Mixing Interior Design Styles with Modern Decor
Merging different decor styles lets you bring your favorite accents and modern furnishings together in a creative way, but getting a look that feels curated rather than haphazard can be tricky. To accomplish your decorating goals, you’ll need to coordinate with a color palette or theme, pay attention to proportions and balance your accents and furniture to create a perfectly blended layout.
In this post, you’ll learn:
- How to successfully combine interior design styles
- What to consider when selecting furniture
- Which style mashups work well together
How Do You Mix Interior Styles?
Before you start shopping for decor pairings, you’ll need to lay the groundwork for your design. A limited color scheme, motif or fabric should act as a common thread when you mix furniture styles. In the initial planning stage, you’ll need to select a color scheme, pattern, shape or materials to serve as the base for your diverse style combo.
Pick Your Palette
Repeating similar tones throughout your design prevents your chosen decor styles from clashing. You’ll need a limited palette of two or three complementary colors to give the room a cohesive look. Be sure to select shades that suit the mood of the space, such as soft blues, greens and violets for a cozy bedroom and bold reds and yellows for an active living room.
Select a Pattern
A consistent theme also offers another effective base when mixing design styles. Consider similar floral or animal prints for your living room area rugs and accent pillow sets. If you prefer stripes, checks or geometric patterns, think about using throw blankets, curtains, runner rugs, bath mats or bedding to carry the design throughout your layout.
Use a Common Theme
Pieces with coordinating finishes, materials and shapes are easier to blend. For example, a decorative gold mirror complements a gold accent table, regardless of their individual designs. Consider choosing light or dark wood wall decor to coordinate with hardwood floors or combine round end tables, cocktail ottomans and rugs to establish a circular motif for the room.
Keep the Scale Consistent
Picking the right size pieces is essential when mixing designs. Flanking a gigantic modern armchair with a set of tiny end tables can distort the look of your layout. Likewise, pairing a small sectional with an extra-wide TV stand makes the room seem disproportionate. Whatever blended style you’re going for, make sure your furniture and decor have similar dimensions.
Mixing Furniture Styles: Balancing Standard and Stand-Out Pieces
When it’s time to select furniture for your mixed-modern layout, start with items that fulfill the room’s purpose. Modern-style couches, table sets and beds need to be about 80 percent of the design in your living room, dining room or bedroom. With these anchor pieces in place, you can avoid one type of decor visually crowding out the other.
The other 20 percent of your look should include accents and accessories in your other chosen style. Keeping the number of unique pieces to a minimum makes it easier to blend different elements into your modern aesthetic. Pick out a traditional dresser, rustic accent chair, contemporary recliner or even a set of transitional dining chairs to bring some flair to your modern setup.
Accentuate the Unusual
Do you have a unique find or family heirloom that you want to include in your design? Decor pieces that would otherwise seem out of place often provide the wow factor in a blended setup. So, instead of tucking your beloved antique grandfather clock or vintage trunk in a hidden corner of your modern layout, make it the main focal point of the room.
You can also purchase new interesting items to highlight a different design style in your modern space. Place an ornate traditional coffee table in the center of your modern living room set or add an elegant contemporary china cabinet to a simple dining room layout. You can even hang up unique wall art in a prominent spot over a fireplace console or behind the sofa.
Prioritize Even Placement
With the exception of the show-stopping centerpiece, you’ll want to juxtapose your mix of modern furniture and contrasting decor throughout the room. It’s okay to group larger items for seating or convenience, but there needs to be a combination of both styles on all sides. Do your best to spread furniture and decorative accents in each style evenly throughout the space.
Combining Designs: Examples of Modern Style Mashups
Now that you have an idea of how to mix interior designs, all that’s left to do is pick your style combo and decorate your home. Take a look at the following furniture and home decor pairings for inspiration or get creative and come up with a unique mixed-style modern layout of your own.
Modern Minimalist Design
Simple and sleek, modern minimalist design has a clean, uncluttered look. This combination includes only the bare essentials, so all you need is a modern loveseat, sofa and coffee table in the living room or a sleek metal bed and modern storage bench for the bedroom. Choose a small dinette set for your dining room or place metal barstools at the kitchen counter.
Neutral shades are among the hallmarks of this streamlined style, so color is usually the main accent for modern minimalist setups. Spotlight your gray seating set using a modern rug with a blue or red geometric pattern. In bedrooms, accent your beige bedspread with a solid green, yellow or navy throw pillow. Or, add a simple vase with colorful blooms to liven up a sleek black dining room set.
Modern Rustic Living Rooms
Consider a modern rustic design to give your living room a stylishly casual vibe. Natural lighting, an open floor plan and natural materials are the main components of this look. Start with foundational furniture like brown microfiber or leather sofa sets. Then, add modern coffee tables, end tables and TV consoles to complete the arrangement.
Once the modern pieces are in place, you can start adding outdoorsy touches to the space using rustic decor. Brighten up the room with decorative mirrors featuring wooden frames. Pick rustic side chairs with check or floral prints and modern patterned accent chairs for extra seating. To finish off the look, bring in farmhouse-style console tables and rustic wall art with wooden, metal and stone accents.
Modern Cottage Bedroom
Try a comfy-chic approach with a modern cottage bedroom design. Pair a simple slat bed or modern king bed with green or brown bedding for a vibe that’s grounded as well as soothing. Lay down a faux animal hide brown rug for extra softness and top your dresser with a modern mirror for a cozy, yet updated look. You can also arrange modern floor lamps or other light fixtures in brass or copper on the nightstands for a warm and inviting glow.
Modern Boho Living Rooms
Whimsical colors and natural textures are key when designing a modern boho living room. To achieve this style, try adding bohemian elements to a mid-century living room set. Arrange orange, red and turquoise throw pillows on the sofa or add a velvet bench to your entryway. To protect hardwood floors, consider including a colorful pink or yellow rug with a thick pile or unique pattern.
Unique and natural elements can help coordinate an eclectic look, too. Use a textured beige pouf and woven baskets to fill in floor space and add light wood figurines to your tabletops, shelves and mantles. Colorful tie-dye tapestries and houseplants such as cacti and succulents further enhance the free-spirited vibe of the room.
Modern Coastal Decor
Breezy coastal decor used with a simple modern setup is a refreshing take on this classic decor style. Evoke the look and feel of surf and sand by pairing ocean blue pillows with a cream couch or beige sofa. Keep things light and airy with white rugs and choose wicker end tables to enhance the seaside vibe of the space.
Modern Vintage Dining Room
A modern vintage design lets you blend old and new for a distinctive, one-of-a-kind look. Spotlight your modern dining set with a large rug featuring a classic floral pattern. Mix and match colorful metal dining chairs and wood and leather traditional stools for an eclectic yet comfortable layout. Add even more antique-inspired appeal with a striking modern bar cart and a dramatic bronze chandelier.
Modern Traditional Home Decor
Mix modern and traditional furnishings to create a tastefully laid-back theme for any room. A traditional chair with a rounded back and cherry wood finish adds a sophisticated touch to your seating area. Classic table lamps and wall sconces enhance the timelessness of the room as well. Use elegant mirrors, paintings and other accents to bring a dignified feel to simple modern spaces.