Since becoming interested in home decor, interior design, and DIY, my style has changed many times overs. Partly because my interests have naturally changed over time, and partly because I’m better educated on styling so am aware of style and techniques that I didn’t even know were possible before.
For the last few months I’ve noticed that I’ve been yearning for modern design. Strong linear shapes. Monotone colour palettes. Minimal ‘stuff’.
Having said that, I love my current apartment. Very often I find myself aimlessly walking from room to room just admiring the hard work I’ve put into the place. Not the stuff itself – stuff is disposable and doesn’t really mean much. I’m talking about the memories behind that ‘stuff’. The hours of blood, sweat, and tears I put into getting just the right finish on my art-deco style credenza. The countless trips to Bunnings. It’ the journey that led to the ‘stuff’ in my home that I love.
I still want those memories, but as a person I’ve been living a more minimal lifestyle. Less unnecessary consumption in all areas. Why? Precisely because it’s unnecessary. And I want to replicate that in my environment. So in comes Modern Decor! But not in the traditional way.
I want minimalism, but I don’t want to give up character, layers, and depth. It’s possible to have both.
Character through texture
When thinking of how I could resolve my need for richness and warmth with my desire for a modern decor, I realised that modern design uses a lot of raw materials. Cold Steel. Cold concrete. Well there are other raw materials that are actually quite warm. A la leather…wood…linen…stonework…
Be it a manicured bush or a wild untamed beast, a plant against a uber-modern background is tres chic. The juxtaposition of life and cold materials is so interesting. A plain potted plant can be a centrepiece in a modern setting. It could even be a piece of art.
Pops of colour
When you think of modern home decor style, you typically think of sharp lines and a monochrome colour palette. I love strong sharp lines, but the monotone colour scheme is a bit of a turn off. It’s usually too cold and sterile for my liking.
I like the clean and organised look of modern decor, but I need character, warmth, and richness in my environment. Which a black, white, and grey, environment cannot give me. So why not just add some colour?!?
The following are examples of small but striking uses of colour, and they are perfect! In fact, used in small doses, they actually add to the strong modern look, without looking sterile.
Embrace the cold
One of the great things about modern design is it’s simplicity. No clutter. No interference. Just simple and striking beauty. I say embrace it.
One common thread among the examples I’ve shown you in this post, is that every piece in your home is so much more striking when there’s less ‘stuff’ competing for attention. Each piece has an opportunity to shine and actually be seen. My interpretation of modern decor is not restricted to hard lines in black, white, and grey. It’s about control, simplicity, and ROI (return on impact!).
Use colour. Use warm materials. Use unruly plants. Just remember that less is more.
These final examples are of very modern interiors. Not the type I’ve discussed up to this point, but a necessary illustration of how control and simplicity can lead to a high ROI.
I couldn’t live in these environments, but the beauty of truly modern design is undeniable.