Interior design styles decoded

On 26 September 2017 in Design, Flipping, House, First Home Owner, Property, Tips

Have you been rummaging through Pinterest feeling overwhelmed with all the different design options out there? From Scandinavian to Bohemian to Contemporary….the list continues. A major challenge that interior design novices face when embarking on the journey of updating their home is a lack of understanding or vocabulary to describe and define our personal interior design style. With an abundance of styles available at our fingertips, it is at times puzzling to decide which style will fit best for our needs.

A basic understanding of design fundamentals and styles will assist you greatly when solidifying your personal design ideas. The ability to define interior design styles will make your task of creating a home that fits your personal aesthetic, whilst also catering for all of your needs. We have decoded some of the most common design styles to help you on your way for your next big home project.


This broad design term is often used as a way of describing a home with clean, fresh lines and a simple colour pallet – think neutrals. Materials such as glass, steel and rare metals are also used.

The modern design embodies modesty in every element, including the furniture. Accessories are used minimally. Classy is often the word that comes to mind with modern designs.


Contemporary & Modern are often terms that are used interchangeably. However contemporary is different to modern as it describes the design that is here and now. Contemporary by definition means “existing, occurring or living at the same time; belonging to the same time.” Therefore, the style refers to what is popular or used right now.


This is a style that is popular in Australia. It takes sentiments of modern design and simplifies them even further. Colour pallets are calm and light and furnishings are simple. Nothing is excessive or glamorous in accessories or décor. Minimalism is basically designed by a sense of functionality and ultra-clean lines.


This style draws inspiration from metropolitan lofts of a warehouse.

Raw materials such as wood, bricks and ductwork are often on display. It compromises majorly of high ceilings, old timber and dangling metal pendants, with sparse functional furniture. Abstract artwork is often used for a dash of colour to an otherwise neutral colour scheme derived from natural materials.


Scandinavian or ‘Scandi’ refers to the simplicity of life demonstrated in Nordic countries. Most of the furniture often feels like a work of art, however, remains simple and under-rated. There is purpose in the furniture along with interesting lines, which generally have a sculptural influence.

Other elements of a Scandinavian space include a mainly light colour pallet with pastels, with some natural elements like form-pressed wood, bright plastics


Traditional design embodies European emotion. Vintage details, awe-inspiring furnishings and an abundance of accessories.

Traditional homes generally feature dim-polished wood, bright colour palettes and a heap of textures and strange lines. Accessories have complicated and glamourous details, featuring fabrics such as velvet and silk, incorporating a range of patterns and textures.

There is plenty of depth, layering and amplitude with most traditional homes.


The bohemian interior is random and busy, and best for those who don’t like to follow the rules. It echo’s a cheerful lifestyle with little rules, except to follow your heart.

It contains a mix of the old and the new. Globally influenced textiles and rugs, displays of collections, vintage furniture and items found in flea markets during one’s travels.

Don’t be surprised to spot pillows on the floor and plenty of comfortable seating space in a bohemian space. There is a do-nothing attitude where anything goes, as long as you love it.


Hailed from the iconic U.S. beachside area, Hamptons style features a light and airy colour palette with cool, ocean-inspired blues and greens. Hints of timber and a nod to nautical style are also at the core of this timeless design.

The overall feel of the house is relaxing, yet the use of simple accessories makes it sophisticated. The intention of this style is to create a breezy and comfortable environment that is inspired by the beach and ocean.

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