In your career as a designer, you tend to struggle to find your true interior design unique style that differentiates you from other designers. Its especially hard because there are so many different styles to choose from, and you can’t focus on one style at once. As a designer, you are constantly growing and learning new things, and your style changes from year to year, or even from project to project. To find your own unique style takes times and lots of practice and experience, but that’s what all designer strive for in their career.
Because there is a huge variety of styles, to list all styles and talk about them will take more than ten blogs, so instead, I will briefly introduce you to the 10 most commonly known styles in interior design. One of those styles could be yours, or a combination of two or more.
To me, classical style is all in the details. Classical style is very broad, and has many sides to it. It can be most known as the style that is refined, developed, and rich in details. The furniture is the main focus in this style, it is well carved and inlaid with lots of details. The leg of a chair, for example, can have so many details and curves. Decoration is very important. Even the walls are decorated. Classical interior design is based on order, symmetry and balance. A primary element in classical style is the use of a focal point around which visual balance is achieved. The color palette common to classical interior design style is often inspired by nature. Cotton, canvas and velvet are some commonly used materials in classic interiors. Natural flooring of wood, stone or marble works best in the classically styled environment as they relate well to the natural color schemes used. The key identifying feature of the classic style is symmetry. Columns are also a feature of classic design.
Vintage interior design is all about creating a sense of charm and history through old diverse pieces. By adding antiques, collectibles, flea market finds, and estate sale items you can develop a vintage atmosphere. Vintage interior design is about embracing the things of the past and enjoying them just as they are by repairing or refinishing them. Excellent places for sourcing vintage finds include flea markets, estate sales, salvage shops, and antique stores.
In modern interiors, colors are balanced and warm. Common materials are wood, wood veneer, and leather. Furniture is much more simpler; with clean and strict edges. Walls are usually decorated with a simple painting or a simple shelving unit. Modern Style design is clean-lined, and focuses on function rather than form. Modern style avoids the excessive accessories and decorative elements seen in many other styles. Some people feel that modern design is too simple, harsh or cold, however when well designed, it can promote a sense of calmness and simplicity to your home. It maximizes space and create the impression that a room is larger than it actually is, which is a great choice of style for small spaces. Minimal textures and bold geometric forms, neutral colors accented with a single bold color along with polished finishes and asymmetrical balance are key identifying features of modern style interiors.
In Interior Design, even though the terms modern and contemporary are often used interchangeably, there is a small difference between the two styles. Contemporary interior design means trendy looks that are in style at any current moment, while modern interior design refers to the specific geometrical, clean-lined style called modern. Contemporary interiors are comfortable and welcoming without being cluttered and dark. The key identifying feature of a contemporary style interior design is line. Lines are used everywhere. Each piece stands out as individual and unique. Smooth, clean, geometric shapes are essential for contemporary style furniture pieces with upholstered furniture usually in black, white, or another neutral tone. These pieces should be simple and uncluttered, without curves or decoration. With contemporary interiors, less is more. Go basic, bare, bold, and use unique and individual furniture.
Simplicity is using a space with minimum objects and furniture. The concept of minimalist design is to strip everything down to its essential quality and achieve simplicity. Minimalism simplifies living spaces to reveal the essential quality of buildings and conveys simplicity. Pieces are either geometric shapes – square, rectangular, round, but the surfaces are clean, with no scenery or details. The idea is not completely without ornamentation, but everything is as reduced down to a stage where you cannot remove anything further to improve the design. The basic geometric forms, elements without decoration, simple materials and the repetitions of structures can represent a sense of order and essential quality. The movement of natural light in minimalist buildings reveals simple and clean spaces. This style is a form of extreme accuracy; nothing is too much, and without heavy backgrounds.
Urban interiors feature nontraditional home materials and design features, often including objects that are more traditionally used in an industrial sense. The Urban style sees the use of steel and metal, bare concrete, exposed beams and unfinished surfaces. Often random, non functional objects are included in Urban interiors to create an outdoor or industrial atmosphere. The main function of urban interiors is to create space, sometimes in surprising ways.
Country style interior design is cozy bearing the resemblance of cottage style. There are many various culturally different country style designs that have the features of the time and style that was traditional to those countries. Each type of country style has taken characteristic features of the culture it was used in. Country is relaxed and comfortable, and incorporates many floral patterns as well as stripes and plaids. Natural light wood, such as oak, is used alot. Large furniture pieces often dominate a space, with the walls often decorated with a variety of art pieces, accessories or other objects. Country style often creates a warm and rustic feeling to a space.
Rustic is a very natural style. Wood is the main material used in this style. Rustic is basic, with rough details. Elements of furniture/lighting (chandeliers) can be from wood tree trunks, logs, and branches. Rustic Style is mostly found in mountain vacation homes.
Retro style is a mix of old styles and new forms, or new forms with old materials and finishes. It uses bright and bold colors, and oversized furniture. Retro interior design can be described as modern, fun, and entirely unique. The key identifying feature can therefore only be described as an old style with a modern twist. It is the style of ’50s, ’60s or ’70s. The design has a playful approach, funny structure, and their form and the play of colors and prints is amusing and different. Retro interiors use prints with geometric shapes, lines, plaid or printed with illustrations belonging to the Pop Art style.
Hightech style is an innovative modern style, the emphasis being on furniture structure where every detail of combination is not random and it is part of that structure. Screws, rivets, wheels apparent booms, rough metal finishes, appearances bulbs are specific to this style. The finishes used are often of metal, glass, plastic and wood in small proportions and for parts we find fabric-upholstered as simple as we can – leather. The colors used are often gray, white, and black. It is a futuristic style, and uses many curves in the furniture and walls – it is very “technological;” almost unrealistic and movie-like.
Which of these styles fits your style best?