Or there’s Minimal for people who follow the philosophy, “less is better.” This style tends to be contemporary with an emphasis on lots of open spaces, neutral colors, and simple, functional furniture and décor.
Beach, Spanish, & Farmhouse Styles
If you love the beach and an easy-breezy vibe, there’s Coastal or Beach style. Southwestern if you favor warm colors that evoke the American desert and décor that’s Spanish- and Mexican-inspired. How about Rustic or Farmhouse or American Colonial, for those who want to bring elements of history, nature, and the coziness of the hearth and earthy materials.
As you can see, there are many kinds of styles, many of which borrow elements from each other. Hopefully, this information offers a starting place for you to explore a style. Take a look around your home and see if one of these styles describes your space. Or maybe you want to take your home in a new direction, with a new style?
The Happiness Rule of Home Decor
Remember, when it comes to how you decorate your home, there really aren’t any rules except one very important one, “the happiness rule”: decorate your home in a way that makes you happy.