The transition from old-fashioned to contemporary all depends on when you last furnished your home. Converting any home from a dated space to a showcase of contemporary design is no longer a very expensive or time-consuming affair. Contemporary homes are defined by many things, but chief among them are open floor planning, natural or recycled/up-cycled furniture, natural light, great cross ventilation and the flexibility to adapt to the changing needs of a family.
Before you even think of furniture and colour options, the one major defining aspect of a contemporary home is its open plan design. Try to allow a lot of room for movement, for tinkering with furniture and also to allow the breeze to move freely throughout the house with as little obstruction as possible. If you have the option of breaking a wall or two, consult your civil contractor and go ahead and do it. Modern design propagates the merging of rooms, such as a living room with an open kitchen. Ensure that the walls are mostly white or shades thereof. If you do want colour on the walls, pick one wall and highlight it with a darker colour – indigo, ochre or olive, for example.
Leave all plastic and metal aside as much as you can, and go for wood with light tones. You’ll easily find a lot of great wood furniture online and in stores. Go for simple lines – straight yet classy. Stark colours for frames and structure are a great idea because you can let the colour come from cushions and curtains. Look for modular furniture – pieces that can change into something else if the need arises, for example, a book rack that also doubles up as a writing desk. For your cushions and other padding, light pastels and muted but brighter colours are trendy and infuse an element of playfulness to the space. Accentuate corners of your home with some soft ambient lighting. Or, if you’re feeling adventurous, stick to shades of black and white, with only a little colour. That starkness is a unique aspect of contemporary interior design.
Real contemporary design also considers the environment. Large windows provide not just light but ample breeze. If you have a high ceiling, try a very tall lamp that spreads light well. House plants, succulents and vertical gardens add life and vibrancy to any room and the key is to group various kinds of plants, preferably in odd numbers, as it adds a dash of style.
The key to a contemporary house is putting in what is necessary, and then embellishing it with a few pieces that help to add the chic factor. Function over form is something you’ll always need to consider when figuring out what goes where in your home. However, add a few decorative pieces purely for form and not for function. Geometric or asymmetrical angles and shapes are a nice touch too!
The best part about revamping your living space, especially today, is that you will reconnect with a lot of aspects of your life that you may have lost, given this fast-paced world. What will be even more appealing is that you get a chance to create a classy space, yet in tune with the times, and with the world around you.