Interior Design Styles and How to Achieve Them

Interior Design Styles And How To Achieve Them


In the vast realm of interior design, many styles have emerged over time, each capturing the essence of different eras, cultures, and aesthetics. This article delves into the heart of 30 popular design styles, providing an extensive guide for those seeking to elevate their living spaces and create environments that reflect their unique tastes and preferences. This comprehensive exploration of design styles empowers readers to navigate the intricacies of each approach, transforming their homes into captivating havens of self-expression and comfort.

Interior Design Styles And How To Achieve Them

From the timeless elegance of traditional styles to the bold statements of modern and contemporary designs, this article examines the distinguishing elements, colour palettes, and materials that define each of these popular interior design styles. By understanding the foundations and characteristics of these diverse approaches, you will be equipped to make informed decisions when embarking on your interior design journey. Whether you’re a seasoned interior designer, a novice decorator, or simply someone with a keen interest in home aesthetics, this article will serve as your go-to guide, inspiring creativity and helping you shape a living space that perfectly embodies your vision.

Contemporary style

Contemporary interior design is an ever-evolving style that reflects current trends and embraces simplicity, sophistication, and clean lines. As a fluid and dynamic design approach, it effectively creates spaces that are sleek, spatially simple, and enduringly stylish. This versatile aesthetic borrows elements from various time periods to craft an environment that feels both fresh and timeless.

Central to the contemporary design style is its emphasis on line and form. Furniture is characterized by exposed legs and clean, defined structures, which contribute to a light and airy ambience. Upholstery is typically done in neutral tones and natural fibres, with an absence of skirts or excess fabric. This minimalistic approach extends to the colour palette, which favours shades of white, beige, grey, and dark colours for contrast. Textured fabrics and two-tone prints often add visual interest and depth to contemporary spaces.

Another distinguishing feature of contemporary design is the use of open spaces, uncluttered layouts, and airy atmospheres. These elements are often accentuated by detailed mouldings on walls and windows, as well as the incorporation of curving lines. Moreover, the strategic use of materials such as light woods, glass, stainless steel, and metal creates a seamless interplay between form and function. With their light-reflecting properties, these materials further enhance the sense of openness and spaciousness that contemporary interiors exude.

Lighting and other decorative elements play an essential role in contemporary spaces, often showcasing abstract or innovative designs. Metallic light fixtures and installation lighting serve as statement pieces, while large abstract works, wood panelling, and artisanal pieces add further visual interest. Additionally, the use of large, dramatic plants in simple containers underscores the style’s connection to nature and organic forms.

Flooring and wall cladding are also integral to the contemporary aesthetic. Understated and simplified coffee tables, casegoods, and luxurious finishes on sofas and armchairs create a stylish dialogue between form and function. This is complemented by specialist wall cladding and flooring, which further contribute to the overall luxury modern look that contemporary design aims to achieve.

Contemporary Bedroom
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In conclusion, contemporary interior design is a dynamic and evolving style that artfully combines elements of various design periods to create spaces that are both of the moment and enduringly stylish. With its emphasis on clean lines, neutral colour palettes, and open spaces, contemporary design offers a sophisticated and timeless approach to modern living.

Traditional interior design style

Traditional interior design is a timeless and sophisticated style that draws its inspiration from classical European aesthetics, particularly from 18th and 19th-century England and France. The style is characterized by balance, symmetry, and harmony, resulting in spaces that feel calm, orderly, and welcoming. Traditional interiors prioritize quality, from furniture and fabrics to finishes and accessories, yet they tend to avoid overt displays of opulence.

At the core of traditional design are ornate details, sumptuous furnishings, and an abundance of accessories. Furniture is often crafted from dark, finished wood, such as mahogany, maple, or cherry, and features curved lines and intricate carvings. Expensive textiles like silk, velvet, linen, and brocade are used liberally in upholstery, window treatments, and cushions. Popular patterns include damask, florals, stripes, plaids, and even geometric designs, all contributing to traditional spaces’ rich and layered visual appeal.

Symmetry is a defining aspect of traditional design, with layouts often organized around a central feature like a fireplace or a prominent piece of furniture. To achieve this balanced look, consider pairing identical items, such as two occasional chairs flanking a sofa, or matching casegoods on either side of a room. The style’s penchant for straight and curved lines creates an elegant overall picture, while mid-range colour tones keep the palette understated and refined.

Accessories play a crucial role in traditional interiors, from crystal chandeliers and Persian rugs to oil paintings and floral arrangements. These elements provide a sense of glamour and depth, adding dimensionality to the space. Architectural details, such as crown moulding and prominent cornices, further enhance the classic, formal appeal of traditional design.

Traditional interior design is not only visually appealing but also comfortable and inviting. The emphasis on quality materials and craftsmanship results in spaces that exude a sense of warmth and familiarity. Whether in the form of quintessential English furniture, like the button-tufted Chesterfield sofa or the wingback chair, or European-inspired textiles and patterns, traditional design remains a classic choice for those seeking a timeless and elegant aesthetic.

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Industrial interior design style

Industrial interior design is a unique and versatile style that pays homage to the industrial working world of the past. It celebrates the raw, exposed materials of converted factories and warehouses, evoking an urban, masculine aesthetic that can be adapted to a variety of spaces. This style thrives on its rugged charm, combining functionality with a sense of history to create an edgy and inviting atmosphere.

Industrial Style Room scaled
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At the heart of industrial design lies a passion for raw materials, such as weathered wood, metal, brick, and concrete. These elements are often showcased in the form of exposed pipes, beams, brick walls, and steel structures, contributing to the dramatic, unrefined look of the space. The colour palette typically favours neutral shades, including brown, tan, black, cream, and grey, further accentuating the style’s raw and rugged nature.

Furniture in industrial spaces often features a mix of wood and metal, with a vintage or antique appearance. These pieces are functional and practical, emphasizing the utilitarian roots of the style. The open-concept layout, high ceilings, and uncluttered spaces are distinguishing features of industrial design, creating an environment that celebrates both old and new while incorporating negative space for a balanced aesthetic.

To achieve the industrial style, consider incorporating vintage light fittings, accessories, and graphic artwork, such as numbers, architectural plans, or blueprints. These elements will help to enhance the space’s rustic character while also adding a touch of sophistication. In order to soften the masculine tendencies of the style, consider introducing ample texture through oversized artwork, cosy textiles, or even colourful glassware and plants.

The industrial interior design style is a captivating blend of raw, exposed materials and functional, unpretentious furnishings. Its versatility and adaptability suit various interiors, from lofts and warehouses to modern apartments and homes. By embracing the industrial aesthetic’s signature elements and combining them with carefully chosen textures and accessories, you can create a stylishly undone space and effortlessly chic.

Minimalist interior design style

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Minimalist interior design embraces the principle that less is more, focusing on simplicity, functionality, and clean lines. This modern style, which emerged from the Minimalist movement in the 1960s and 70s, aims to create a sense of sophistication and calm by eliminating clutter and distractions. The result is an airy, spacious atmosphere that invites contemplation and relaxation.

The materials used in minimalist interiors often include glass, wood, marble, concrete, and metal, creating a sleek and contemporary appearance. The colour palette is typically monochromatic, with an emphasis on neutral shades such as white, black, and grey. However, minimalist spaces can also incorporate deliberate, restrained use of colour as accents to enliven the otherwise subdued environment.

Furniture in minimalist interiors is characterized by its streamlined shapes, simple forms, and functional design. Often, these pieces serve multiple purposes, with hidden storage or built-in functionality that maximizes space and utility. Upholstery typically lacks patterns, favouring solid colours and textures to maintain the overall minimalist aesthetic.

Minimalist Front Room scaled
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Achieving a minimalist interior requires stripping the space back to its essential elements, with a focus on clean lines and uncluttered surfaces. Reflective finishes and modern, shiny materials are encouraged to enhance the sense of openness and light. To make a minimalist space feel more inviting, consider opting for a warm neutral colour palette rather than cool whites and greys.

Minimalism is not just about visual simplicity; it also challenges traditional consumption patterns and encourages a more mindful approach to living. By carefully curating the items within a space and emphasizing the importance of negative space as much as positive space, minimalist design offers a composed and serene environment that fosters clarity and well-being.

In summary, minimalist interior design is characterized by its clean elegance, functional furniture, and a restrained colour palette. This style celebrates simplicity, quality, and a focus on essential elements, resulting in a sophisticated and inviting atmosphere. By incorporating minimalist principles into your interior design, you can create a calm, spacious, and thoughtfully curated space.

Bohemian interior design styles

Bohemian interior design exudes creativity, self-expression, and individuality, making it a perfect choice for those seeking a warm, inviting, and culturally rich space. This eclectic style is characterized by its vibrant colours, vintage furniture, and an array of patterns and textures that reflect a carefree and nomadic lifestyle. Bohemian spaces are often adorned with unique pieces, artwork, and accessories gathered from travels or flea markets, embracing an ordered form of clutter and celebrating the beauty of chaos.

A key aspect of bohemian design is the use of natural materials, such as wood, metal, and dyed textiles. The color palette is diverse, featuring earthy tones like brown, green, and beige, alongside jewel tones, metallics, and vibrant accents such as purple, orange, and blue. Furniture in bohemian interiors is often second-hand or vintage, with plush, saturated colours and comfortable, mismatched designs.

Layering is essential in bohemian spaces, with various textures and patterns intermingling to create a visually engaging environment. Tapestries, batik, macramé, and other handicrafts are frequently employed to enhance the look, providing opportunities for DIY projects and personal touches. Fringes, dazzling embroidery, and bold patterns further contribute to the distinctive bohemian aesthetic.

In recent years, a trend of modern boho style has emerged, incorporating elements like animal hides, metallic accents, and rich wood to add a contemporary twist to the traditional bohemian look. This fusion of styles allows for even greater freedom and creativity in designing a space that feels both personal and culturally immersive.

In essence, the bohemian interior design style offers a free-spirited, unconventional approach to decorating that is deeply rooted in cultural expression and artistic exploration. By embracing the bohemian aesthetic, you can create a space that feels personal, inviting, and rich with character.

Scandinavian interior design style

Inspired by the minimalism of Nordic countries, Scandinavian design focuses on creating calm, serene spaces that prioritize functionality and simplicity. With an emphasis on natural and artificial lighting, this style creates bright and clean spaces by incorporating large windows and multiple sources of light. The colour palette is typically dominated by white, beige, and taupe, with the occasional use of soft pastels or light neutrals for accents.

Scandinavian furniture is characterized by clean lines, smooth and rounded edges, and the use of natural fibres and hues. Natural materials such as wood, linen, cotton, and leather are prominent in this design style, reflecting a deep appreciation for nature. Spaciousness and a clutter-free environment are distinguishing features of Scandinavian interiors, with few accessories and light flooring contributing to an airy atmosphere.

Two notable sub-trends within Scandinavian design are the Danish concept of hygge and the Swedish concept of lagom. Hygge focuses on warmth and comfort, utilizing layered fabrics, glass furniture, and cosy textiles to create inviting spaces. Lagom, on the other hand, emphasizes the conservation of resources and minimalism, seeking to achieve balance and moderation in design choices.

To capture the essence of Scandinavian design, start with a blank canvas and incorporate natural light, organic materials, and furniture with clean lines. Layer in soft accessories and artwork with restraint, ensuring the overall aesthetic remains clean, functional, and uncluttered. By embracing the principles of Scandinavian design, you can create a harmonious and inviting space that blends minimalism, functionality, and a connection to nature.

Mid-Century Modern interior design style

Originating in the 1950s and 60s, mid-century modern design reflects the post-war era’s shift towards modernity and a focus on functionality. With simple lines, wood accents, and pastel colours, this style offers an eclectic yet timeless look. Informed by the German Bauhaus movement, mid-century modern designers embraced newly manufactured materials such as plastic, vinyl, plywood, and wood veneer to create affordable, mass-produced pieces with clean lines and simple shapes.

mid century modern scaled
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Iconic mid-century furniture, like the Eames Lounge Chair, the Egg Chair, and the Wishbone Chair, showcase the period’s commitment to high-quality natural materials, organic shapes, and delicate metal bases. These characteristics can also be found in kidney tables and sideboards that continue to be popular today. Luxurious woods like teak, rosewood, and walnut are essential to mid-century design, and they are often complemented by opulent, textured fabrics such as velvet, corduroy, and bouclé in bold colours like fir green, navy, and purple.

Mid-century modern interiors celebrate indoor-outdoor living by incorporating barrier-free sliding doors, picture windows, and a seamless flow between spaces. To emphasize the connection to nature, windows are typically left bare. The colour palette often includes accents of mustard yellow, chartreuse, avocado, and other vibrant hues that create a dynamic pop of colour.

In summary, mid-century modern design is characterized by pared-down forms, simple silhouettes, and an emphasis on natural materials and organic shapes. This enduring style remains relevant today, offering a timeless and versatile aesthetic that can be easily integrated into contemporary interiors.

Hollywood Regency interior design style

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Hollywood Regency, a luxurious and opulent design style, originated in the 1930s during Hollywood’s Golden Age. Evoking glamour and sophistication, this style embraces extravagance and is perfect for those who enjoy making bold statements. Hollywood Regency is characterized by its mix of art deco and mid-century modern elements, creating a dramatic and visually captivating environment.

In this glamorous design style, more is indeed more. High-contrast colour combinations, such as hot pink and green or black and white, dominate the palette, while shimmering fabrics, glittering details, and metallic accents add layers of richness. Key materials include glass, mirror, metal, and lacquer, which work together to create an opulent atmosphere.

Furniture in Hollywood Regency style often features velvet, plush, Victorian-inspired pieces with tufted and lacquered finishes. Silk and satin are also common, imbuing the space with an air of elegance. Chandeliers, high-gloss or mirrored casegoods, and skirted boudoir upholstery are signature elements, while French furnishings and ultra-glam accents, such as crystal and mirrors, contribute to the luxurious vibe.

Influenced by Rococo and Chinoiserie, Hollywood Regency incorporates elements like bamboo-frame metal furniture and mirrors into its design. As a style that values boldness and drama, Hollywood Regency is the antithesis of minimalism and creates a captivating, high-glamour environment perfect for entertaining guests and showcasing an active social life.

Art Deco interior design styles


Art Deco, an iconic and luxurious design style, originated in France during the early twentieth century and quickly spread to the United States, where it flourished from the 1910s to the 1940s. Inspired by the glamour of the 1920s and 1930s and the Industrial Revolution, Art Deco is characterized by its opulent details, shimmering fabrics, geometric shapes, and exotic materials.

Drawing from the Cubism movement, Art Deco emphasizes angular patterns and graceful curves, incorporating circles, squares, and mosaics. The style’s fascination with African, Russian, and Egyptian cultures adds to its allure, as does its use of materials like Macassar ebony, zebrano woods, lapis lazuli, jade stone, and shagreen. Metal, a popular choice due to the influence of the Industrial Revolution, is also frequently featured in Art Deco designs.

Art Deco spaces are often dramatic, with bold and saturated colours like emerald, ruby, and sapphire. The style’s signature colour palette of black, white, and gold creates striking contrasts and visual interest. Furnishings in this style typically showcase pointed edges, jagged corners, and oversized dimensions, with armories and sofas being common examples.

Although Art Deco can feel lavish, combining its elements with other styles can create a more balanced and versatile space. For example, incorporating black and white elements can retain the dramatic contrasts while making the design more adaptable. Art Deco remains a source of inspiration today, with cities like Miami Beach embracing its distinctive aesthetic.

Modern Farmhouse style


Modern farmhouse design is a sophisticated and popular style that skillfully combines rustic elements of traditional farmhouse aesthetics with the clean lines and simplicity of contemporary design. This unique approach to interior design features wooden floors, white walls, exposed beams, and an emphasis on functional, industrial or country-inspired furniture. Its laid-back yet refined atmosphere makes it the perfect choice for those looking to incorporate a touch of nature into their space.

Key elements of modern farmhouse design include barn doors, overstuffed sofas, galvanized pendants, wrought iron fixtures, butcher blocks, and salvaged wood furnishings. Accent walls often showcase shiplap or barnboard, while vintage signs, word art, and oversized clocks add character to the space. Mismatched furniture, minimalistic interiors, and a focus on quality craftsmanship define this rustic-style design.

Popularized by Joanna Gaines, the star of the home improvement show Fixer Upper, modern farmhouse interiors maintain many characteristics of traditional farmhouse design while incorporating contemporary updates. Wide plank floors, open-concept living, and sleek lighting are common features of this style. Additionally, modern farmhouse interiors often mix metals such as gold, black, and nickel, creating a sense of contrast and visual interest.

One of the most notable aspects of modern farmhouse design is its strong connection to nature. Raw wood elements and greenery are essential components in every room, and colour palettes tend to be neutral, drawing inspiration from the natural world. To add a pop of colour, consider incorporating hues like deep navy, sage green, or burnt orange, which are evocative of nature’s beauty. Ultimately, modern farmhouse design offers a harmonious blend of rustic charm and contemporary elegance, creating a warm and inviting atmosphere in any space.

Modern interior design styles


Modern interior design is a distinct style that originated from the Modernism movement in the 1920s and should not be confused with contemporary design, which refers to current trends. This influential style, founded by the renowned German-American architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, is characterized by its emphasis on clean lines, simple furnishings, and the principle of “form follows function.”

The materials commonly used in modern design include wood, metal, glass, and steel, creating a sleek and timeless aesthetic. The colour palette is typically monochromatic, neutral, and earthy, which allows for bold, colourful accents to be introduced through art and statement furniture pieces. Furniture in modern interiors often features simple designs, exposed legs, and glossy cabinets, all contributing to the style’s minimalistic approach.

In modern design, décor is intentionally kept to a minimum, with art taking centre stage as the primary form of decoration. Spaces are often mostly neutral, with vibrant pops of colour being introduced through carefully curated art pieces and furniture. This design approach results in visually striking and uncluttered interiors, emphasizing functionality and purposeful design.

Ultimately, modern interior design is defined by its connection to the early-to-mid 20th century and its combination of Scandinavian, mid-century modern, and post-modern influences. The style’s focus on clean lines, smooth surfaces, and minimal décor creates a sophisticated and timeless atmosphere that continues to captivate designers and homeowners alike.

Transitional interior design style

Transitional interior design, a harmonious blend of traditional and contemporary styles, perfectly balances elegance and modernity. This style focuses on texture and materials rather than colour, creating a sophisticated and inviting atmosphere. The transitional style showcases a warm, neutral colour palette that includes shades like brown, taupe, tan, cream, and grey, allowing the furniture and textures to take centre stage.

Characterized by clean lines and a mix of curves and straight lines in furnishings, transitional design combines classic and modern elements to create a refined aesthetic. Common materials used in this style include wood, glass, lacquer, steel, and mirrors. Transitional furniture often features a blend of modern fabrics and subtle prints or patterns, resulting in an updated classic look.

To achieve the transitional style, start with a warm neutral palette as your base and combine classic furnishings with more contemporary pieces. Limit the number of accessories, art, and fabrics in the space to maintain a sophisticated and uncluttered appearance. Transitional interiors often showcase features like button-tufting, nailhead trim, and existing architectural elements such as fireplaces and cornicing, while maintaining flawless finishes, silken rugs, and plush fabrics.

Incorporate furniture like tuxedo sofas, upholstered ottoman coffee tables, and elegant console tables to further enhance the transitional style. Curated accessories, such as abstract artwork, art glass, and unique objects, provide a desirably layered look that complements the perfect mix of masculine and feminine elements in this versatile design approach. Overall, the transitional interior design style creates a welcoming and intriguing space that seamlessly blends the best of both traditional and contemporary worlds.

Rustic interior design styles


Rustic interior design emphasizes the beauty of natural and earthy elements, creating a warm and inviting atmosphere in any living space. This style, popular in cottages, townhouses, and increasingly among city dwellers, is characterized by the use of organic textures and materials such as wood, stone, and leather. The rustic colour palette consists of earthy tones like brown, green, gold, grey, and beige, contributing to the style’s connection to nature.

Rustic Eating area scaled
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Furniture in rustic interiors often features distressed or rough wood, rough edges, and worn finishes. Leather upholstery and wooden counters add to the overall aesthetic, while wooden beams and stone fireplaces or accent walls serve as distinguishing features in these spaces. The style’s origins can be traced back to the Romantic movement, which celebrated the simplicity and effortless beauty of nature.

In rustic design, fabrics are typically subtle, without loud patterns, and the emphasis is on texture. Accessories from the outdoors, such as branches, logs, and reclaimed wood, are incorporated to further enhance the natural feel of the space. Coziness is a key element of rustic interiors, and this is often achieved through the use of cowhides, sheepskin, and other soft materials that complement the wood and stone.

To create a sophisticated rustic interior, unexpected additions like industrial pendant lights can be incorporated, adding an intriguing contrast to the overall design. By focusing on the harmony of natural materials, warm colours, and organic textures, rustic interior design captures the essence of nature and effortlessly brings it into the home.

Japandi interior design style

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Japandi, as the name suggests, is a unique fusion of Japanese and Scandinavian design elements, combining the aesthetics and values of two seemingly disparate cultures. Both cultures share a deep appreciation for nature, which is evident in their interior design choices. This special connection is primarily reflected in the use of natural materials such as stone, paper, and wood.

Japandi Design
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Distinct from a purely Scandinavian look, Japandi interiors often incorporate a darker and richer colour palette, embracing tones such as black, dark green, terra-cotta, and eggplant. This broader use of colours results from the Japanese influence, adding depth and warmth to the space.

Another notable aspect of Japandi design is the incorporation of feng shui principles, which, despite having Chinese origins, are frequently embraced in Japanese home decor. Applying feng shui principles helps create a harmonious and balanced environment, further enhancing the fusion of the two design styles.

Contemporary designers, such as Munich-based Stephanie Thatenhorst and Danish designer David Thulstrup, have successfully mastered the delicate balance between the North and East, skillfully blending the elements of Japanese and Scandinavian design. The result is a sophisticated, nature-inspired interior that celebrates the unique harmony of these two distinct cultures.

Mediterranean Style


The Mediterranean style, evoking the relaxed, rustic, and welcoming spirit of the sun-drenched region, finds its inspiration in countries such as Spain, Greece, and Italy. This design style is perfect for those who desire to bring the serenity and seaside ambience of the Mediterranean into their homes, even if they reside in less sunny locales.

Characterized by a blend of light colours, earth tones, and warm accents, the Mediterranean colour palette comprises white, beige, forest green, and terra-cotta, enhanced by splashes of ocher, orange, and azure blue. The most popular materials in this design style include clay, raffia, linen, and local olive or pine wood, reflecting the region’s natural resources and artisanal traditions.

Mediterranean architecture often features arches, columns, and interior balconies, creating a sense of grandeur and openness. Flooring and walls frequently showcase colourful mosaic tiles or handmade zellige clay tiles, adding visual interest and a touch of craftsmanship to the space. Furniture in this design style typically boasts rich wood tones and ornate details, reflecting the region’s history and cultural influences.

Large picture windows are a staple of Mediterranean interiors, allowing natural light to flood in and embracing the outdoors with minimal sheer draperies. To complete the look, consider displaying colourful ceramic tableware and incorporating Mediterranean plants and herbs as decorative accents while providing a practical cooking purpose. With these elements in place, the Mediterranean style transports you to a world of warmth, relaxation, and seaside charm.

Country House interior design style


Originating from 17th-century Britain, the country house style brings the charm of the idyllic countryside into your home, regardless of whether you live in a bustling city or a remote enclave. This style offers a refreshing escape from the grey urban jungle, infusing spaces with the warmth and tranquillity of a charming cottage.

Central to the country house aesthetic are wooden beams and bricks, which may lie hidden within your home, waiting to be uncovered. These natural elements provide an ideal foundation for this look, lending the space an authentic and rustic feel. When selecting furniture, opt for pieces that exude history, perhaps with small blemishes or a vintage appearance that tells a story. Flea market finds are particularly suitable for larger furnishings, especially if they are made from solid wood, adding a sense of character and timelessness to your interiors.

Incorporating cherished heirlooms, such as picture frames, tablecloths, and even your grandmother’s vase, can seamlessly blend with the country house style. These items contribute to the overall aesthetic and connect your space to your personal history and cherished memories. To accentuate the quintessentially British ambience, introduce a tea set adorned with a floral pattern or opt for a classic Chesterfield sofa. By combining these elements, the country house style transforms your home into a cosy and inviting haven reminiscent of a picturesque rural retreat.

Bauhaus Style


Bauhaus style, originating from the influential German design school, is characterized by its celebration of simplicity, functionality, and timeless appeal. Although iconic armchairs made of tubular steel and black leather, such as Ludwig Mies van der Rohe’s Barcelona Chair and Marcel Breuer’s Wassily Chair, are often associated with this style, the modern Bauhaus aesthetic expands beyond these classic designs.

When incorporating Bauhaus principles into your home, don’t limit yourself to a monochromatic colour palette of black, white, and grey. Instead, embrace primary colours to add a sense of dynamism and vitality to your space. Patterns can also be employed, as long as they consist of simple, geometric shapes that adhere to the Bauhaus principle of form following function.

A crucial tenet of Bauhaus design is the avoidance of unnecessary flourishes or ornamentation. Emphasizing practicality and purpose, this style favours clean lines and minimalist elements. The true advantage of the Bauhaus aesthetic lies in its enduring nature; even a century after its inception, the style maintains a fresh and daring appeal, seamlessly integrating into contemporary interiors. By embracing the core principles of Bauhaus design, you can create a functional and visually striking space that transcends trends and stands the test of time.

Eclectic Style

Eclectic design is a vibrant and dynamic style that embraces a curated collection of diverse pieces carefully selected to create a rich and culturally diverse interior. While some may assume that eclectic design is a haphazard mix of anything and everything, this is far from the truth. In reality, the style strikes a delicate balance between layering and cohesion, avoiding a chaotic or overwhelming atmosphere.

Eclectic Sitting Area scaled
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To achieve an eclectic aesthetic, it’s essential to begin with a neutral colour palette as the foundation. This allows you to incorporate a carefully chosen selection of accent colours that contribute to the global, well-travelled feel you’re aiming to create. By harmonizing colours and textures, eclectic interiors can successfully blend old and new elements, weaving together a tapestry of various styles and time periods.

The key to mastering eclectic design lies in exercising restraint and thoughtfulness when selecting pieces for your space. By curating a collection of items that are not only visually appealing but also meaningful, you can create a unique and engaging environment that reflects your personal taste and style while maintaining a sense of harmony and balance.

Shabby Chic interior design styles


Shabby chic interior design, a style with roots in the 18th century, combines vintage elements and a soft, feminine aesthetic to create spaces that feel both elegant and cosy. With an emphasis on painted or distressed furniture, shabby chic interiors often feature heirloom pieces passed down through generations, each adding its unique touch to the space. This style shares similarities with its French country counterpart, as both evoke a sense of warmth and comfort.

The colour palette for shabby chic interiors typically consists of pale hues, such as white, cream, and pastels, which complement the floral patterns often found in these spaces. Whitewashed floors and walls further contribute to the delicate atmosphere, creating the perfect backdrop for the mix of antique and contemporary elements.

One of the most striking aspects of shabby chic design is the contrast between the rustic, distressed furniture and the glamorous accents that adorn the space. Crystal chandeliers, ornate light fixtures, and lavish wall hangings introduce an element of sophistication, while overstuffed sofas and gold French mirrors serve as eye-catching focal points. Ultimately, shabby chic interiors seamlessly blend the old and the new, crafting a timeless, inviting ambience that captures the essence of elegance and comfort.

Coastal Interior design style

Coastal interior design, distinct from nautical decor, captures the essence of beachside living without relying on clichéd seashells and anchors. Instead, it evokes the natural environment through its colour palette, materials, and overall aesthetic. With the goal of creating a seamless connection between indoors and outdoors, coastal interiors emphasize light, bright, and breezy spaces that inspire a sense of relaxation and serenity.

The colour palette for coastal interiors often consists of neutral shades, such as whites and beiges, which mimic the sand, while blues and greens are incorporated to reflect the ocean and sunny summer skies. These hues can be found in elements such as striped pillows, plush sofas, and painted white wood furnishings, all contributing to the coastal ambience.

Furniture in coastal interiors often has a comfortable, lived-in feel, with painted and distressed pieces frequently paired with wicker or jute. Accessories like blue glass vases, striped wallpaper, and abstract paintings subtly reinforce the coastal theme without resorting to overt maritime motifs. The emphasis on connecting to nature makes the inclusion of indoor plants a must-have in these spaces.

To enhance the bright and breezy atmosphere, window treatments are kept to a minimum, allowing natural light to flood the space. Light sheer fabrics that flutter in the breeze are an ideal choice for coastal interiors, further blurring the line between the indoors and outdoors. Ultimately, coastal interior design is all about creating a relaxed environment that evokes the beauty and tranquillity of life by the sea.

Southwestern interior design style


Southwestern interior design, an ever-evolving style, draws inspiration from a rich tapestry of sources, including the soft lines of adobe houses, Spanish textiles, ironwork, and the natural environment of the American desert. The colour palette for this style typically features earthy tones such as rust, terracotta, and cactus green, which evoke the vibrant hues found in desert landscapes.

Southwestern Design scaled
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Furniture in Southwestern interiors tends to be more substantial and robust, often characterized by thick legs and bulky finishes. The abundant use of texture in the design elements balances this solid, grounded aesthetic. Leather and suede are particularly popular upholstery materials, contributing to the tactile richness of the space.

In summary, Southwestern interior design is marked by its ability to seamlessly blend diverse influences, creating a cohesive and inviting environment that pays homage to the region’s unique cultural and natural heritage. By incorporating earthy colour palettes, substantial furniture, and rich textures, this distinctive style evokes the warmth and beauty of the American Southwest.

French Country interior design styles

French country interior design is a sophisticated blend of shabby chic, farmhouse, and traditional styles that evokes the elegance of the French countryside. Drawing from the warm, earthy hues and rustic charm of rural France, this design style creates a comfortable, casual atmosphere that is never ostentatious.

At the heart of the French country style are softly patterned fabrics in muted colours, such as soft yellows, warm pinks, baby blues, and creams. These colours can be found in toile de Jouy, a traditional fabric characterized by single-coloured designs of landscapes and figures printed on a white or cream background. Toile de Jouy can be paired with other patterned fabrics like stripes, plaids, checks, ginghams, sunflowers, and small florals to create an enchanting, layered look. Richer, more saturated colours like sunbaked ochre and deep brick red can also be incorporated into the style, particularly in provincial-style fabrics.

Furniture plays a significant role in defining the French country style. Distressed, painted, and vintage furnishings made from wood and other natural materials create an atmosphere of rustic refinement. Curved panels, hand-carved decorations, and raw wood finishes are common features of French country furniture. Armoires, for example, can be used to store pots and pans, clothing, linens, or tableware, while large dining tables with a dull waxed or low-sheen finish serve as the centrepiece of the dining area.

Architectural features are equally important in French country design. Stone walls and floors, raw wood distressed ceiling beams and timbers, and irregular plaster walls contribute to the style’s distinctive aesthetic. Wooden shutters on the windows are both functional and visually appealing, as they keep the hot sun out during the summer months.

Flooring in French country homes is typically made of natural materials like stone, clay, or brick. Old wooden boards can also be used to add warmth and charm to the space. Rugs made of wool or cotton are often placed on the floors to create a cosy atmosphere.

The French country style is completed with carefully chosen accessories and decorations. Iron accessory pieces, copper pots, and rustic woven baskets add visual interest, while a stone fireplace with a heavy beam mantle and ceramic or stone tile borders serves as the focal point of the room.

In summary, French country interior design is a harmonious blend of rustic and refined elements inspired by the picturesque French countryside. By combining soft, muted colours, patterned fabrics, natural materials, and carefully chosen architectural features, this style creates a comfortable, casual, and elegant living space.

Asian Zen interior design style

Photo by Sanibell BV on Unsplash

Asian Zen interiors, deeply rooted in contemporary design principles, strive to achieve a sense of harmony and tranquillity by drawing inspiration from nature and feng shui philosophy. The primary focus of this design style is to create spaces that exude relaxation, incorporating sleek lines, intriguing shapes, and a calming ambience.

A fundamental aspect of the Asian Zen aesthetic is its adherence to asymmetry, with a preference for circular forms over squares. Nature-inspired colour palettes are utilized to maintain a serene and soothing atmosphere, reinforcing the connection to the natural world. In order to establish a sense of privacy and separation within larger spaces, it is common to employ curtain walls or door panels.

By embracing the essence of feng shui and contemporary design principles, Asian Zen interiors evoke a sense of balance and tranquillity that is both visually captivating and deeply comforting.

Hamptons interior design style

Originating from the picturesque beaches of the United States, the Hamptons interior design style embodies a coastal aesthetic characterized by light, airy, and elegant spaces. These inviting interiors often feature oversized rooms with lofty ceilings, seamlessly blending indoor and outdoor living.

Achieving the sophisticated yet relaxed Hamptons style is surprisingly simple, relying on a minimalist colour palette that includes whites, sandy creams, and accent colours such as duck egg blue or navy. Natural materials play a crucial role in this style, with white-washed floorboards, sisal rugs, and timber dining tables adding warmth and character to the space. The clean-lined furniture is generously sized and comfortable, inviting you to unwind with deep sofas, oversized cushions, and cosy throws.

While avoiding clichéd beachy decor, the Hamptons style embraces subtle nautical elements and draws inspiration from traditional American design and French interior styles like Baroque, Rococo, and Empire. The result is a sophisticated, coastal vibe that feels both fresh and timeless.

To recreate this sought-after style, focus on spacious, well-proportioned interiors decorated in muted, classic tones. Layer various shades of blue, from navy to baby blue, and add warmth through the use of natural materials and textures. By incorporating these key elements, you’ll effortlessly capture the essence of the Hamptons style, creating an inviting and tranquil atmosphere that exudes relaxed elegance.

Cottagecore aesthetic interior design style


Cottagecore, a design trend celebrating a romanticized and nostalgic view of rural life, is about creating a wholesome, pastoral atmosphere in your living space. This aesthetic transcends age, gender, race, and sexuality, encouraging a return to traditional skills and crafts. It promotes a slower way of living, characterized by foraging, baking, pottery, and other old-fashioned pursuits.

To create a cottagecore haven, start by setting the perfect backdrop with warm whites, pale pinks, and duck egg blues on the walls. Layer these with prairie-style touches, botanical prints, and feminine fabrics to capture the idyllic charm of an English country cottage. Cottagecore also emphasizes comfort and simplicity, incorporating vintage and antique items, natural elements, and handmade pieces.

Cottagecore stove
Photo by Nico Jacobs on Unsplash

When it comes to furniture, opt for wooden pieces that evoke a cosy, homey feel. Vintage and antique items with a well-used or weathered look are perfect for this aesthetic. Incorporate nature into your home with flowers, plants, seashells, and branches, as well as botanical drawings and objects made from wood, wool, and leather. Use fabrics adorned with nature-inspired patterns, such as florals, to enhance the cottagecore atmosphere.

Technology and cottagecore may not seem like natural companions, but it’s possible to integrate modern conveniences without sacrificing the aesthetic. Disguise cords and screens by placing them in cabinets or routing cords through well-placed holes. Baskets are another essential element of cottagecore design, perfect for storing books, cosy blankets, and puzzles in living rooms and bedrooms.

Cottagecore emphasizes the beauty of everyday life, with a focus on well-loved wood furniture, botanical patterns, textural fabrics, and heirloom-quality pieces. The key to incorporating this trend into your home is to avoid making it too theme-based. Instead, select a few strategic elements for each space, creating a timeless and genuine representation of the cottagecore vibe. This approach will allow you to indulge in the simplicity and warmth of the countryside without feeling overwhelmed by the theme.

Maximalist interior design style

Maximalist Design: Embracing Excess with Cohesion

Maximalist design thrives on pattern play, vibrant colours, and a sense of joy, as designer Isabel Ladd of Isabel Ladd Interiors noted. Bold wallpaper patterns, glossy lacquered furniture, and an array of accessories are essential components to create a cohesive maximalist space, says Ashley DeLapp, founder and principal of Ashley DeLapp Design.

The challenge of maximalist design lies in curating and showcasing various styles and objects collected over time. Designer Cook suggests having one or two “wow-worthy” pieces within a room to create a sense of grandeur and provide focus. These focal points can range from packed bookshelves to walls adorned with mixed art or even rooms dominated by plants.

Layering is a vital aspect of maximalist design, and striking the right balance is crucial. Ladd advises layering items on multiple surfaces such as bookshelves, side tables, walls, and furniture to achieve balance without creating chaos. The key is to know when to keep going and when to stop.

When considering maximalist décor, think of luxurious pieces, exuberant patterns, and vivid hues, says Frieda Gormley of House of Hackney. The core elements of maximalism include pattern, colour, and texture, often crossing different eras and showcasing deeply personal objects. Swedish designer Martin Brudnizki highlights the importance of these personal objects, stating that they represent a collection of emotions and memories.

Maximalism is a statement against its sleek counterpart, minimalism. It celebrates freedom of self-expression and the joy of interiors filled with colour, pattern, and life. To achieve a successful maximalist design, embrace excess with a focus on cohesion and balance, curating a space that is both exuberant and harmonious.

Parisian Style

Parisian Style: A Cohesive Blend of Elegance, Function, and Individuality


A quintessential Parisian-style apartment is a harmonious blend of elegance, functionality, and individuality. At the heart of this style is the seamless integration of classic and contemporary elements, with a focus on preserving the historic architectural details while incorporating modern touches.

Parisian apartments typically feature white walls, floor-to-ceiling wall panelling, herringbone parquet floors, tall windows, iron balconies, mouldings, and marble mantels. The predominance of white walls allows the historic ornaments to stand out and maximizes natural light. Contrasting elements like deep colours such as blue-grey, beige-grey, grey, and black are often used to add depth to a room.

Jewel-toned accents like emerald green, sapphire blue, ruby red, amethyst purple, and citrine yellow also play a role in Parisian decor, adding pops of color to armchairs, sofas, cushions, and lamps. These rich hues perfectly complement the herringbone parquet, white walls, and wall panelings.

Flooring is crucial to achieving a Parisian-style decor. Parquet flooring, available in various patterns like chevron, herringbone, and Versailles, is an excellent choice. For kitchens, bathrooms, and laundry rooms, opt for cement tiles or less expensive ceramic tiles. Consider marble, waxed concrete, mosaic tiles, French terracotta tiles (tomettes), and even parquet flooring for a truly Parisian look.

Parisian apartments often feature statement chandeliers that add a touch of elegance and sophistication to the space. From mid-century to crystal chandeliers and contemporary lighting pieces, these fixtures make a significant difference in the overall ambiance.

Parisian interiors are characterized by the artful mix of family heirlooms, vintage finds, travel souvenirs, and contemporary furniture. However, it is essential to maintain a sense of minimalism and avoid overcrowding the space with too many pieces. Parisians appreciate the “less is more” approach, investing in a few high-quality furniture pieces that reflect their personal style.

Parisian décor is also known for its emphasis on sustainability and the integration of vintage and antique items that serve as art pieces within the space. Displaying art, whether expensive or simply joyful, is a key aspect of Parisian style.

Luxurious materials like marble and bronze are frequently used in Parisian apartments, adding a touch of opulence and sophistication to the space. In addition to these rich materials, Parisian decor often features a blend of textures and finishes, such as brushed marble stones, gypsum, and terrazzo, to create a visually intriguing and harmonious interior.

In conclusion, the Parisian style is a cohesive blend of elegance, function, and individuality. It is marked by its ability to artfully combine architectural details, a refined color palette, a mix of classic and contemporary furniture, statement lighting, and luxurious materials. By embracing these elements, anyone can achieve the timeless, chic appeal of a Parisian apartment.

Retro interior design style


The retro interior design style is a unique fusion of old and modern, blending classic pieces with contemporary forms in an eclectic mix that brims with personality. Taking inspiration from the 1950s, 1960s, and 1970s, retro interiors showcase bold patterns and colours while maintaining a sense of coherence.

To achieve the retro look, focus on incorporating vibrant colours and prints through upholstery, wallpaper, or paint. A warm colour palette, ranging from warm greens to ochre and terracotta oranges, can evoke that unmistakable retro ambience. However, limit the palette to avoid overwhelming the space with psychedelic hues. Combine minimalism with retro by incorporating clean, fluid furniture pieces that create a sense of balance while still making a statement.

Geometric patterns play a crucial role in retro design, whether on the wallpaper, upholstery, or flooring. Embrace these patterns by integrating fluent lines in fabrics and furnishings, such as Missoni print cushions and Marimekko curtains. Parquet flooring can also lend a distinct retro touch to a room.

Retro furniture, recognized for its organic, fluid shapes, adds character to the space. Broad, elongated sofas in primary colours with patterned cushions create a comfortable atmosphere, while iconic armchairs like the Ercol chair, Mitt chairs, and the Egg chair offer both style and function.

Complete the retro aesthetic with carefully chosen accessories, from kitschy lava lamps to glamorous sunbeam mirrors. Lighting, such as the popular mushroom lamp or overreach floor lamp, can instantly transform a room. Incorporate bold, geometric artwork or nostalgic movie posters and records to reinforce the retro theme. A record player in the living room can serve as a functional nod to the era.

By incorporating these key elements, you can effortlessly create a captivating retro interior that exudes warmth, personality, and a sense of nostalgia.

Tribal interior design style


The tribal interior design style is an eclectic fusion of craftsmanship, global influences, and ethnic elements, which emphasizes natural materials and a rich layering of textures and tones. By blending tribal elements with other styles, such as minimalism and Scandi, a unique and contemporary aesthetic can be achieved.

Central to tribal interiors is a muted colour palette, typically comprised of whites, greys, browns, and blacks, with accents of reds, oranges, and blues to add warmth. The use of natural materials and finishes in furniture and accessories is essential, and building the look gradually by collecting pieces over time will create authenticity and an eclectic mix.

Tribal design incorporates a variety of organic, handmade pieces, such as baskets, fringe work, beading, rattan, bone inlay, shell, leather, feathers, hand stitching, pottery, batik, and mud cloth. Distinctive tribal prints, like Aztec-inspired rugs or Southwestern cushion covers, can add a rustic and authentic feel. However, it is crucial not to go overboard with prints, using them selectively for key pieces.

Accessories are vital in bringing the tribal decor to life. Examples include wall hangings, Aztec rugs, fur throws, and cushions, especially when paired with statement indoor plants. Building the look gradually and sourcing items from various stores, markets, and travels will create an authentic, non-matching mix of pieces that add depth to the tribal styling.

When incorporating the tribal theme into your space, opt for natural materials like wood and rattan for tables, chairs, and beds, while introducing colour through textiles and native art. Combining authentic pieces with modern furniture can help transition the tribal style into the 21st century, as can embracing earthy colours such as terracotta, burnt orange, leather brown, and forest green.

By gradually layering tribal home accessories, utilizing organic materials, and embracing a muted colour palette, you can create an inviting and culturally-rich space that pays homage to the beauty and history of tribal design.

Victorian interior design styles


Victorian interior design, popularized in the nineteenth century, is characterized by its eclectic, ornamental style that signified high status. This style often incorporated a blend of historical influences, such as Gothic revival architecture and medieval decorative elements. The Victorian aesthetic embraced an abundance of opulent design choices, with a focus on colours, furniture, lighting, home decor, window and wall coverings, and flooring.

Colours in Victorian design were initially darker and more muted, including burgundy, ruby red, forest green, navy blue, and deep brown. This was practical during the early Victorian era when homes were heated by coal, as these colours concealed the effects of smoke and ash. However, brighter hues and pastels gained popularity as gas lighting became more prevalent.

Furniture in Victorian homes was often characterized by excessive ornamentation, with no single dominant style. Decorative carvings and lavish upholstery were common in pieces like button-back armchairs, chaise lounges, and ottomans. Additionally, architectural features such as intricately carved crown moulding, built-in bookcases, wainscoting panelling, stained glass, and wrought ironwork contributed to the overall design.

Flooring and wall materials were also essential in Victorian design. Wallpaper with elaborate floral, leaf, and vine motifs, as were faux marble or wood-grained painted finishes on walls, were popular. Common flooring choices included parquet wood patterns, woven rugs, and geometrically designed tiled floors starting in the mid-1800s.

Lighting played a crucial role in Victorian design, with fixtures and candles prominently featured in dining rooms, living rooms, sitting rooms, and entryways. Tiffany lamps, characterized by their glass lampshades, were popular for table lamps, standing lamps, wall sconces, and chandeliers.

Victorian home decor emphasized accessorizing and decoration on every surface. Gallery walls of framed pictures displayed china, souvenirs, vases, and lace doilies were common, as were embroidered cushions on couches and potted plants like palms and ferns. Windows were adorned with heavy fabric drapes and opulent treatments, often lined with silk or wool.

In summary, Victorian interior design was a lavish and eclectic style that combined various historical influences and prioritized ornamentation. Key elements included rich colours, ornate furniture, elaborate lighting, extensive home decor, and intricate wall and floor materials, creating an opulent and visually striking environment.


Jonathan Gaze

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Hello there! I’m Jonathan Gaze, Content Editor for Harry Rufus.

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