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About Contemporary & Modern Style
Form Meets Function with Modern and Contemporary Styles
Modern and contemporary are two words that are often used interchangeably. But no, no one is being repetitive when they bring up both. There are actual style differences and definitions behind the words as they apply to furniture and decor. Read on to explore the difference between modern furniture and contemporary furniture.
Contemporary style, for us, is for anything developed in the latest part of the 20th century. Contemporary does not refer to any specific design element, it simply means the design of the time. Today’s contemporary style hearkens back to the more traditional style furniture by incorporating more softened and rounded lines compared to the straight and utilitarian design of modern furniture. Contemporary focuses on the basics of line, form, and shape while incorporating neutral color palettes popped with bold color. Furniture pieces are slim but not dainty. They utilize more woods like maple and birch for lighter colors and less grain. Contemporary design tends to be neutral with a lack of clutter.
Modern design refers to a very specific style that became popular in the early 1900s through 1950. When someone refers to modern style, they don’t mean style from the recent time. Modern style when referencing homes and furnishings is also different from the Mod style became popular in the decades following the height of modern style popularity.
Modern Style Features
One of the most notable features in the modern style is the use of clean, straight lines. Warm, bold colors are another feature you expect to see. Modern design was the first to emphasize the empty space around the furnishings, rather than the furnishings. It was all about cutting out the excess of the previous generations of design and using practical materials. One example of modern style in furnishings is the tiered end table. It uses a simple and clean design with open space instead of drawers. Another example of modern style would be headboards with storage. While many design styles have tried to marry form and function, the modern style puts function forefront.