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Your Guide to Modern Interior Design Style

by Michael Webster

Modern interior design furniture in a brightly lit living room.

Choosing how to style your home can be an extremely exciting endeavor. However, if you’re finding yourself at a loss when deciding how to decorate your home, perhaps it’s time you considered modern interior design. Modern interior design consists of many different forms and styles, making it more complex than one would imagine. In its simplest sense, modern design refers to the reflection of modern art movements and materials in the interiors of a home. With roots in Scandinavian and German architecture and design, modern style concepts are seamlessly fuss-free and simple. To help catch you up to speed, we’ve put together a guide on all things modern interior design and how this style can instantly uplift your space.

At a Glance:

What is Modern Interior Design?

Essentials of Modern Design

Types of Modern Design

What is Modern Interior Design?

Modern interior design refers to a sleek and uncluttered style that began in the late 19th century and is still incredibly relevant today. Modern design began to unfold as we moved away from using traditional building and design materials like wood, stone, and brick, and focus more on industrial materials, including glass, steel, and concrete. The design is shaped by a heritage of clean lines, geometric form, clear spaces, functional materials, and storage.

The furnishings and décor of this style focus on using neutral materials and earthy colors while also eliminating unnecessary detailing. Being a staple in interior design, form is also an essential element at play in modern interiors. Pieces should be chosen because they connect with each other, the space they are in, and their exterior to provide the perfect version of a calming aesthetic.

Essentials of Modern Design

As we mentioned, modern interior design has several essential elements that help make it one of the most stylish themes in homes across the globe. You can spot a modern interior by its well-defined lines, precise color palette, and moderate use of furniture and décor. Take a look as we dive into these key factors a little deeper:

Clean Lines

Thanks to industrial progress at the time of modern design’s inception, materials like concrete, steel, and glass were easily accessible. With these new materials, straight lines triumphed when it came to interior design, and it’s never slowed down. Architects and interior designers alike enjoy balancing the opposing vertical and horizontal lines of columns, steps, and furniture when plotting out a space to create an extremely sleek silhouette.

Modern living room with light colored furniture on a hardwood floor.

Clear Space

One thing is crystal clear when it comes to modern interior design ideas: clutter is never welcomed. This means furniture and modern décor are few and far between when it comes to setting up your arrangement, as keeping a clear space is crucial to maintaining the integrity of your home. Not only do we recommend keeping décor to a minimum in modern homes, but it also balances both empty and occupied spaces.

Functional Materials

The best modern interior design ideas show off the concrete, metal, and glass craftsmanship without even trying. This means the framework of furniture is often celebrated and left exposed. Therefore, you won’t have to try nearly as hard to cover up what truly makes your space original and unique if it shows off the beauty of natural materials.

Modern wooden dinner table and chairs with a netrual painted wall in the background and hanging lights.

Color Palette

Modern interior design color schemes focus on block colors which include primary hues of neutral, white, black, and tones of brighter shades. Pops of bold green, blue, red, or yellow are characteristically modern and can really liven up a space. When it comes to outfitting your modern décor with the right color scheme, you can use artwork and other accent pieces in vivid contrasting colors with your furniture to really make your home shine bright.

Types of Modern Design

Now that you’re practically an expert on modern interior design, we wanted to let you know about a couple of other modern interior design styles that may spark some inspiration for your space.

Minimalist Design

A style that has similar cues to modern, minimalist design is a visual style with an established history in the realms of architecture, interiors, graphics, and virtually every other type of design. The focus of minimalist interior design is to break away from the excessive and overly decorative and focus on raw materials and simplicity. The key phrase to remember when decorating with minimalistic design is very straightforward: “Less is more.” By paring down on your furniture and décor, you will keep your interiors from feeling crowded and will ensure that every unique piece has a chance to shine.

 Modern kitchen and dining area with wooden chairs, a table, and barstools in the background.

Scandinavian Design

Hailing from its namesake, Scandinavian design is very much planted in its cultural roots. It has some similarities to contemporary design but comes off a bit more simplistic and minimal in its aesthetic approach. When colors are used with décor and furniture, they should be a very soft color palette of pastels balanced out with light-toned woods and lots of whites, creams, and tans. Scandinavian-styled furniture should be inviting and simple, yet very warm and relaxed in its appearance.

Modern living arrangement with an industrial themed furniture.

Industrial Design

Just as the name states, the origins of industrial interior design style lean more towards exposure and natural architecture materials. It can appear darker than the other styles as it uses a lot of metal, rustic wood, and leather. However, its softness and appeal come through its neutral color palette and modern-styled furniture, which instantly can give the room some soul and character. The main focus of this style should be the naturalness and simplicity that’s incorporated, so using any color that is found in brick, natural wood, or concrete will fit perfectly into an industrial-themed home.

Shop Modern Design Style Furniture at Colder’s 

Don’t forget to always shop local! Browse our Furniture catalog to check out the best name-brand products our catalog has to offer to complement your modern space. If you have any questions related to our inventory or delivery timelines, don’t hesitate to call us at 1-414-476-1574 or visit our Colder's experts at any of our four Southeastern Wisconsin locations. More accessible than ever, we can also be reached via chat!