Decorating your home or workspace can be quite overwhelming with all the different styles out there. However the basis to most decorating styles can be categorized into four different types. Knowing which style appeals to you most can help you when planning and shopping for your space or when working with a designer. You can even mix the styles brilliantly within the same space. Don’t hesitate to add your own unique taste to your design. Here is a quick breakdown of the four major decorating styles. Goodluck styling!
The Casual Style
A warm, traditional look that is homey and comfortable. This style typically features light to medium toned wood with distressed and rustic finishes. Furnishings are oversized, easy, and inviting. Use everyday items for accessories and accent pieces, such as birdhouses, jars, baskets, and books. Mix fabrics and patterns, such as cotton and wool with solid textiles, simple stripes, and muted florals . The overall mood should be one of coziness and feeling at home.
The Formal Style
An elegant and stately look that evokes a formal lifestyle. Furniture is often tall and stained in rich, dark, polished veneers. Heavy trimmings such as silk and velvet, adorn window treatments and upholstered pieces. Accessories include materials such as crystal, marble, and porcelain and are often featured in pairs to create balance. Antiques and fine reproductions like grand chandeliers work well in these spaces. Be sure to opt for a palette of neutral and soft colours. The overall feeling is one of grandness and luxury.
The Traditional Style
A perfect blend of the casual and formal style, reflecting understated elegance. Furnishings should have classic lines and simple detail. Mix dark wood finishes with medium-toned pieces such as leather. Upholstery, pillows, and window treatments feature a variety of fabrics including jacquard, paisley, botanicals and florals. Accents pieces comprise of brass and porcelain items, painted plates, leather bound books, and timeless pieces. Mix jewel tones with washed out, chalky finishes for a vintage feel. The overall mood should be one of classic sophistication.
The Modern Style
An urban, fresh, and slick style for a contemporary look. Clean lines and edges are used as a design tool to distinguish items from their background. Space is deliberately placed around items so that they appear to be “on display.” Furniture upholstery is neutral in color, and fabrics are pulled tight. Pops of color and abstract patterns are used sparingly for effect. Accessories are few– but always artistic in nature. The overall feeling is clean, sophisticated, and edgy.
The key to decorating is choosing your favorite style as a basis for your design, and accenting this with items either from a different style or unique to your own taste. Just remember to tie it all together with a common element such as a colour scheme or the historic era represented. No matter which style you choose, your space should be personal and comfortable to you.