Modern design was meant to be the antithesis of most design styles which used heavy textures, carvings and wood tones throughout the home. Therefore, most components of modern design, from the furniture to the shape of the rooms, includes clean, straight lines with no additional detail. This differs slightly from contemporary design, which uses curves and sweeping lines, modern design’s lines are crisper.
Minimalism plays an integral part in modern design. The basic of minimalism include a “less is more” approach to designing a space. This means there are no superfluous details such as columns, moldings, cabinet trim, excessive use of color or excessive use of textiles.
A lack of clutter ties into the minimalist approach to modern design. While clutter can mean many things to different people, in regards to modern design it refers primarily to accessories. This means no knick-knacks, vases, pottery, collections or excessive use of throw pillows, rugs or blankets. Any necessary items, including books, electronics and keepsakes are kept either out of sight inside a cabinet or closet, or are built into the home with built in shelves or hidden storage beneath benches or window seats.
The majority of homes decorated in modern styles use neutral colors and shades of black and white exclusively throughout the home. Bold, often primary colors are used as accents to help break up the neutrals and provide focal points. These colors are often introduced sparingly and rarely used as an all- over wall color.