Interior Design Styles Essentials: The Basics, The Biggies, And Every Detail In Between



You think you have your design style, but now you are trying to put everything together.


You just saw the perfect living room design on Pinterest, so you think to yourself, this is the design! But then, you think back to that sofa that you have to have from West Elm and tell yourself, “Wait!… I don’t know if it will match. Maybe I should find a new sofa, or maybe this isn’t even my design style…. ughhhh!


If you have ever gone through this, I understand! That is why I created this list. To help you better understand the essentials for your design style.


However, if you are still unsure about what your design style is, please check out our guide to help you figure that out. With that being said, let’s jump in!


Industrial:


Warm, inviting feel, with a lot of metal and leather finishes. This design style was inspired by old factories, warehouses, and commercial spaces.



These are the essentials :

  • Black metals

  • Light to medium tonewoods. Wood is kind of rustic looking, which means the wood is usually not finished and has no shine to it.

  • Black and dark colors for walls and furniture

  • Black mesh

  • Cement floor and walls

  • Brick exposed walls. The older it looks, the better.

  • Old accessories like lamps that were used back in the day and vintage light bulbs, like the Edison style.

Bohemian:


This style has its variations. There’s the freestyle bohemian or hippie boho, which is full of bright colors.


But the style I'm demonstrating here is a more subtle one with natural elements and minimal use of color. In this list, I'm focusing on the whites and organic features.

Here are the biggies for bohemian:

  • Wicker elements like lamps, baskets, and furniture

  • Huge use of rattan

  • Neutral colors such as whites, beiges, some greys, and blacks, but also earthy tones.

  • The use of tassels on blankets and pillows

  • Plants such as cactus or indoor plants

  • In some cases, tribal patterns are also used in pillows and sometimes blankets

  • Neutral color feathers as beige and whites for vase decoration

  • Fabric artwork or textured wall decor such as macrame

  • Aged wood, driftwood or sandy looking wood

  • High textured pillows and blankets

  • Knitted elements


Classic:


This design style is characterized by luxurious elements and a lot of details. Here are the classic must-haves for you to grab its essence!



  • A lot of crown molding that continues through the ceiling but with a delicate and sophisticated design

  • Very tall baseboard

  • Trim/molding details on walls

  • Crown molding on doors

  • Use of velvet, silk, and leather fabrics

  • Brass and gold lamps

  • Brass and gold details in the legs of furniture

  • The use of marble stones, mainly white

  • Fur in accents such as pillows, rugs, or throws. I highly suggest using faux fur to keep our beautiful creatures alive.


Scandinavian:


Modernism, minimalism, tons of natural light, and a lot of functionality blends in this style originated from the Nordic countries.



Here are the basics for this style:

  • A lot of natural light, which means having as many windows as you can

  • Minimalism in every touch

  • Clutter-less rooms

  • Organic/natural elements such as plants and light woods

  • Light woods such as beech, ash, and pine

  • A lot of white and some black

  • Mostly neutral colors such as whites, blacks, and beige.

  • Heavy in textured textiles such as chunky knit throws or layers of different blankets

  • Decorative, neutral color pillows.


Modern:


Clean, simple, sophisticated, and functional with a minimalist touch. This style also has some variations: Warm modern and cold modern. Here are the must-haves to rock it:


  • Simplicity is key

  • Clean lines: No swirls and no clutter

  • Low seats and beds

  • No exposed handles or knobs

  • Stainless steel

  • Hidden lightning

  • No visible, entertaining, or staggered furniture. This means cabinets and furniture are as tall as the entire wall. There isn’t a lot of in and out or up and down, but rather its a one-level flat design.

  • Warm modern colors: neutral greys, blacks, and whites.

  • Cold modern colors: Whites, bright orange or bright green, and in some cases red.

  • Geometric decor items, abstract artwork, simple shapes such as circles, squares, lines, and spheres.

Traditional:


This style is among the most popular styles used to decorate homes. Warm colors, symmetrical lines, and comfortable furniture are some of its key elements, but here I take a deep dive:


  • Elements with swirls and curves.

  • Crown molding on kitchens and cabinetry as well as in furniture.

  • Medium to dark polished woods with a shiny coat.

  • Floral and leaf designs.

  • Tufted furniture.

  • Arabic and flower designs on rugs.

  • Leather and fabric sofas, sometimes in combination.

  • High seats and beds.

  • Heavy use of colors such as burnt oranges, browns, and reds.

  • Recliner chairs and sofas

  • Heavy detailed curtains with floral fabrics and usually gold tassels.

  • The use and mix of different fabric patterns, for example in pillows.


Farmhouse:


One of the most popular designs! This style is warm, cozy, and simple. Its inspiration comes from the farm lifestyle but its refreshed by various elements of other design styles like Modern, Scandinavian, and Industrial:


  • Light, soft, rustic wood, distressed white woods, in some cases distressed black or colored painted woods.

  • Labeled elements and Mason jars

  • Chunky and non-chunky knit pillows and throws.

  • Bulky sofas

  • White pillows some labeled, light or neutral colors such as beiges and greys

  • Standard colors are green from plants, yellow from sunflowers, and in some cases a greyish blue, but also off whites: Ivory, cream, and beige.

  • Heavy use of linen, cotton, and yarn.

  • Flower arrangements with baby's breath, cotton flowers, twigs, and any small petal flower. Dried plants and flowers, wheat looking plants or feathers that are beige or white, olive branches, lavender, and eucalyptus plants as well.

  • Wrought iron, and distressed looking metals

  • Apron sinks in kitchens and,some cases, laundry rooms. They are also known as farmhouse sinks for how popular they are in this style

  • Knitted elements, antiques, vintage light bulbs Edison style, and oil rubbed bronze are key.


If you’re still having trouble trying to piece everything together or just want some help, we would be thrilled to serve you!


We not only help to design your home, but we also showcase your design with 3D photorealistic renderings so you can see how everything will look before you do anything!