Many of our readers live in traditional homes, and you can never go wrong with a traditional decorating style. Traditional décor is always "in," and it creates a comfortable, cozy feel to a room. However, traditional styles can sometimes be a little bland and boring. Here are some tips to add a little bit of pop to your traditional spaces.
If you're tired of your living room, check to see if you have traditional furniture on a traditional rug with matched side tables and lamps. That might be your problem. This look often lacks tension, which creates strong design that rarely gets tiring. If you absolutely love your furniture with its original upholstery, try a modern rug to give your room hip appeal. A sisal or sea grass (real or faux) is a great go-to, but if you don't prefer natural fibers, you might like a bold, graphic rug like stripes or an animal print.
Along the same lines, re-evaluating your upholstery is another good option. The key to taking a traditional piece from tired to stylish is the tension between the furniture style and the textile you select. Patterns like tight checks, herringbone or houndstooth can update traditional furniture just right. With the updated upholstery, changing something as simple as lamp shades can have a big impact. Look for simple, classic drum or box shapes and skip the pleats, scallops and odd shapes. Those styles tend to look dated. Pick a simple shade that is proportional to the base and that echoes the base's shape. Black shades make almost any lamp instantly stylish.
Breaking up a set is a refreshing effect. A matching set of a table and chairs was suited to the more formal lifestyles of days gone by. To relax your room, it may be time to break up the set. If you're happy with your table, then change the chairs to enliven the look. There are so many ways you can play with this. Add new his-and-her chairs at either end, for instance, or upholster the two chairs at either end in a different fabric.
Historically, textile manufacturing and fiber dyeing processes weren't able to produce fabrics and patterns in hues as vibrant and saturated as the ones we see today. Using black adds a level of contrast that wasn't achievable years ago and makes a room look more current. You don't need a lot to anchor a room with black. Black lamp shades, upholstery, throw pillows, picture frames - any of these can add an edge of graphic appeal that will update the look.
Adding a high contrast graphic pattern is another use of the advances in textile production that wasn't available years ago. Today's mills and print processes are capable of producing high-contrast patterns in saturated colors. Traditional furniture paired with traditional textiles and wall colors can be so muted. Adding a graphic element instantly delivers a wake-up call to a tired room.
Last but not least, don't be afraid to embrace the abstract. Throw in some contemporary art, a clear coffee table or a bold, modern rug into the mix. If there is one outstanding characteristic of a tired traditional room, it is too much formality. So loosen up and have some fun!
MODERN RUGS IN TRADITIONAL SPACES
Inspired? Need a new rug or two but having a hard time finding one that work? Here are a few tips if you are shopping for a rug.
Modern rugs come in all shapes and sizes, and are suitable for every area of the house, including hallways and staircases. When introduced into a traditional or rustic setting, they can add vibrancy, a touch of the unexpected and a striking counterpoint. Keep in mind when pairing a modern rug with a more traditional setting:
~~~Go overscale. An overscale floral rug pattern in bright colors provides a pop of bold contrast in an otherwise all-neutral room. Don't be afraid to use large-scale patterns in a small space - they can bring it to life, especially when there aren't many furnishings.
~~~Repeat a pattern or color. Using a simple geometric pattern on a rug that ties into another pattern, say, a light fixture of a modern style, can add a great visual to a traditional space. Subtlety is key here; maybe you have a particular pattern in the wall decorations or windows. The subtle visual of
matching patterns will create appeal without taking away from the modern style. You can do the same with colors. Even though the rug will not match the style of the room, matching the colors with the furnishings or decorations can tie everything together and create a cohesive feel.
~~~Don't be afraid to add color, pattern, and energy. Modern rugs add a refreshing edge to traditional style spaces, and are a good way to spice up a plain room. Keeping with the same color palette will allow you to be as bold as you want without distracting the eye.
Need More Design Help?
Then simply schedule an in-home design consultation with us. An experienced Enhance Floors & More design consultant will come to your home and help you put your new look together. Prices start at $99 for this helpful service. And remember, consultations in our showroom are always free. Just bring in your fabric and paint swatches, kitchen drawer (if you are redecorating your kitchen), take some pictures of the room(s), and spend time with a showroom design consultant for complimentary decorating assistance.