The Most Popular Styles in Interior Design

19.04.2021 Admin 431
Interior design comes in many different styles with distinct or subtlest difference in its own design schemes, finish, inspiration, history and in its unique creative endeavor.  It is always good to know what sets the different interior design styles apart since it can help you choose and adapt the perfect design style for your next design project.  

In this article, we have gathered the most popular styles in interior design and each style is explained with identification of specific features to help you achieve visual perfection and ensure you choose just the right style for your space.

Mid-Century Modern

This design style gained popularity in the mid-1900s in the aftermath of the Second World War and has produced some of the most iconic pieces of modernist interior design.  This style is characterized by its focus on functionality, vivid use of colors, refined lines, subtle silhouettes, inspired by nature and the outdoors.  This modernist design style gives emphasis on common and shared areas incorporated in generous and open plan interiors. Raw and natural textures such as metal, terra cotta tile, concrete, glass, molded plastic, plywood, and aluminum are just some of the elements used to create new and highly versatile pieces that compliment and defined this mid-century modern design style.  Some iconic furniture pieces of this design style are the Eames lounger, the Egg chair, and the womb chair.  Prominent designers include Florence Knoll, Vladimir Kagan, Milo Baughman, Raymond Loewy, Paul Frankl, Norman Bel Geddes, and Gilbert Rohde.

Industrial Style

Industrial interior is a design style that takes back to the turn-of-the-century industrial era which features cool and modern vibe. The key elements of industrial interior design include clean open spaces, metals such as iron or steel and raw textures such as brick and stone, mix of rustic and neutral colors such as grays, blacks, whites and brown, aged, or antiqued finishes, exposed concrete, high, spacious loft-like ceiling and use of utilitarian objects, antique or light fixtures with metal finishes, vintage and old factory and laboratory pieces, reclaimed wood, and metal surfaces.  Industrial style offers a chic décor and rugged charm, which has become the style choice of spaces that were formerly factories, warehouses, schools, or other old buildings.


The Modern style started at the dawn of the 20th century and the key attributes of this design style focus on simplicity, no clutter or chaos, absence of ornament, décor or detailing, art rather than accessories, open floor plans, incorporates geometric-patterned or plain area rugs.  Furniture offers polished, smooth, and clean lines inspired by architecture from the 1930s and are made of materials like metal, chrome, or glass.  One of the most distinctive characteristics of the modern design style is the use of monochromatic palettes usually, neutrals with primary and bold color contrasts.  Electronics used in modern interiors are streamlined such as built-in DVD players and flat screen televisions in the living room.  Materials such as plastic and plywood are widely used in modern style furnishings.

Urban Style

Urban interior design style leans towards the soft industrial style, share in the similar sleekness to loft-like homes but with a rustic flair and elaborates on structural features and industrial components.  The emphasis of Urban style is combining clear open spaces light colors and clean finishes adds a touch of feminine elegance and artistic indulgence.  Lighting is an important element, thus incorporates floor-to-ceiling windows.  Furniture is a mix of rustic and glossy wood finish which creates a perfect balance of the rural style and the industrial style.

Contemporary Design

By its very definition, the Contemporary design style is the classic, current, and of-the moment design style and so it is an ever evolving and constantly changing design scheme.  Contemporary style is often interchanged with modern design style but unlike its modern style counterpart, the contemporary design adapts in its design style various time periods creating an eclectic environment.  Contemporary design style also implements unusual layouts, open spaces, importance of natural light, lighting design are used as artistic focal element and incorporates metal accent pieces.  Furniture is comfortable and upholstered with plain natural and textured fabrics such as wool, cotton, linen in neutral colors like black, white, and tan as well as lustrous velvets and chenille.  Furniture is understated, simplified, monolithic, sculptural and all legs are exposed.  

Traditional / Classic Style

A Traditional / Classic interior design style comes from a variety of European styles such as Tudor, Regence, Louis XV and Georgian yet have a more distinct visual cohesiveness in its design scheme and materials.  Fundamental elements of this design style include elaborate moldings, ornately detailed with carvings and curvatures, winged back chairs, claw footed tables, built-in cabinetry, intricate tile and wood floor patterns and wood paneling, neutral color scheme with vibrant color for furniture and accent pieces, luxurious textiles such as silk, velvet, cashmere, damask, cotton and linen, elegant furnishings, antique  decorative accessories, fresh or silk flowers in ornate vases and still-life oil paintings.  Rooms are adorned with shimmering crystal, chandeliers, and silver candlesticks.  Windows are designed with scalloped edges, fringe accents and covered with magnificent drapes with tasseled cords.

Transitional Interiors

A Transitional interior design style is a beautiful fusion between two specific individual interior design style – the traditional/classic style and the contemporary/modern style creating a timeless unique trend.  Designers discovered how to combine the traditional elegance and character with the contemporary or modern design elements, cleaner lines, and latest textiles.  Transitional style features curved furnishings focusing on comfort and with straight and sophisticated-lined lacquered finishes, more solid furniture that are large and having robust structure, less accessories, less ornamentation than the Traditional design style, furniture is upholstered with graphic patterns, use of textured materials such as creamy white cotton, smooth leather and corduroy, rugs are silken, fabrics are plush, emphasizes in the use of abstract artwork , art glass and unique objects provide as focal points, woods are rich, colors are of the neutral palette such as dark browns, taupe, tans, and creamy whites.

Art Deco

The Art Deco style is short for “arts decoratifs” and of French origin and most of the decorative arts and designs are from 1910s to 1930s.  This style is an iconic early 20th century interior design style heavily inspired by the Industrial Revolution which is reflected on the use of metal being incorporated into its furniture designs.  Art Deco is characterized by a fascination with African, Russian, and Egyptian cultures, sensual exploration of order and symmetry, exotic materials such as macassar ebony and zebrano woods, lapis lazuli, jade stone and shagreen are taking charge of the design compositions.  Bold geometric are seen incorporated and printed on wall sconces, ceiling mounts and lamps, and angular patterns such as chevron and zigzags adorn light fixtures, layered light gives a distinct ambience and bold curves echoed aesthetic elements reflected in shiny chrome and brass fittings, finishes such as glossy paint, lacquered wood are widely used and an abundance of sprinkled glass and mirrored elements.

Country Style

A Country style interior design is usually inspired by provincial European style more particularly the English, Tuscan or French design.  It is also similar to that of the Cottage design style.  The key characteristic is the coziness feeling of a warm welcome of a timeless cottage.  Warm muted colors, patterned fabrics which features floral patterns, tartan, gingham, large checks and stripes are very popular, papered or stenciled walls, wood, pottery and organic materials create warmth, balance and intimate character.  Another trademark of a Country style design are upholstered fauteuils in whitewash or painted finish creates a more relaxed feel. 

Other wood furnitures typically have limed or distressed finish.  Furnishings are usually made out of warm woods such as pine and oak. Color pallets include the use of greyed woods and neutrals over country pastel colors.  Decorative accessories such as milk painted mason jars in pastel colors, metal accents using light fixtures such as bronze wall scones or copper lanterns and vintage accessories offer inspiration for a Country style décor pieces.


The Scandinavian style embodies simplicity, use of clean lines functionality, efficiency and earthy materials in the interior design scheme. A Scandinavian home aims to create a balance between minimalist efficiency and a warm, personal welcome.  Hardwood floors in light, pale and ashy color are the most widely used element of Scandinavian interiors as well as whitewashed walls and breezy furniture layout and arrangements.  Scandinavian furniture is simple, slim-lined, functional and contemporary, armchairs are partially upholstered, wooden or wireframe stools and benches are common.  Scandinavian design incorporates Bauhaus principles which are characterized by fluid lines and focuses on proportions and low-profile appeal.

There are more interior design styles, what we have presented are the popular choice.  We hope that this information inspired you and was helpful in getting you started on your home decorating project.  Remember that you can always make your own interior design style by combining these popular designs together and let your creativity do wonders for your home.

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