When browsing listings for your dream home, you may encounter terms such as “modern,” “mid-century modern,” or “contemporary” design. Although these styles share similarities, they’re also distinct from each other in several key ways. Here, I share more about the differences to help you determine your ideal aesthetic.
What Is Modern Design?
You can think of modern design as the umbrella under which other styles, including mid-century modern, fall. The rise of modern design began in the early 1900s, marking significant stylistic differences from Victorian design that preceded it. Modern design often incorporates minimalistic and practical designs with clean lines.
What Is Mid-Century Modern Design?
Mid-century modern is widely considered to be one of the most recognizable modern styles. As its name suggests, mid-century modern rose to prominence in the 1950s and 1960s. It’s heavily influenced by pop art and futuristic themes, although it appears “retro” today. Mid-century modern furniture often features elongated or bold shapes and warm-toned woods. Molded plastic is a common medium in mid-century modern design, as well as fiberglass and steel. This stylistic approach is often considered to lend a more approachable or lived-in look than traditional modern design and several of its subcategories, including contemporary design.
What Is Contemporary Design?
Although “modern” and “contemporary” may sound like synonyms, they’re quite different in the world of interior design. Modern design principles have been around for more than a century, while contemporary design emerged in the 1970s. This style utilizes elements from both modernism and postmodernism, and isn’t necessarily tied to a specific timeline. The contemporary style is ever-changing to reflect the current trends. Today, contemporary design often features striking contrasts, such as black and white and curved lines.
If you’re on the search for a new home and planning your preferred style, one of the three options described here may be on your list of considerations. For those who prefer functional pieces and natural or neutral color palettes, modern or mid-century modern may be a good fit. Those who prefer to keep up with the latest design trends and enjoy ornamental pieces may be drawn to the contemporary style. Regardless of which stylistic approach you prefer, there may be a property that perfectly matches your needs in Boulder, Colorado. When you’re ready to start your search, you’ll need to work with a realtor who has a deep understanding of our market. If you’d like to learn more about moving forward, please contact my team to arrange a consultation.