Must know difference between Modern and Contemporary styles for a home you love

Must know difference between Modern and Contemporary styles for a home you love

Last week I was talking to a client about the furniture layout of their living room. The other furniture I have selected for them is mostly from the Modern interior style family so either Scandinavian or Mid-Century Modern inspired. But we also talked about the possibility of Contemporary styled furniture. My client didn’t know the difference between Modern and Contemporary styles, here’s my thoughts.

Knowing your interior style       

Everyone is different and therefore every has individual interior style preference. This may not be just one interior style. For example, I like Industrial, Mid-Century Modern and French Provincial interior styles.

How this is reflected in my own apartment is that I have French Provincial style dining chairs and table. Mid-Century Modern styles sofa and armchair and Industrial colours and materials.

But many people don’t know about the many different interior styles and often get confused especially with terms such as Modern and Contemporary.

What is Modern interior style

There are some interior styles that fall under a ‘family’ of styles. For example, Coastal styles encompasses interior styles such as Hamptons, Palm Spring Style, Australia Coastal and so on.

This is true for Modern as well. The Modern family of interior styles includes Scandinavian, Mid-Century Modern and Modern (post Modern).

All these styles stem from the Modernism movement from the 1920s and evolved and developed over time to include Modern style.

I think technically Modern style is Post Modern (from 1980s onwards). This is essentially furniture that is made for today. It is furniture and furnishings that reflects today’s trends and ideas on functionality and modern living.

You would shop for Modern furniture at Freedom.

What is Contemporary interior style

The best way I can explain Contemporary interior style is that the focus is on cutting edge or unusual shapes and angels (see cover photo).

It’s also furniture that plays with different materials, new materials, mixed materials. It’s generally expensive because it’s not massed produced.

So where Modern and Contemporary gets confused is that while Contemporary style is also manufactured today, as is Modern furniture, it’s more high end. It tends to be produced for a niche market.

Whereas Modern style is more massed produced and appeals to wider market. You would shop for Contemporary furniture at Space.

Contemporary furniture is not often requested for by my clients. It’s the kind of style a rich bachelor might want in their apartment. It’s also furniture I’ve noticed in the reality show Million Dollar Listing NY.

So the difference between Modern and Contemporary styles is important to know to ensure that you furniture your home with furniture you love.

Cover photo by dada_design on Unsplash


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