As dramatic as it is elegant, we are absolutely in love with this classic yet minimal Parisian apartment interior. The space feels simultaneously like a relic of the past and also palpably current. It’s this subtle tension between timeless and modern that makes this space so fresh even as it feels entirely familiar.
To create the look we combined traditional furniture, a monochromatic palette, and accessories with a classical flair.
We started with a base of neutral pieces with clean lines. We picked silhouettes that alluded to classical forms, but with clean lines and pared-down ornamentation. We especially love the Bryn chair (Crate & Barrel) and the Leonelle Sofa (Anthropologie) – the swooped arms on the chair and casters on the sofa hint at their classic antecedents, while their streamlined forms push a modern look.
Next we layered in our Chinoiserie accents. Roughly translating to “Chinese-esque,” the term refers to a European interpretation and imitation of East Asian artistic traditions. The 17th and 18th centuries saw a growing European fascination with the “mysterious East,” and the inclusion of these artistic elements in European decorative arts became a status symbol for the wealthy. In our space we opted for a modern take on Chinoiserie by selecting pieces with a subtle bamboo motif, such as the lamp, mirror, and bench.
Then, we sprinkled in a few pieces of classical artwork and accessories with a modern flair. Look for pieces with a traditional subject matter, but depicted through a modern medium. The Equus Wall Art is a great example: the equestrian subject matter is a staple of classic interiors, but here it is depicted in an abstract expressionist manner, giving it a modern edge.
No Classically-inspired room is complete without a pair of Foo Dogs! You might be thinking: “What the Foo, these aren’t dogs?” And you’d be right! A corroded Western translation, “Foo Dogs” are actually a pair of guardian lions. Originating in India, the Foo Dogs spread to other parts of Asia, namely China, and from there they eventually came to Europe. Always a pair of a male and female, Foo Dogs are the symbolic guardians of the home. The male protects the structure and the female protects the dwellers.
Stylist tip: We chose a pair of white-blue Foo Dogs to compliment our minimal color palette and keep the space feeling fresh. Try using them as bookends, or pendant pieces on a console or fireplace mantle. Just make sure you keep them as a pair for maximum good luck!
If you self-identify as a Refined Connoisseur, Contemporary Connoisseur, or a Timeless Traditionalist, you will be sure to love this Return to Classic space. Not sure what your Modsy style is? Take our Style Quiz to find out.