Everyone has a particular style, you might not know exactly what it is called, but you know what you like when you see it. But how can you narrow down your search if you don’t know what to call it when explaining to a salesmen or furniture dealer? We’re here to help you understand the difference between furniture styles so that you can go into your search with purpose and make quicker decisions when you are only focusing on what you want.
There are four major furniture styles: Modern, Contemporary, Traditional and Classic.
Modern furniture is typically the furniture made after World War II. Now that doesn’t necessarily mean that EVERYTHING made after World War II is Modern. Modern refers to the style the furniture is made in, not the time period. Modern Furniture is characterized by clean, geometric lines. You wont have curved features in a truly modern piece of furniture. They also are designed with solid, bright and vibrant colors over having patterns. With modern furniture it is function and form over “extras” (overstuffing, busy patterns, etc)
Contemporary styles of furniture is actually a very broad category. It can be broken down into American Contemporary, Japanese Contemporary, European Contemporary and many more. Unlike Modern furniture, contemporary style furniture is very much based on furniture of the “now”. Contemporary pieces are typically neutral colored. The tans, browns, whites and blacks in a home meant to last a long while and go with everything.
When you think traditional furniture…think traditional comfort. Those big overstuffed chairs and couches. Even rich, buttery leathers. Those comfy patterned pieces that last for generations with barely a fade. Think “home”. Traditional furniture is very decorative in the sense that this is the style that loves the use of patterns.
Classic furniture is the furniture that gives the sense of Victorian and historical romance. The antiques. The clawed feet, the rich dark woods and ornate regal decoration. This is a type of furniture that will never go out of style.