Steps to modern interior design

When done correctly, the modern interior look can be anything from elegant and classy to funky and quirky. For instance, you can enjoy a bright and colourful living room, a clean and stately bedroom, and a lavishly decorated kitchen while still employing the most important factors of modern interior design for all three spaces.

1. NO CLUTTER

First rule of modern interior design: keep it simple! But don’t opt for just a simple room with four walls and a sofa. Bring in some décor pieces to accentuate the space, but keep it as uncluttered as possible. 

And be sure to keep all necessary items (books, electronics, keepsakes… ) out of sight by hiding them in a cabinet or closet, or placing them into built-in storage spaces like floating shelves or bookcases.

2. CLEAN, STRAIGHT LINES

The interior styles that came before the modern one used heavy carvings and ornate decorations. Modern interior design is meant to be the antithesis of those. That is why most components of modern design, from the furniture to the shape of the rooms, includes clean, straight lines with no additional detail. 

Take note of these elements which can be found in many modern spaces worldwide: 

  1. Oversized tiles with rectified edges 
  2. Sanded wood floors that minimize the grain

3. USE METAL

Chrome and stainless steel form big parts of modern design. Chucking out traditional metal details (like wrought iron) opens up the door for clean, polished metals. 

Thus, don’t be scared to bring in chrome or stainless steel for your furnishings, like table legs, exposed parts of a chair’s frame, or even kitchen islands. Chrome can be found quite extensively in homes via faucets, doorknobs, lamps, etc. 

4. FORM FOLLOWS FUNCTION

Those clean lines and minimal accessories of your modern home should not only be simple, but also functional. Although this can vary greatly from room to room, the main aim is that it should be easy to access and use various items in a space. 

For example, the clean and straight lines of a modern kitchen must provide ample surfaces for food prepping via countertops and/or an island.

5. LOTS OF OPEN SPACE

An open-plan layout is ideal for the modern home, but of course this is not always possible. However, there are other ways in which you can create the appearance of open space via colours, fabrics and furniture.

For instance, keep windows coverings that are light in colour and airy in feel to create an open feel in the room.

6. BOLD COLORS

A neutral colour palette is always advisable for modern spaces, but often primary colours are used as accents to help break up those whites and greys and provide focal points. But remember that these colours, which can help add character to a room, are often introduced sparingly, and rarely used as an all-over wall colour. 

Some prime examples of using bold accents in your modern home can include:  

  1. Abstract wall art 
  2. One piece of furniture in a striking colour like a burgundy leather sofa  
  3. Some strong-coloured scatter cushions  
  4. A single bold-coloured throw rug 
  5. One accent wall (i.e. in fresh green that stands out from the remaining cream walls)

Easy design tips to remember when decorating a room

Learn interior decorators’ foolproof design formulas to make your living spaces a little more beautiful.

FOLLOW THIS THROW PILLOW EQUATION

To accent your couch, place two 20-inch-square pillows in a matching bold pattern in the corners. Overlap them with two 16-inch pillows in a coordinating solid color. Add one lumbar pillow with a subtle pattern (like a pinstripe) for balanced design.

HANG ARTWORK AT THE RIGHT HEIGHT

Most people hang artwork too high. Place a piece so its bottom is only three to eight inches above furniture—lower for large pieces and slightly higher for small pieces. When there’s too much space between furniture and a painting, the eye rests on the void, blank wall between the two pieces.

REARRANGE THE BOOKSHELVES

Organize 60 percent of books vertically and 40 percent horizontally on the shelves. This creates balance yet spontaneity (and shows off the back of the bookshelf if it’s lined with a decorative fabric). Stack horizontal books lower than vertical ones: If the vertical books are 12 inches tall, place three to four books horizontally up to four inches high. Add green plants to soften the bookshelf, but avoid flowers, which can look cluttered and distracting.

CREATE SPACE WITH THE RIGHT MIRROR PLACEMENT

Mirror, mirror, on the wall: What is the best placement of them all? Centered at about 57 inches high, experts say. This is an easy, strain-free eye level for most people. To create the illusion of more space, mount a mirror opposite a window to bounce light.

FOLLOW THIS GO-TO COLOR SCHEME

When choosing a color palette, assign 60 percent of the room a dominant color, 30 percent a secondary color, and 10 percent an accent color. In a classic room setting, this may translate to designating walls the dominant color, upholstery the secondary color, and a floral arrangement or pillows the accent color. If you have a nice view outside, frame it by painting the interior window trims a dark color.

10 of the best decorating tips of all time

Some things, simply put, are never finished. In the hopes of helping you decorate savvily for all the rest of your live long days, we went ahead and rounded up the greatest design tips and tricks in our arsenal.

1. Mount curtains high above your windows
The closer to the ceiling, the grander the room will feel.

2. Hang art pieces right at eye level
Aka 57 inches off the ground.

3. Station pretty baskets around the house
Three cheers for strategically placed clutter catchalls.

4. Style decorative objects in odd numbered groupings. 
Use the “rule of three,” people.

5. Layer your light sources
Task, ambient and accent: Layers = warmth.

6. Always, always make your bed
Nothing says “I don’t care about my home” quite like a duvet cover crumpled on the floor.

7. Use rugs to separate zones
Voilà: Insta-dining room in your open-concept kitchen.

8. Think of produce as decor
Fruits and veggies in a bowl make a gorgeous centerpiece in a pinch.

9. Make big statements in tiny rooms
Powder/laundry rooms + brazen wallpapers are always a good idea.

10. Fresh flowers, always
And fresh water too (no murky green business, thanks).  

Key elements of a farmhouse-style kitchen

The laid-back charm of farmhouse-style kitchens provides a welcome antidote to the go-go-go pace of modern life. By incorporating just one or a few hallmarks of farmhouse style, you can bring the easygoing ambience into even the most urban of abodes. Below are four key elements to consider integrating into your kitchen.

1. A BUTLER SINK

Also known as Belfast sinks (and yes, they did originate in the capital of Northern Ireland, several centuries ago), these basins became popular for their extra depth. You can easily bathe a tot or a midsize dog in one. The exposed apron of a sink made of ceramic or enamel instantly adds an old-fashioned utilitarian appeal.

2. RICHLY GRAINED WOOD

Counters, shelves, and even tables made of of wood have become a rarity in contemporary kitchens. And while cabinets are still commonly made of wood, they’re often given a glossy paint finish that obscures the beautiful grain. In farmhouse kitchens, richly figured wood adds an integral organic warmth.

3. A POT RACK

Pot racks are proof that new doesn’t necessarily mean improved. As built-in kitchen cabinets gained popularity, pot racks—suspended from the ceiling, hanging from a wall, or freestanding—became considered déclassé. During the past few decades they’ve made a comeback, however, as people realized how much easier it is to grab a skillet from a hook than to rummage in an overcrowded cabinet for one. A simple iron or copper rack instantly imparts farmhouse style to a kitchen, especially when the pots hanging from it are cast iron or copper.

Décor trends for spring and summer

From fashion to design, color, and more, it seems like trends come in and out of style before we get a chance to enjoy them. And while fads may be fleeting, they are a marker for great style, often living out—to some degree—longer than their time in the spotlight.

BOUCLé

We are seeing this pop up more and more in great upholstered pieces and from our favorite fabric showrooms. This great fabric adds a dramatic texture and turns a drab piece into something a little more exciting. Also, it is so cozy!

LAYERED LANDSCAPES

A layered landscape in the scale and height of our furnishings is in in 2019. We look for a standard 18” seat height in key seating pieces and try to provide accompanying accent tables and lighting that are scaled appropriately. Lamps that are tall enough to cast light over a shoulder and taller cocktail tables add to a heightened and more refined environment.

FEMININE TONES

Colors we see in for 2020 as well are blush, dusty pink, and bronze. Warm colors and feminine tones for on the walls and dashes of soft pinks to break up expanses of taupe or neutrals will instantly update a tired room.

FLORAL FABRICS & WALLPAPER

The traditional beauty of floral patterns, either abstracted or straight up chintz, will be the pattern to use.

BOLDLY PATTERNED BACKSPLASHES

Simple, monochromatic kitchens have had a good long run, so we will be gravitating toward making a little more impact in their kitchens, whether that’s with bolder color choices or graphic tiles. Either way, I predict we will be seeing more pop and punch in kitchens!