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How to Capture 5 Popular Decorating Styles in Your Home


When you decide to decorate your home, chances are you have some idea in mind of what you are drawn to, whether that’s a particular style or specific elements that you like. Figuring out how to translate your taste into a room can be challenging if you don’t have a lot of experience doing so.

If you know what style you like (such as modern or contemporary), you may not know what you should be looking for in terms of furniture and décor. Or, if you know what elements you like but aren’t sure what style they belong to, you may find it difficult to create a cohesive vision.

Understanding what style different elements are associated with can help you put together a unified design and know what to shop for when the time comes to start decorating your space.

Here are the elements of the 5 most popular decorating styles to give you some ideas:

The Elements of 5 Popular Decorating Styles


Contemporary design is the most popular at any given time because it reflects the most widespread trends. We always use contemporary décor for home staging to appeal to the largest number of buyers.

Right now, contemporary decorating consists of:

  • Clean lines
  • Gray and taupe
  • Glamorous accents (faux fur, reflective surfaces)
  • Metallics (gold, silver, copper, etc)
  • Marble


Modern design refers to a style created in the 1950s called mid-century modern. In recent years, it was most notably used on the set of the TV show Mad Men. Contemporary design has a lot of modern elements, but true modern design has a distinct look with the following elements:

  • Clean lines
  • Minimalism
  • Industrial materials like stainless steel and concrete
  • Polished wood


Traditional design evolves through the generations, but it is rooted in classic décor. It has a formal appeal that can be either very sophisticated or lean more in a casual direction, depending on your own interpretation. It usually features:

  • Soft textures
  • Floral patterns
  • Elegant decor
  • Molding
  • Antiques

Rustic Chic

Rustic chic refers to contemporary décor with a rustic twist. It can also be referred to as country or cottage chic. This look has a weathered, casual vibe that is balanced with clean, modern elements. With this style, you’ll often see:

  • Weathered décor
  • Wood
  • Outdoor items used inside
  • Comfortable seating
  • Antiques


Coastal design is self-explanatory, always drawing inspiration from either a beach or a lake atmosphere. There are a lot of ways to interpret this, whether you want it to be colorful and tropical, calm and relaxed, or modern and glamorous.

To bring a touch of coastal to your décor, include elements like:

  • Seashells, fish, starfish, coral
  • Photographs or art of water views
  • Blue and green
  • Lightweight fabrics

Looking for a specific style of staging to help highlight your home’s best features? Schedule a consultation with one of our staging experts »

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