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What is contemporary interior design? [be inspired]

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Contemporary interior design is basically a mix between what is old but in a modern way; it also contributes with a futuristic view. The unique feature about contemporary design that it is always evolving and changing according to trends and takes different tastes along the way.

Contemporary designed living room
Contemporary designed living room

I wrote also blog post on what is contemporary garden. Maybe you will be interested to read about a s well.


Contemporary design was introduced to the market in the 70s as it was not a style that had its own name. Reason was, it is basically a mix between various styles such as: modernism, decor and postmodernism. It still keeps that part of being a part of different styles and evolving as designs evolve and change. At the beginning it didn’t have a specific name because of the many styles in it but now it has a name and a main concept to follow.

What is special about contemporary style?

The contemporary style never gets old, because it keeps changing as styles change. This makes it special in its own way. It also pays attention to bring natural material to the setting and that makes it different. It also uses recycled materials and supports the idea of sustainability.

Philosophy behind design itself

Contemporary style has a specific philosophy that it should be trendy and sophisticated to make it comfortable for the eye sight. It also should not be hand crafted because the price is important to reach everyone. That’s the main goal behind design itself. Contemporary style wants to be in everyone’s homes and in most cases should be affordable in the price to make it easy for people to adapt it in their homes. Therefore, contemporary uses the latest technologies to implement its work.

Clean lines as seen in this kitchen are one of main feature of contemporary interior design
Clean lines are one of main feature of contemporary interior design

Difference between Contemporary and Modern interior design

People usually think that modern and contemporary designs are the same and can’t find any difference between them. Actually there are big differences between both designs in the details and much more.

Modern interior design likes to incorporate newest ideas in its style but if there is anything vintage and 70s style it is considered modern as well. On the other side, the contemporary changes throughout time. When style changes, design changes as well.

Modern vs contemporary differences [ focus, color and purpose]

Even they look kind of similar but there are still small details between them.

  • The modern design focuses more on earth. It is earth centered and uses a lot of elements from the nature.
  • Contemporary interior design focuses more on the neutral materials and uses a lot of metal and stainless steel.
  • Colors in Modern design are nature related such as (rust, brown, and wood). More or less anything that has something to do with the earth and its colors.
  • In Contemporary design we see a lot of Black, White and Grey in combination with neutral. We see little bit of bold colors as well.
  • Contemporary doesn’t have a specific purpose because it keeps evolving and blend with the new trends
  • Modern: has a specific purpose which is clean lines and balance. Those main goals had to be implemented since the 20th century.

Similarities between modern and contemporary interior design

  • They both are minimalists. They focus on how to have less with the best look and only keep what is essential.
  • Open space: it makes you feel like the space is huge and that there is a place for breathing.
  • Geometric elements: geometry is important in both designs. This is visible in Clean lines.
Geometric shape in Moder interior design

Contemporary design present in arhitecture

The contemporary architecture implement the same philosophy of the contemporary interior design in any place. It evolved threw use of newest trends in form of high buildings made of metal and other new materials related. Contemporary architecture doesn’t only exist in Europe or the States. They exist all over the world. Some well known contemporary buildings outside Europe or USA are Burj Khalifa in Middle East and Shanghai tower in China.

Shanghai tower - contemporary design in architecture

Those examples uses contemporary styles and shows how this popular architecture style is used all over the world.

Important feature is large usage of glass, bringing natural light inside as much as possible. They focus on recycled materials to make environment as clean as possible.

Contemporary architecture left a mark in the design world. Architects from all over the world like and will apply it to their work years to come.

Contemporary design in architecture

What does contemporary furniture means

Contemporary furniture is a kind of furniture that exists since the 50s. It is basically any type of furniture that has simplicity in it and contains neutral colors and texture. Its price is suitable and can be reachable by most of us.

Contemporary furniture features are:

  • Design: It should be simple and sophisticated. The design should complement the idea of the contemporary interior, which is minimalistic but at the same time comfortable for the people.
  • Material: contemporary furniture encourages the idea of contributing to the current technologies and styles. Becouse of this, materials are done with the latest technologies but simple and sophisticated at the same time. Most materials are Soft without much details in its texture.
  • Examples: There are some great examples that have left a mark in the market such as:
  • wassily chair
  • Eileen gray
  • Barcelona chair
Barcelona chair by Mies van der rohe | contemporary furniture
Barcelona chair

Implementing contemporary style

To implement contemporary style in any place you need to know what’s new and trendy in the design world. You can also ask for help and hire interior designer to do the job. You should keep in mind that the contemporary market is going really fast but some features remain the same such as:

Bathroom contemporary interior design
  • Simplicity
  • Sophistication
  • Solid colors
  • Lines
  • Clean appearance

Some designes will stay forever contemporary such as Barcelona chair.

How Does Contemporary living room look like

Follow this simple steps and convert your ordinary living room in to contemporary Oasis.

The first thing to think about when you are making any contemporary design is “minimalism”. You should take away any unwanted things you don’t need and keep all the essential things only.

Contemporary living room interior design

Make sure to DIY your walls with solid Grey or neutral colors.

Use bold colors on different accessories such as an art work, a carpet or maybe pillows.

Use simple furniture with no specific texture and use soft material.

Make simple indirect lighting design and not to much going on.

Give your Kitchen contemporary look

As for the kitchen it is important to make it really comfortable for the family members and you can do that through few steps as well:

As mentioned before the general rule is minimalism and neutral colors

Kitchen contemporary interior design

The windows in the kitchen should be tall and wide to allow as much natural light as it can

Nature is the key. Have a lot of natural elements in your kitchen so it will be authentic and full of life.

Contemporary Bedroom

First step is same like with room mentioned above. We need to focus on minimalism and natural colors.

Contemporary Bedroom interior design

Bed sheets should be plain and solid colors

Carpet can be a bold color to make a difference

All the elements in the room should be essential.

Put lightings to make it look nicer, add some art work

Contemporary Office tips and tricks

The contemporary office should look really sophisticated and simple.

Contemporary Office interior design

Windowing is so important in any office and it gives it a special taste, therefore, large windows are advised with neutral colored curtains.

If needed there should be a bookshelf, but visible in minimalistic way

Art work is important here as well because it give the office a luxuries look.

Lighting should be architectural and fill the whole office.

What does contemporary means in interior design

Contemporary has specific features that makes it unique and special in its way. Some of the features are in the material, some in in color.

Materials are important. We see a lot of

  • glass
  • nickel
  • stainless steel

Cotton, Linen, Silk blended with steel and glass will make contemporary interior design unique and very desired.


As we described earlier when compared to Modern design, colors tends to move towards neutral palette. Design tend to use more bold ones to implement it other than basic ones. The natural colors and solid colors are the icon of contemporary interior

Most popular floor materials for this design are wood, cement, laminate or stone. It is preferred to not cover the floor to keep the feeling of the space. Carpets can be used as long as it’s natural material and neutral color.

Windowing is really important in the contemporary design to get as much natural lights as possible. Windows should be large with no or thin curtains designed in single color.

Less and minimalistic lighting design is wanted. Three main types of lights you should choose from:

  • General lights to fill the place and keep he place lighted.
  • Accent lightings which highlights a piece of art or decor in your room. Art is important part of contemporary design.
  • Task lights to fill a specific area or task. Those lights are used next desk or table which do specific tasks only.

How to implement contemporary concept in your daily lives?

Contemporary interior design is not just a design it is a concept of its own that should be taken into consideration in all aspects of our lives.

The idea is very similar to minimalism as way of living. Try to be minimal and simple in everything you do. Little bit of contemporary way of living in each of us would make the world a lot better.