Our topic this month is one that comes up frequently when talking with new clients and nearly everyone that’s not in our business. And since the concepts are super simple to understand, just have a read below and you’ll be talking like a pro in no time! We should also point out that these are our definitions and examples from our portfolio – they’re NOT from a textbook. And no doubt others in the design field will have their own interpretations, but here we go…
So how would you define your favorite interior design style?
The traditional style is the style of yesterday. Any historic look is considered traditional, like Louis XV, Victorian, Mid-Century, etc. This category also includes all ethnic styles too, like any Japanese, Spanish, basically any style from a specific culture. The key words here are classic and timeless, but it’s always fun to mix and match period styles too.
We love working in the traditional mode, especially when it’s appropriate to the architecture. For example, check out this room in a Cape Code style home: The photo shows part of a bar area we created and while all the elements here are new, they’re inherently traditional; Bold striped wallpaper, a classic club chair and the Regency-inspired console table really makes a statement in a comfortable way we think.
The contemporary style is the style of today. This style is the easiest to spot because it’s all around us! Actually any look that’s popular today will fall under this category… The hallmarks here are current, timely and popular. And the downside is that this style is always the first to look dated and we think most contemporary spaces have a shelf life of about 10 years or so.
Our example is a kitchen and seating area that really defines contemporary: It’s got today’s building materials like stone and hardwood floors, cherry cabinetry and some fun mid-century inspired furniture pieces. All of this creates a current, hip and comfortable style and enhances the architecture of the home.
The modern style is the style of tomorrow. This one is kind of tricky to define, but we characterize modern as a look that employs a truly innovative use of form, function and materials. And while that definition might sound daunting, it’s not – Just think of it as a different and creative approach to what you usually in everyday life and what could be the look of the future.
Our example is a lobby area in a condo building and what makes it modern is the function and materials we used: Instead of a traditional lounge area, the wall segment here is made of concrete and what we call the “seating area” is deceiving – is that a table or a bench? We wanted the user of the space to make that decision!
The transitional style is a combination of any or all of the above styles. It’s basically any look that mixes and matches the old, the new and the innovative – And it can really be a lot of fun too. The key words here are adventurous, eclectic and unexpected. The trick here is making many different elements come together as one cohesive space.
Check out our example of this transitional dining area: There’s a contemporary wood wall treatment and chandelier, vintage art deco dining chairs and that’s a French sculpture piece that we turned into a table base. We think the space is elegant, comfortable and eclectic in its overall look and feel.