Have you ever looked around your home and wondered what exactly spurred you to buy that canvas hanging on the wall of a random landscape you can’t identify? Or maybe that off-white leather ottoman that you’ve never been able to keep clean since you got it home? Often we buy articles for our home based on how much we love them in store, rather than how much they will compliment a particular interior design style or your home in general. These purchases often make it difficult for us to us to identify what style our home is.
So if you are interested in discovering what theme your home is, or maybe you’re considering redecorating, we outline the popular interior design themes of today and what key elements could help you achieve the look at home.
Contemporary interior design was first popular in America in the 50s and early 60s but has remained favourable over time as it refers to what styles are current and happening now. This is a great go-to style for beginners to interior design as it works with most, if not all, homes and design styles. Another advantage of the style is that it is often comfortable and welcoming, allowing it to be applied to a range of spaces from offices, retail outlets and lofts.
To achieve this style in your own home concentrate on the key feature of line. This can be applied through the use of bold colour blocks, high ceilings, square edged furniture, rugs, bare windows and geometric shapes in art pieces. Concentrate on filling each room with furniture in black, white or another neutral tone. These items should be simple, either with straight lines or beautiful curves. If you are unsure, remember that less is more with this style! Focus on bare, basic, bold and structural design elements that offer a unique edge to each room.
The concept of nautical is generally inspired by all things associated with the seaside, making it a popular choice amongst Australian homes due to our strong beachy culture. Yet, don’t be mistaken, you don’t need to live on the coast to create this interior design in your home. This nautical theme, often referred to as ‘coastal chic’ captures impressions of the sea, sand and ships to create a contemporary look that engrosses relaxation and comfort.
While it is not limited to, a nautical theme is just perfect for those living along the coast or those with a summer holiday home. Take inspiration from homes in the popular American seaside destination, The Hamptons, which showcase an abundance of houses with white and navy themes with gold accents. When this colour palette is paired with beach themed accessories such as lighthouses, old rope, oars, stones, seashells and boat figurines, this style comes alive. When it comes to flooring consider white washed or mid-toned timber floor boards, neutral carpet or even a classic style tile as a feature. For walls, paint them a basic white or a cool blue tone which will be in-keeping with the rest of the colour palette.
3. Art Deco
The art deco style represents a period originating in Paris from 1908 to 1935. This style initially worked its way through Europe and now is a style recognised globally. Known for its geometric flair, this style features rounded fronts, mirrored accents and sleek lines. Another obvious giveaway for this style is an abundance of wood furniture with chrome hardware and glass tops. These characteristics, which were modern and sleek for their time, helped develop a new style for a new era post World War I, based on glamour and elegance.
Having withstood decades this style is likely to be around for a while, so to achieve this look at home, start by using colours sparingly. Focus on black as the main or background colour, complimented by colours such as green, red, grey or white with silver or gold accents. Art Deco usually features extensive lighting including ceiling lights, floor lamps, table lamps and wall lamps, all of warm tone, usually orange or yellow in colour. Lastly, intentionally overdecorate using bold and colourful patterns, which may seem slightly over the top, but work together to compliment the overall style.
This style is typically categorised by its lavish, whimsical and decorative elegance which utilises a range of colours from rich Mediterranean hues to softer, more neutral shades. Typically, one colour of fabric is repeated throughout the space, accented by rich details. This is particularly evident in decorative windows, typically featuring dramatic layers of curtain matching the colour theme of the room. Generally, furniture includes French royal style antiques and heirlooms, providing an ornate feel to each room.
In keeping with this style, there is the option to take the colour palette bold, or keep it pale and more understated. A bold move means utilising rich colours such as peacock blue, teal, emerald green and shades of red. In contrast, a decision toward pale means neutrals of white, taupe, soft grey and green with touches of gold and silver, helping to add an element of luxury. In your home, a go-to style touch is decorative wallpaper in typical French designs which can be used as a feature wall or down hallways.
Opt for striking vintage furniture in fabrics such as velvet, brocade, silk and lace to get the look of luxury. Apply finished touches such as delicate chandelier lighting featuring crystals, beads or feathers and don’t forget to fill your home out with flowers, a key feature of a French home.
Industrial interior design is popular for decorating lofts, apartments and older buildings converted into living spaces. All you need for the style is to create an illusion of rough surfaces with materials that suggest industrial elements. The simplest way to show roughness is to leave some walls or surfaces unfinished. Consider exposed brick or concrete, unfinished wood and stainless steel, before hanging large pieces of art throughout your home. In addition, to some rough metal elements that will create an industrial atmosphere, it is important for include old industrial looking objects that are made from steel, different metals and wood.
In your home concentrate on a colour palette that involves warm, neutral tones or shades of grey that work well when mixed with white to create a crisp, clean look. These things should be worn down or have a salvaged or recycled appearance. For flooring, we like polished concrete which can work to be as rough and patchy as you want it to be, or even timber or stone flooring. When it comes to furniture, you should find big comfy sofas and large scatter cushions to compliment ‘industrial’ artwork. Finally, a stand out industrial style feature is indoor plants which would to inject life and color into the harsh industrial environment.
6. Modern Minimalist
Becoming popular in the late 1980s in New York and London, minimalist interior design focuses on simplicity, using a clean streamlined approach. The concept of modern minimalist interior design was inspired by the idea of Zen philosophy which concentrates on the principles of light, space and function which, when applied to a home, can create a more relaxed and peaceful surrounding. The approach uses the bare essentials within a home and each item has its own purpose.
Minimalist design is chic when put together well, with emphasis on clean lines and open spaces, this design approach allows you to enjoy simplicity at its finest! Following a neutral colour palette, use polished surfaces, strong geometric shapes and asymmetry to achieve this look. Utilising white or blue lighting, create large open spaces with minimal furniture, including the essentials only. To achieve this avoid elements of decoration, concentrating on the repetition of materials and structures to represent order. But take note, storage is key to achieving and maintaining this minimalist style so ensure that your home can provide this extra room before opting for this style!