The Top Interior Design Styles You Need to Know

The Top Interior Design Styles You Need to Know image

When it comes to interior design, there’s many ways to make an interior sing with creativity and style. But just how many interior design styles are there? A lot. From farmhouse to mid century modern, there’s countless styles and ways to combine more than one. Each interior design style is characterized by a few quintessential elements that make it immediately recognizable. So to help you identify and compare styles, we’ve listed the most popular interior design styles here as a guide.

Types of Interior Design Styles:

  • Traditional
  • Transitional
  • Modern
  • Midcentury Modern
  • Scandinavian
  • Modern Farmhouse
  • Industrial
  • Bohemian, Boho or Eclectic
  • Shabby Chic
  • Coastal
  • Rustic

Traditional Interior Design

Typically seen in older homes, a traditional interior design style draws its inspiration from 18th Century European interiors. Crystal chandeliers, dark wood furniture with ornate details, drapery and upholstery materials such as silk, linen and velvet are common design elements found within a traditional home. Ornamental moldings, vintage patterns and traditional stones like marble are also common. Traditional design will always be a classic.


Transitional Interior Design

One of the most popular interior design styles is transitional. It is a refreshing blend of traditional elegance with contemporary lines. Transitional homes allow fabrics and furniture to set a more traditional mood among a newer construction home. Mixing feminine and masculine features like dark wood, mirrored furniture, rattan and lacquer is a great way to bring together transitional interior décor that is well-balanced.


Modern Interior Design

Homes with a modern interior focus on sleek surfaces, clean lines, the use of metal and chrome, design elements made from glass, and bold, colorful accents. Décor and furniture is often smooth and simple, but creates a statement with pure architectural grandiose.

Although they can share many similarities, a modern interior design differs from a contemporary one from the standpoint that it only pulls from a specific time-period. Modern design is an umbrella term for a variety of interior design styles including: mid-century, Scandinavian and post-modern. Contemporary interior design is ever-evolving and reflecting the current trends of the moment.


Midcentury Modern Interior Design

Originating in the 1950s, this classic look is still popular today. Midcentury modern homes deliver an airy, seamless interior and often feature living spaces that smoothly transition from indoors to outside. Bare picture windows and sliding glass doors connect onlookers with nature, while rich, luxurious woods like walnut, teak and rosewood bring the outdoors in.

Interior designers routinely use colors such as avocado, mustard yellow and chartreuse to introduce a pop of color into midcentury modern styles. Iconic furniture pieces like egg chairs, wishbone chairs and Eames loungers are also commonly used in this popular style. Today, many of the most popular interior design stores including West Elm and CB2 feature midcentury modern design.


Scandinavian Interior Design

As one of the easiest interior designs to identify, a Scandinavian style is all about neutral colors and creating an airy, relaxing atmosphere. This design style was born out of the traditional design styles in Nordic countries such as Norway, Sweden, and Finland.

All-white color palettes, organic fabrics, ash-colored woods, wide plank flooring and unfussy furniture characterize this interior style. It’s about carefully selected functional items that are simplistic, but beautiful in their simplicity. Other prominent features in a Nordic-inspired home include cozy, layered fabrics, large mirrors or wall hangings, and clean lines.



Modern Farmhouse Interior Design

A modern farmhouse interior design style melds the character of a traditional farmhouse with simple, clean lines. You may see shiplap and reclaimed wood barn doors in a modern farmhouse home next to sleek lighting, stainless-steel smart appliances and wide plank floors. Modern farmhouse homes tend to have open floor plans that connect the family or inhabitants.

Different metal finishes, a neutral color palette, raw wood elements and outdoorsy colors like sage green, deep navy and burnt orange are also commonly found in modern farmhouse homes. Décor is often primarily vintage finds mixed with some contemporary pieces.


Industrial Interior Design

Inspired by the Industrial Revolution, industrial-style homes are all about high ceilings, exposed pipes and beams, as well as stark, textured surfaces. It’s as if the builder forgot to finish the home, but it’s a design style in itself. Mainly open-concept, but interior designers routinely incorporate materials like concrete and brick to create an industrial look within an existing home. It’s sometimes possible to expose the original construction work to get a raw or unfinished look, but often industrial interiors are found naturally in urban and industrial areas. Bulky furniture with a few antiques sprinkled in are common design elements found in an industrial style home.


Bohemian, Boho or Eclectic Interior Design

The bohemian, or “boho”, style has become all the rage as retailers embrace this diverse design trend. A bohemian design is all about mixing different cultures and artistic expressions into a free-spirited, eclectic style that looks outside the box. In a bohemian-themed home you might see trinkets, mixed patterns and colors, lots of wood and even warm metallics. Décor such as animal skins, vintage rugs, wicker or rattan furniture, plants and macramé are often incorporated. Boho interior design can mix a variety of styles into a single room to create a completely unique aesthetic.


Shabby Chic Interior Design

Dating back to the 1900s, the shabby chic design style centers around painted or distressed furniture. It’s even better if handed down in the family from generation to generation, but it has become increasingly popular to see homeowners upcycle existing furniture with matte chalk paint. While creating a shabby chic interior, designers might compliment a pale color palette with light floral patterns, crystal chandeliers, whitewashed floors and vintage finds. It’s commonly referred to as a more feminine style due to the use of florals and slipcovers that resemble an old dollhouse.


Coastal Interior Design

Costal design can be a combination of design styles, but is always characterized by ocean-inspired colors, textures and décor. Warm whites and soft blues are nautical, but elevated so as not to be too theme-based. Costal interior design often has a lot of natural light from skylights, large windows and glass doors—all for the best sky and water views. Driftwood, rope, wicker and jute are also popular in coastal-style homes.


Rustic Interior Design

Born out of the Romantic movement, a rustic design style emphasizes the simple, effortless beauty found in nature. Within a rustic home, a fireplace often serves as a visual focal point. Natural textures, organic materials and fabrics without bold patterns are characteristic of this style. Rooms with natural wood features (such as exposed beams) are complimented by neutral walls. It’s made to feel cozier with animal hides or faux fur décor, but don’t be surprised if you also see sophisticated touches like industrial pendant lights in a rustic home.



Your Trusted Seattle Design-Build Contractor

Much like choosing the best interior design style, finding the right contractor for your next home improvement project can be tricky. Avoid the hassle of hiring a not-so-reputable contractor by doing your research, asking for references, getting written estimates and reading online reviews posted on Houzz, Google or Yelp.

At Model Remodel we are experienced design-build contractors with a stellar reputation in the Seattle market for transforming outdated homes into highly functional, stunning living spaces. Our interior designers are well-versed in all design styles, with the ultimate goal to help you design every detail of your dream house. To get started on your next home project, tell us more about your objectives today!

Model Remodel

Written By Model Remodel

Model Remodel is a design-build, remodeling contractor located in Seattle, WA. For over 20 years we’ve been building with purpose, craftsmanship and sustainability in mind. We are proud to continually make the list of top Seattle contractors for our beautiful interior designs and homeowner-focused remodeling process.

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