Stepping Out With Style

Need help choosing your interior design style?  Here are seven of the most popular styles, to help you decide which one suits you.

French Provincial
Inspired by 17th and 18th century homes in Provence in the south of France, French Provincial combines elegance with functionality.  Its base colours are cream and white, with accents inspired by the landscape- grass green, sky blue and russet red.  Think signature pieces like mirrors, elegantly carved armoires, buffets, and big farmhouse tables.  Fabrics should also be inspired by the landscape, with florals or vines, and perhaps some embroidery- it was a popular pastime for ladies of that era. For a more modern twist on the look, add crystal knobs to antique drawers, or have glass or a mirror fitted to the top.

Shabby Chic
This is a kind of cottage-style décor but with an affected feel.  Whites and pastels are dominant colours.  Furnishings will have a worn look, or new pieces are given an aged look for a soft, comfortable feel.  Think about mis-matching, for example with several different chair styles at the dining table. Give the overall look a more opulent lift by adding features like chandeliers.

Originating at the summer retreat of New York’s rich and famous, this look is popular far across the world.  It combines a relaxed, beachy look with New York sophistication and class.

Hamptons style combines light oak timbers with accents of white furniture.  Other prominent colours include duck egg blue and lemon, with stripes for a subtle nautical feel. Hamptons decor features linen sofas, and large table lamps as focus points in each room.
The “less is more” approach.  The whole minimalist movement began last century when artists started to reject the lavish, highly-decorative styles of the past.

Minimalism features solid surfaces, low furniture, clean lines and sharp edges, with steel or chrome accents.  Rooms are spacious with a minimum of furniture and details, allowing the focus to be on shape, colour and texture.

But this needn’t translate to “boring.” It’s an opportunity to invest in one statement piece for the room and really allow it to stand out- such as an elaborate door, an eye-catching light fixture or lamp, or a striking coffee table.

Those who love life to be ordered and organised will suit a minimalist style- valuing simplicity, sophistication, and practicality.
Modern Rustic
This style combines comfort and warmth with sophistication.  It features a simple colour scheme, with plenty of raw wood and stone to bring the outdoors in. It usually features exposed beams, and large windows to help blend inside with outside.  It’s a comfortable balance of informal elegance.

Modern Country
Lighthearted and relaxed, this is a fresh take on traditional American country style.  For example, it’ll still feature elements like exposed beams and rafters but they’ll be painted white for a fresh look.  Quality solid timber furniture is important in country styling, whether traditional or modern.  But you can add to the modern feel by keeping the room uncluttered, allowing plenty of space around furniture pieces.

Think raw, urban, edgy.  It features stripped architecture with salvaged pieces, plenty of steel paired with reclaimed timber, and stone or concrete floorings. The look is uncluttered, but big lighting features add interest.