image8ps

Meet the Designer: Talking Boho Prep, Wes Anderson, and the Secret Ingredient for “Good Design” with Angela Lee

The Modsy design network is full of individuals with incredibly diverse backgrounds. Some are formally trained, some are self-taught, and many had established careers in a totally different industry before making their way into the world of interior design. (Kind of like some of our favorite interior designers outside of the Modsy world!) We want to introduce you to some of our talented designers—to help you get to know the people behind the screens!

Want to work one-on-one with one of our talented designers to decorate your home? Start a Modsy design project and get matched with an expert who will show you designs in your exact space in 3D!

Today, meet Modsy designer Angela L!

Angela has been working in the interior design world for nearly a decade, and we were lucky enough to add her to our team of talented designers in the past year. Angela is inspired by design movements of the past—but is always looking forward, constantly discovering new ways to remix old styles.

We (virtually) sat down with Angela to hear more about her personal design style, where she finds inspiration, and design tips she swears by.

white living room mirror gold

A peek inside Angela’s “dream room” designed in Modsy 3D

How did you get into the interior design industry?

“I went to school for interior design and have been working in the industry for the last 10 years.”

How did you find yourself at Modsy?

“During Covid, I quit my corporate office job and needed a break from corporate life. I wanted to work on a more personal and tangible level, where I could actually see and talk with the people who were going to live in and experience the spaces I design.”

Struggling to design your room?

Let our experts show you ideas in your exact room.

Start Your Project

How would you describe your personal design style?

“My style was once described as ‘boho prep’ and I’ve stuck to that description ever since. I tend to layer patterns, textures, and rustic or vintage/antique elements. This combination is a staple of bohemian style. I love pairing those things with tailored elements, such as clean lines, simple silhouettes, and crisp finishing, which is typical of a more preppy look. The resulting combination has both a little chaos and a little refinement; ‘refined chaos’ I suppose you could say.”

living room accent chair rustic traditional

One of Angela’s stunning designs in Modsy 3D

Shop This Look

What is the secret ingredient that you think makes a good design into a great one?

“Time. Good design truly cannot be rushed. It takes time to curate ideas, as well as specific pieces and elements that help a client develop their personal style. And, from a designer’s perspective, there’s no magic number or formula that is going to make a design good. It takes time and experience to truly be able to give someone a thoughtful and purposeful design.”

Where do you get inspiration?

“I like to take inspiration from the large style movements of the past. Each era has given us a wonderful foundation that we can be inspired by. I think that’s why I can’t ever seem to pinpoint one specific style that I’m drawn to—it’s ever-evolving.

“One thing I personally don’t subscribe to are trends. They’re ‘out’ before they’re ‘in,’ no matter how the masses move. I believe that great design stands the test of time and transcends the trends.”

One of Angela’s client mood boards created under her own design firm, Casita Interiors

Do you have a favorite design era or movement?

“I love Victorian interiors; they’re the epitome of maximalism. They used ornate and bold elements with lots of layering. Victorian spaces are robust and extravagant while being inviting and intimate at the same time.

“I also can’t get enough of the Postmodernism and Bauhaus eras. Postmodern interiors are bold and a little wild, and I love the way that this style is being interpreted today. I see people combining classic Postmodern elements with more minimalist interiors; it resonates really well. Bauhaus is the genesis of so many of our favorites today. So many iconic pieces were borne from the Bauhaus movement and are staples in great modern interiors. These style periods are great because they’re not just about interiors—they’re whole movements. They explored the human experience and produced art, interiors, innovation, and changed the way we think, which is why they’re so iconic and influential.

red lving room brown leather couch black accent lamp

Angela isn’t afraid of a bold design!

What are the 3 design tips you swear by?

  1. Push the envelope and get out of your comfort zone. Do a little research and discover new designers, try that layout you’ve been mulling over, get those paint swatches and try that bold color. You can start small by changing your throw pillows or introduce a color you keep coming back to. Or you can splurge on that piece of great art and buy that antique. Don’t be afraid to mix different styles.
  2. If it feels wrong, there’s only one way to find out if it truly is: try it. There are no wrong answers and no stupid questions. It never hurts to try something, even if you end up changing it!
  3. Start with white walls. Finding a great white paint that works for you is a great way to start fresh and create a blank canvas. There are so many shades and so many variations.

The lobby from The Grand Budapest Hotel—AKA one of the many cinematic interiors Angela loves!

What interior from a movie or TV show would you live in if you could?

“I love the Jacobean and Georgian houses in Atonement and Pride and Prejudice. But I also really love Hogwarts and the grandeur of the Grand Budapest Hotel!”

What’s your interior design pet peeve?

“When people want to warm up blue and grey. They’re probably the most exhaustive colors used currently—everyone has grey floors, walls and sofas. And their primary issue is that it feels cold. But it can be done. Though they’re inherently cool colors, you can warm them up by introducing warm colors to the room. That can be in the form of warm woods, picking a French grey (which is a warmer grey), or finding colors that compliment blue and grey, such as shades or orange or red. Having a color wheel is a great way to see what colors are complementary and naturally work well together.”

living room orange and green

Another design by Angela in Modsy 3D

What’s your favorite place to vacation?

“I’ve never been to the same place twice. There are too many places that have so much to offer! I took a cross-country road trip last year and visited so many places, but what specifically sticks in my mind right now is the Rocky Mountain National Park. The golden aspens there turn this amazing bright yellow in September/October.”

What’s the last book you read and enjoyed?

“A book called ‘The Double.’ It’s about a man living a mundane life; he sees someone in a movie who is his doppelganger, and he decides to pursue him. It’s an interesting look at identity and how our experiences define us.”

Want to work with a Modsy designer like Angela to bring your dream room to life?

Start Your Project

pet-friendlycouch

How to Choose a Pet-Friendly Sofa

You’d never want to live without your four-legged friends. But between the pet hair, scratches, and life’s little accidents, your furniture—especially your sofa—can start to show some wear and tear. There’s no reason to resign yourself to a mangy sofa. After all, there are tons of pet-friendly sofas out there that can withstand your pet and keep your living room looking fresh!

Read on for our tips on what to look for when shopping for a pet-friendly couch, as well as a round-up of our top picks!

Shop This Space

What exactly does a “pet-friendly couch” mean?

Ok, let’s start by defining our terms. What exactly does pet-friendly mean? And does it mean different things for different pets? Here’s our take.

A Pet-Friendly Couch is Durable

If you have pets, durability is one of the most important factors when picking out pet-friendly couches. And we’re talking durability in both fabric/material and structure. This is especially important if you have a large dog or multiple dogs that lay on your sofa. In this case, you’ll want something that won’t sink in and a strong frame that won’t warp. And even if your pets are smaller, you want to choose one with a frame that can stand up to repeated jumping on and off, as well as material that won’t wear down from paws and claws.

A Pet-Friendly Couch is Easy to Clean

The reality is that pets make messes. (Ok, and sometimes we humans do too.) With this in mind, you want the upholstery of your sofa to be easy to scrub and clean. Even better? Fabric that’s stain and water-resistant!

Cats vs. Dogs

If you’re looking for a pet-friendly sofa, it’s important to understand how your needs will differ slightly if you have a cat versus a dog. Sure, both shed—but there are other considerations.

Cats are known for scratching the sides of sofas, so you’ll want to look for a fabric that’s less inviting for their claw sharpening needs—like leather and microfiber. (More on that later.) They’re also known to lay on the tops of cushions, backrests, and armrests, which can cause those parts of the sofa to lose their shape. So, it’s worth looking for tight-back sofas, which are better at retaining their back shapes, or sofas with narrow arms if you want to discourage your kitty from curling up on the arms.

Meanwhile, dogs love to jump on and off sofas and tend to spread out across the cushions. They’re more likely to track in dirt and messes from outside, so durability and easy-to-clean fabrics are a must-have.

These tips apply to cute bunnies, like Modsy’s own Moco, too!

11 Tips for Picking Pet-Friendly Couches

Here are our designers’ top tips for choosing pet-friendly couches. Depending on what type of pet you have, how big it is, and how much it sheds, some of these tips might be more relevant than others. But read through them all, see which ones match your struggles and needs, and use those as guiding principles when shopping for pet-friendly furniture!

Freya has her own spot to snuggle up.

1. Look for a High Rub Count

Wait, what’s a rub count? Manufacturers do a lot of tests to ensure the durability of their sofas. One important test is the rub count. A double rub is a back and forth motion that’s done on the surface of the fabric. Manufacturers use a machine to perform “double rubs” on their sofas, counting them and noting when fabric starts to show wear. The higher the double rub count, the more durable the material. Pet owners should aim for a minimum of 45,000 double rubs in their sofa upholstery for it to be considered a truly pet-friendly fabric.

Wilbur enjoys having the couch all to himself.

2. Choose Stain-Resistant Performance Fabrics

From drool and chewing bones to muddy paws and puppy accidents, there are many things that can leave stains on your sofa. That’s why it’s so important to choose a stain-resistant fabric—often labelled as performance fabrics. Fortunately, performance fabrics are pretty popular for furniture upholstery these days, making this an easy-to-find option. Specifically, we find that microfiber is a great option for pet-friendly fabrics! It’s easy to clean, stain resistant, and satisfyingly soft for both humans and pets! However, today you can even find performance fabric versions of velvet and linen. Bonus: performance fabrics are engineered with durability in mind as well.

3. Opt for Removable Cushion Covers or Slipcovers

Want to take easy cleaning to the next level? Opt for a slipcovered sofa or one with removable cushion covers. That way, when accidents happen, you can just unzip cushion covers or remove the slipcover and throw it in the wash! Both of these options are great for easy cleaning.

 

4. Consider the Weave

When looking for pet-friendly couches, it’s not just the material that matters—you should also consider the weave! Specifically, for a pet-friendly couch, look for a tight weave, which is less likely to attract and hold onto pet hair. (In contrast, some nubbier weaves can act like velcro for pet fur—and you certainly don’t want that! Faux suede and performance suede are great weaves for cat owners; it’s very hard to scratch this upholstery. Synthetic velvet is easy to wipe hair off and clean, while cotton or silk scratch and stain more easily.

Whisper loves to perch on her leather sofa.

5. Go for Leather With a Patina

Leather is one of the most durable materials out there, making it a great choice for a pet-friendly sofa. It ages well, so honestly, with some wear and tear it will only look better. It’s also easy to wipe down to clean off hair, small messes, and mud. However, some types of leather are more durable than others. Some leather is untreated, without dyes or finishes, which makes it more prone to scuffs. Your best bet is to choose leather that’s labelled as “top grain.” This is considered the most durable.

Spencer sleeps easy knowing his never-ending-fur blends in with the floral pattern of his sofa.

6. Disguise Fur With a Busy Pattern or Weave

Some upholstery is decidedly only one tone. Others are weaves, featuring multiple tones when you look closely but still overall looks like one color from far away. (This is often the case with tweeds and basketweaves.) We call these multi-tone fabrics, and they’re great at helping to disguise pet hair! (They also help disguise messes and spills!) This is a good option for pet-owners who don’t struggle with pets that scratch furniture. Busy patterns like stripes have a similar ability to disguise fur.

Beau feeling tres chic on this golden velvet lounge

7. Match Your Couch Color to Your Pet’s Fur

The reality is that you probably don’t have time to vacuum every day. To keep yourself from going crazy over pet hair, consider choosing a sofa that’s the same color as your pet’s fur. That way, shedding isn’t as noticeable in-between vacuuming. So, if you have a cat with long, white fur, go for a white sofa! Or if your dog has short brown hair, a brown leather sofa would be best.  It doesn’t have to be exact, but keep it within the general color range. At the very least, don’t pick a contrasting color that will highlight your pet’s hair!

Toshi’s favorite perch!

8. Avoid Highly Textured Fabrics if You Have a Cat

While you might love a lot of texture in your upholstery, textured fabrics are more enticing for cats to scratch. Not only that, but they also tend to show more wear from dogs than less-textured fabrics.

Chairman Meow isn’t allowed on the sofa, but has his own reading nook instead.

9. Deter Scratching Kitties with a Sofa on Tall, Slender Legs

Opt for leggy sofas rather than styles that sit directly on the floor, skirted styles, or those with short block legs. (All of these are hugely attractive to cats with claws!) Tall, slender legs—whether wood or metal—can deter cats from scratching the bottom of a sofa and keep them from moving further up with their claws!

Cocoa and Stella having a blast at the Modsy office!

10. Pick Cushions That are Tight-Back or Attached

Some sofas come with loose back and seat cushions—which means you can remove them and likely means you’ll have to fluff up the back cushions every so often. Then, there’s the tight-back and attached cushions which have a lot more built-in structure. If you have a dog that likes to dig in the cushions, a large breed that weighs more than average, or a small dog or cat that likes to perch on top of a couch back, choose a couch that has attached cushions. This will save you from having to rearrange and fluff them all the time and will ultimately keep your sofa in better condition for longer. However, this does mean you can’t remove cushions to wash them, which is problematic to some pet owners. Some sofas feature fixed backs and loose seat cushions, which is a great middle-ground if you want structure and the ability to clean seat cushions!

Joe the frenchie never met a sofa he didn’t like.

11. Choose a Multi-Cushion Couch to Avoid Sag

Sofas with two or three seat cushions (versus a bench seat) will hold their shape better over time. Bench seats are more likely to get saggy and show imprints of your pooch’s favorite resting spot. Multi-cushion couches are great if your pet loves to jump on and off the sofa or has one particular spot on the couch that they go back to over and over again. This is also great style if a mess or spill happens; you can simply flip one cushion or wash/replace it more easily than having to replace an entire bench seat.

Louis’ second favorite place to nap, behind his comfy couch,  is the coffee table.

Designer Picks: Pet-Friendly Couches



Barrett Sofa, Crate & Barrel

Shop This Sofa

This sofa’s frame is made with certified sustainable engineered hardwood that’s kiln-dried to prevent warping. Plus, there’s a special foundation designed to support the cushions. Translation? You don’t have to worry about it sagging or cushions getting flattened—making it the perfect option for homes with large or heavy dogs who like to lounge in the same spot on the sofa everyday!




Rose Sofa, Interior Define

Shop This Sofa

This sofa by Interior Define comes in performance fabrics, like velvet and chenille. Normally we wouldn’t recommend velvet for households with pets—but the performance option means it’s easy to clean and more durable! It’s a great choice for long-haired pets that shed, as you can wipe long fur right off of velvet!



Andes Sofa, West Elm

Shop This Sofa

Remember those metal legs we suggested earlier? This sofa offers that option, so cats don’t claw them and puppies don’t gnaw on them! The cushions are also reversible, and the cushion covers are machine-washable, which is always a plus with pets (and kids, for that matter)!



Slope Nomad Sofa, Burrow

Shop This Sofa

Burrow sofas are super durable and are designed to endure some wear and tear. Their performance fabrics are scratch and stain-resistant—a great option for homes with pets that may jump around with muddy paws or are still being potty trained!



Keely Slipcovered Sofa, Crate & Barrel

Shop This Sofa

Slipcovered sofas, as we mentioned, are a great option for pet owners. This slipcover is machine-washable—making it easier to clean up messes or just refresh it and get rid of any pet smell on your sofa!



Fairfield Sofa Coastal Sailor, Ravine Home

Shop This Sofa

With a fixed, tight back, you don’t have to worry about a cat or dog who enjoys lounging on the couch back rather than cushions. Since there aren’t back cushions to get squashed, your sofa will better maintain its shape. Plus, the seat cushion is reversible but stays attached to the frame with hooks, so you don’t have to worry about it sliding around if you have a big dog jumping on and off!



Boro Modular Sofa, Anthropologie

Shop This Sofa

The patterned stripes on this upholstery hides fur and stains better than a solid-colored upholstery. And the attached seat cushion means no sliding around or losing its shape!



Lars Sofa, Scout Home

Shop This Sofa

Distressed top-grain leather upholstery is one of the best choices for a home with pets. Since it comes pre-distressed, it will better disguise wear and tear from the get-go—and additional scratches and scuffs will look natural and blend right in. And the fact that it’s top-grain leather means it’s super durable. Leather is also easy to clean or wipe off, and is all the better if you have a pet with brown fur. (It’ll blend right in!)



Harris Sectional, West Elm

Shop This Sofa

This sofa features webbed cushion support. And the cushions themselves are fiber-wrapped, with high-resilience foam cores. This combination means that your sofa will keep its shape, with no fear of it sagging or looking deflated. This is a great choice for homes with large dogs who enjoy lounging on the sofa!




Brooklyn Charme Leather Sofa in Licorice, West Elm

Shop This Sofa

This sofa is made of top-grain leather (and also offers an animal-friendly vegan leather option!). The loose cushions have zip-off covers for easier cleaning. A sofa like this will age beautifully, even with the wear and tear caused by pets.

 

Need Help Sourcing Pet-Friendly Pieces for Your Home?

Start Your Project

image2-377

Sofa vs Couch: What’s the Difference? (And Why We Call It a Sofa)

We often get asked about the difference between a sofa and a couch. “Is that a sofa or a couch? What’s the difference??” We don’t blame you for being confused. There’s long been a heated debate in the interior design world over the use of the word sofa vs couch.

So, which is the correct word to use for that comfy piece of living room furniture? Or do they mean the exact same thing? In the United States, these two words are generally used interchangeably. But these two words actually have different histories and slightly different meanings.

If you’re interested in learning more about the history of a sofa vs couch and want to know more about when to use which word, keep reading!

Shop This Look

What is a Sofa? The Origin of the Word “Sofa”

The word “sofa” is derived from the Arabic word “suffah.” And what does “suffah” mean? It’s simply a bench or long seat made of stone or wood, or a platform used for sitting. Traditionally, these benches would also be draped in blankets and cushions.

Today, the English word “sofa” refers to a long, upholstered seat that has a raised back and two arms and is large enough to comfortably fit two or more people. The intention of this piece is to give people a place to sit.

This is currently the most common word used to refer to that primary piece of furniture in our living rooms. It’s also the word that we most commonly use here at Modsy! That’s what you’ll see them referred to on our shoppable product pages.

Shop This Look

What is a Couch? The Origin of the Word “Couch”

The word “couch” comes from the French word “coucher,” which means “to lie down.” Historically, a couch was a bench with two armrests but no back. The point of this type of furniture was not to sit but to lie down and lounge.

Interestingly, today the meaning of a couch is not a bench with two armrests and no back but a bench with a back and optional armrests. With that, couches tend to have a more casual appearance.

Sofa vs Couch: What’s the Difference?

On a practical level? Nothing, really. Like we said earlier, these two words are used fairly interchangeably in the United States. (Kind of like the words “soda” and “pop.”)

However, colloquially, the word sofa tends to imply a more formal piece of furniture that’s design-driven, while the word couch tends to be used more in reference to large, over-stuffed pieces that are more comfort-driven.

Think of it this way: a sofa goes in your formal living room, while a couch is the perfect piece for a family room or den. The former is what you’d invite guests to sit on during a cocktail party, while the latter is where you’d curl up for a family movie night.

But again—these are very nuanced differences, and in general you can use either word!. When it comes to working with a Modsy designer, you can use the word sofa or couch, and they’ll know exactly what you mean!

 

Wait—so what is a loveseat, settee, sectional, and chaise lounge then?

While sofa and couch are the two most common words used to describe this piece of living room furniture, there are quite a few other terms—some of which are interchangeable, others that have slightly nuanced meanings.

A loveseat is simply a smaller, two-seat sofa. (A hybrid between an armchair and sofa!) A settee is a different type of small sofa, usually with a slimmer profile; high, straight back; and a shallower two-person seat. This is a more formal piece of furniture. A sectional is a sofa, but with an extra section that’s perpendicular to the main section, which allows more people to be seated And a chaise lounge? It’s an upholstered sofa that has more of the shape of an elongated chair, which supports your legs while you’re—you guessed it—lounging.

And then there are the other terms—divan, davenport, chesterfield. These are all just different words for the same thing: a sofa. (Interesting tidbit: “chesterfield” is the word many Canadians use to refer to a sofa—but here in the US, chesterfield is a specific style of sofa.)

Shopping for a Sofa (or a Couch)?

While we love a good design history lesson, there are more practical matters at hand when it comes to sofas and couches. If you’re in the market for a sofa, you’re probably wondering what style to choose and how much to spend. We have a ton of other sofa content on our blog. Find some of our favorite posts, below!

And don’t forget to check out our living room design ideas page to see some of our favorite sofas in action!

Try on Sofas in Your Exact Room in Modsy 3D

Start Your Project

2022-color-of-the-year-announced

Meet the 2022 Paint Colors of the Year!

In the last quarter of each year, paint and design companies forecast color trends for the year ahead, and many pick out a color of the year that represents aspirations and moods for the next 365 days to come.

Three of the most popular paint companies—Behr, Sherwin-Williams, and Benjamin Moore—have all announced their 2022 Colors of the Year. We were quite interested to discover that they’re all fairly similar shades of light, earthy greens. But they do have subtle differences!

Swatches of the 2022 paint colors of the year—Evergreen Fog, Breezeway, and October Mist

The 2022 Paint Colors of the Year are…

  • Evergreen Fog, Sherwin Williams
  • Breezeway, Behr
  • October Mist, Benjamin Moore

There was much more color variety in the 2021 colors of the year. But after 20 months of living in a very stressful, uncertain reality, we wondered if there’s a reason that all three of these companies landed on similar colors. All three of the shades of green that were selected are rooted in a sense of calmness and earthiness. We find that these three colors all tap into the same idea, and in their similarities there’s a sense of validation about what the collective consciousness is craving: peace, calm, grounding, inspiration. So, it actually makes sense that they’re pretty similar.

Since they’re all more earthy neutrals, with tones that are inspired by nature, there’s also a connection to the trending concept of biophilic interior design. The color of the year choices are reflective of more people using organic colors and natural elements within their homes to feel more connected to nature.

To further explore the similarities and differences between these three colors, we had one of our designers, Katherine, try these colors on for size. She used the colors of the year as the paint color of a room, then played with how each one interacted with furniture, decor, and other colors within a room. She brought each of these colors to life in ways that feel fresh and different.

Read on to learn more about the 2022 colors of the year and explore how you can design around these trending colors.

Costal living room with a white sofa and walls painted Breezeway, Behr's 2022 color of the year

Shop This Look

The Behr 2022 Color of the Year: Breezeway

Breezeway is a peaceful silvery-green that is inspired by the color of sea glass, which can be found on sandy ocean beaches. Behr says that this cool green tone represents a desire to move forward and discover newfound passions. There is something uplifting and inspiring about this color, isn’t there?

This color is part of Behr’s Color Trends 2022 Palette. Behr says this 20-color collection is intended to “inspire us to enter the new year on a hopeful note, while still centering the home as an ultimate oasis.”

Here’s how Modsy Designer, Katherine, brought Breezeway to life…

What are your thoughts on the Behr 2022 color of the year?

“This color feels very serene, comforting, and hopeful to me. It’s a mix of blue and green but it’s not heavy—in fact, it’s quite light and airy. I think it’s a beautiful color and adds a lot of exuberance to any space.”

What about the color inspired your design?

“I took inspiration from my many trips to Charleston, SC, where this tone of blue-green is quite common in the southern coastal homes. I wanted to create a sophisticated yet cozy coastal-inspired living room that feels very welcoming.”

Who would you recommend this color to?

“This color is perfect for anyone who wants to lighten up a space without foregoing color. It has a sea glass quality and works beautifully with natural materials like linen, jute, and natural greenery.”

 

Dining room design with a rustic wood table, white dining chairs, and walls painted Evergreen Fag, Sherwin Williams' 2022 color of the year

Shop This Look

The Sherwin-Williams 2022 Color of the Year: Evergreen Fog

Evergreen Fog is an organic gray-green (with hints of blue undertones) that was inspired by the quiet calm of a forest and the sense of renewal that can be found outdoors. Versatile and calming, it brings subtle color to a room while offering an edge of sophistication.

Sherwin-Williams calls it “the color of new beginnings” and says it’s a soothing and “restorative shade that breathes freshness” into a space. That’s definitely something we can get behind!

Here’s how Modsy Designer, Katherine, brought Evergreen Fog to life…

What are your thoughts on the Sherwin-Williams 2022 color of the year?

“This color feels earthy and serene to me. It’s a very muted gray-green, which almost feels like a neutral. I think this is a huge win, because it’s versatile and would look amazing with many color palettes and in various styles and types of spaces.”

What about the color inspired your design?

“I was inspired by the calming and organic feel of this color. To me, it feels like early autumn! I wanted to accent it with other earthy materials and colors, like natural wood, deeper greens, and rusty reds, then juxtapose all those tones with crisp whites for a fresh touch.”

Who would you recommend this color to?

“If you are drawn to earth tones, or even neutral colors, but want to dip your toe into a color with a bit more saturation, Evergreen Fog is a perfect transition. I think this color would shine the most in spaces with abundant natural light!”

Boho bedroom design with wood furniture, October Mist walls, and black trim

Shop This Look

The Benjamin Moore 2022 Color of the Year: October Mist

October Mist is a gentle shade of sage that evokes the silver-green stem of a flower. As a wall color, it quietly anchors a room, creating a canvas over which you can layer other colors. The versatility of October Mist is intended to encourage creativity and individual expression, so you can bring it to life in whatever way speaks to you.

This color is part of Benjamin Moore’s Color Trends 2022 palette, a collection of 14 hues that Benjamin Moore says is “harmonious yet diverse, reliable yet whimsical, and meditative yet eclectic.”

Read Next: The 13 Most Popular Benjamin Moore Paint Colors

Here’s how Modsy Designer, Katherine, brought October Mist to life…

What are your thoughts on the Benjamin Moore 2022 color of the year?

“This color is similar to the other two colors of the year, but it feels more muted than the others. I like to think of it like a pastel olive green! It could almost get away with being a neutral color in the right setting.”

What about the color inspired your design?

“I was inspired by the muted earthy tone of this hue. I wanted to play up the contrast that would make this color pop, so I used crisp whites and deep satin blacks to make this olivey-green really sing. It feels understated, so adding natural elements and going for a bit of a boho chic look really spoke to me.”

Who would you recommend this color to?

“If you are looking for hints of green but don’t want it to overpower the space, this is a lovely color. It can sway gray or green, depending on what you put in the space, so it’s actually very versatile. It’s a great paint choice for someone who likes to regularly switch up accent colors and decor within a space.”

Want to explore more popular paint colors? Check out our post on how to choose a color palette, plus the top 10 bedroom paint colors and the best living room paint colors.

Want to try on the 2022 Colors of the Year in your own home?

Start Your Project

best-living-paint-colors3

Designer Picks: The 12 Best Living Room Paint Colors for Any Home

The living room is the headquarters of the home. It’s likely the place where you spend most of your waking hours within your home. A space to gather with friends and family, as well as relax and watch your favorite shows, it’s no wonder that living rooms are often the space people invest the greatest amount of time and money into decorating!

Because of the importance of this space within your home, it’s worth taking the time to create a look and feel that’s reflective of your style and how you want to feel in your living room. One of the easiest but most impactful ways to create the mood you want in your space? Color! Specifically, paint colors.

Paint is a huge factor in interior design. It helps set the tone of a space and helps establish the living room color scheme. But it can be hard to choose the right color of paint for your living room. There are so many options out there!

To help you land on the right color for your living room, our designers rounded up the best living room paint colors. They’re dishing all the details of what vibes these colors can create in your living room. (Oh, and before you pull out the paint and rollers and start painting those living room walls, be sure to read our tips for painting a room, with do’s and don’ts from the experts!)

Read on for the 12 best living room paint colors, according to Modsy designers.

Shop This Look

1. Gray Owl, Benjamin Moore

Shades of gray are popular living room colors. And Gray Owl is a great choice if you want to lean toward the more subtle end of the gray color spectrum. A light gray color with cool undertones, it gives off a casual and cool vibe. It adds just enough color to your living room so it feels contemporary and crisp, and doesn’t cast warm, yellow shadows as some grays have a tendency to do.

This color works well with… 

Other cool tones, like the neutrals, greens, and other shades of gray—as seen in the design above! It’s part of Benjamin Moore’s Classic collection, so it pairs well with other classic tones and is made for bold and saturated spaces.

Shop This Look

2. Eider White, Sherwin-Williams

Eider White by Sherwin-Williams is an off-white, with a hint of warm gray undertones. Because of those undertones, it often casts a slightly purple or pink hue in bright light. But overall, it’s a soft and warm off-white color that adds coziness and warmth to any space.

This color works well with…  

Both warm and cool tones. (However, pairing it with warm hues will pull out the purple undertones.) It’s a great universal color for the whole home if you want a true off-white.

 

Shop This Look

3. Black Satin, Benjamin Moore

In fashion, the color black is synonymous with elegance and chic. And this is just as true with paint colors—especially with Benjamin Moore’s Black Satin. This soft but dramatic black gives off a very vogue, fashion-forward vibe. Bold and attention-grabbing, it’s an amazing accent wall color in living rooms. This is the best paint color if you want something super dramatic.

This color works well with… 

Bold patterns, materials and textures. (The dark wall color will only accentuate the other rich elements in the space.) Black is a universal color, so it can work for many styles—but in a living room, it works best with modern styles and spaces with a lot of lighting.

Shop This Look

4. Perfectly Pale, Pantone

Perfectly Pale is a warm, pale beige. It’s a soothing and inviting sandy hue that makes you feel relaxed and at home. Sounds pretty nice for a living room, huh?? It’s one of the best living room paint colors for those who like color palettes of warm neutrals.

This color works well with… 

A variety of color palettes—especially other warm tones like gold, rust, and warm woods. It’s a perfect wall color for a cozy family room, or a space where you want the decor to do the talking and the wall color to take the backseat while not just being an average, cold white.

Shop This Look

5. Laurel Woods, Sherwin-Williams

Laurel Woods is a dark, earthy green paint, with a slightly grey undertone. This keeps it out of the jewel tone camp and more in the realm of saturated earth tones. Organic and rustic, it’s a sophisticated green and one of those popular living room colors that is used just as often on the outside of homes as on the inside. It’s a little moody while still being a universally appealing shade of green.

This color works well with…  

Rustic decor, due to the earthy nature of this grey-green tone. You can make it look more crisp and bright in your living room by pairing it with neutrals, whites, and lots of natural light.

Shop This Look

6. Cloud White, Benjamin Moore

Cloud White is a lightweight, luminous shade of white that is reminiscent of puffy white clouds. (Hence the name!) It gives a glowing, light and airy feel to any space, making it a great choice for dark or small spaces, as it will help them appear larger and more radiant.

This color works well with… 

Almost any style. This color is very universal and works with both cool and warm color palettes—though it will slightly reflect the other colors of the space due to its luminous nature.

Shop This Look

7. Sulking Room Pink, Farrow & Ball

Sulking Room Pink is a warm and muted rose color, with a powdery soft hue. It has a soft and romantic vibe that’s easy to use with other tones. It especially looks pretty with creamy whites, greens, golds, and natural materials.

This color works well with…  

Classic, traditional, and even eclectic styles, because it’s a true rose hue. It adds warmth and a feminine soft touch to living room walls, while lending an air of sophistication.

Shop This Look

8. Dovetail, Sherwin-Williams

Dovetail is a warm gray paint color that looks softer and less traditional than a true cool gray. It’s a homey and welcoming color that is a little deeper and richer than just a beige or white, adding a cozy touch to living rooms.

This color works well with… 

A living room with other warm or neutral colors—like whites, tans, and even wood tones. It has an earthy feel, so rustic, modern rustic, eclectic, and even transitional styles work well with this paint color.

Shop This Look

9. Gentleman’s Gray, Benjamin Moore

Though it’s gray in name, Gentleman’s Gray is actually more a blackened blue that’s a close cousin of classic navy. It’s a stately and bold color that adds a lot of depth to any space. This classic shade is striking with other deep, rich colors.

This color works well with… 

Traditional and classic spaces. This formal, masculine color pairs well with most wood tones and pops against white detailing.

Designer Tip: Use Gentlemen’s Gray in a living room with layered or good natural light so it doesn’t create a cave-like feel in your space!

Shop This Look

10. Concord Ivory, Benjamin Moore

Concord Ivory is a golden-yellow with slight apricot undertones. This paint color was inspired by Moroccan pottery, so it’s a more global take on a yellow-gold. The bright hue adds energy to a living room while also being warm and welcoming.

This color works well with… 

Eclectic and global living rooms with a variety of natural textures. Concord Ivory is great for a natural-lit living room, as it’s a color that’s greatly enhanced by natural sunlight. It pairs well with bold, saturated colors since it’s a pretty pale paint color. (We especially love it with rich leathers and wood tones!)

Shop This Look

11. Wimborne White, Farrow & Ball

At a glance, Wimborne White looks very close to a pure white tone—but it’s actually a subtle off-white, with slightly warm undertones. A clean and bright neutral, it adds a fresh and crisp yet warm feeling to a living room.

This color works well with…  

A variety of color palettes, especially those with warmer earth tones and other warm neutrals. It’s gorgeous in well-lit spaces, as it’s a luminous and warm shade of white.

Shop This Look

12. Gray Cashmere, Benjamin Moore

Gray Cashmere is a super light shade of gray-green, with blue-ish undertones. (In natural light it will appear more blue than green.) Cool and collected, it’s a very soothing pseudo-neutral that can go with warm or cool colors, and looks great with other neutrals that accentuate the green undertones.

This color works well with… 

Transitional, contemporary, and even coastal styles. It looks great against crisp white trim, which makes this color pop.

Looking for more color inspiration? Check out our designers’ picks for best bedroom paint colors and a round-up of the most popular Benjamin Moore paint colors!

Want to try these paint colors on in your exact room?

Start Your Project

family-room-design-tips9

Family Room Design: 14 Cozy Family Room Decorating Ideas

Ah, family rooms. Undoubtedly, it’s the most casual and comfy space in any home for the whole family (yes, even pets!) to gather, relax, and lounge out. It’s the happy medium between formal living room and media room, where conversation and movie marathons all take place. It’s also the busiest space where children, for the most part, have free reign.

With all that in mind, it’s also easy to see why it can be a challenge decorating a family room. There needs to be a balance of function and style, from making sure there’s practical storage to having a TV setup that isn’t a complete eyesore. There often needs to be kid-friendly designs also. And most important, there needs to be big, comfortable seating, because the family room is designed to be used every day.

The Difference Between Living Room vs. Family Room

Before we dive in further, you may be wondering what’s the difference between a living room and a family room. For the most part, the terms are interchangeable today, but they ultimately do refer to different spaces.

First, the living room is commonly seen as a more elevated, formal space, while the family room is a cozier and informal gathering spot. Second, the living room is usually located in the front of the home, to welcome guests, while the family room is often more tucked away, either closer to the back of the house or in a basement. And finally, while some homes have both these spaces, others only have one main living area, in which case, it tends to be used more like a family room.

Either way, there’s no right or wrong answer when it comes to decorating. Just be sure to decide how you want to use your space, and follow your design instincts!

Now to help you design a space that’s right for you and your squad, we’ve rounded up our best family room decorating ideas from our designers. Find out below!

Shop This Look

1. Prioritize Comfy Seating

Casual and comfortable seating that’s no frills and easy to clean is key to a functional family room. It’s similar to any living room furniture except you want to opt for larger scale pieces with comfy proportions that invite the whole family to lounge and spend time together in the space. Plus, family rooms often have media, so you want the most comfortable seating for watching TV and movies. Think a wide sectional with the chaise and ottoman, extra poufs, and plush side chairs or reclining armchairs. It’s all about creating a homey and welcoming environment.

Because it’s a space that gets a lot of use, especially if there are kids, having upholstered furniture in durable fabrics is essential. You’ll want to look for performance materials that are stain resistant and easy to clean, slipcovers you can toss into the wash, and quality leather that can stand up to wear over time.

family room designed for tv viewing

Shop This Look

2. Center Seating Around Technology

If the family room is primarily used for watching TV and movies, arrange your seating around the media area for ease. By centering your main seating with your TV, it optimizes the space with a family friendly layout that’s designed for practical everyday use.

Additionally, just because the TV is centered in the room doesn’t mean that it has to look like an electronics focused space. Add a media console that elevates the look of your TV or if you’re pressed for space, hang a flatscreen on your wall and surround it with cool art for a more balanced look.

Check out our TV viewing layouts for other family room decorating ideas that seamlessly incorporate media.

 

Shop This Look

3. Make It Personal

A family room is a ‘family’ space, so it should feel personal and not overly prescriptive or precious. Adding personal touches will help make your family room feel more inviting while still keeping an elevated look and serving all your practical daily needs.

Consider incorporating family photos, mementos from travels, and even artwork and crafts from the kids. Some tried-and-true family room decorating ideas like a gallery wall of black-and-white personal photos or a bookcase filled with favorite heirlooms and objects are always guaranteed to bring a touch of personality and flair.

If you’re at a loss for family room ideas that feel ‘you’, you can always start by adding a few of your favorite books, a few plants, or a grouping of small accents on a tray on the coffee table.

Family room with work area

Shop This Look

4. Create Spaces for the Whole Fam

The family room is meant to be a gathering spot for everyone in the house, including the kids and pets. So it’s important to factor in every person’s needs for the most family friendly space.

Consider different areas for each person when everyone uses the space at the same time. You don’t want everyone competing for the best spot on the sectional, so be sure to have several comfy spots for lounging.

That means taking into consideration how each family member would use the space—which can be a cozy reading chair for dad, a place for books for mom, a play area for the kids or the perfect corner for a pet bed for Fido (also see: pet-friendly design tips.) And if your family room functions as a multipurpose space for homeschooling or computer games, be sure to carve out spaces for those too.

Shop This Look

5. Pile on Layers of Comfort

You can never have too many pillows and throw blankets in the family room. After all, it always comes down to extra layers of comfort that can be shared by everyone in the family room.

Beyond comfort, layering pillows not only adds style and pattern, it also brings texture and warmth to your seating area. Try starting with a mix of three to five pillows for your sectional, then add in one or two throw blankets at each end. You can also take it one step further with a basket full of throw blankets for guests or for when the whole family piles onto the sectional for a movie night.

Family room with kid safe furniture

Shop This Look

6. Kid Proof With Soft Edges

When it comes to kid friendly family room decorating ideas, proofing your space with furniture that have rounded edges and soft surfaces is top priority.

Look for upholstered ottomans and curvy chairs that don’t have sharp corners, and pad the floor with cozy rugs that are gentle on the feet and soft enough for little ones to crawl and lay out on. This keeps the family room safe for babies, toddlers, and kids across all ages to comfortably lounge and play.

Need help finding the right pieces for your family room? Take a peek at our top picks for kid-friendly coffee tables and the best rugs for kids and pets.

Family room with play area

Shop This Look

7. Set Up a Fun Zone

In a busy household with children, you can make the most of your family room by carving out a kid-friendly play space for games, crafts, and even homework. It’s one of the most practical multipurpose family room ideas, because it doubles the function of the space and provides a perfect setup that lets you keep an eye on the kids while relaxing.

How you decorate your kids’ fun zone is up to you. You can try adding some playroom elements to start, like a kids table, easel or toy chest if your kids are too young for family games. And you can ground it all with a soft rug that they can comfortably play on. You can find more inspiring ideas with our kid-friendly design tips.

Family room with bold colors

Shop This Look

8. Don’t Shy From Color

Most family room ideas revolve around practical neutral furniture. But we’re here to encourage the opposite. Make it a point to liven up your family room with colorful accents, such as a patterned rug, bright pillows, vibrant accent chairs and poufs, and eye-catching art.

In a room where functionality is often the focus, having bursts of color and pattern is the quickest way to add personality and style. And if you’re worried about having too much color, just remember you can always swap out these small accents each season with new shades or neutrals. And if neutral is your go-to palette, you can still add texture and depth with textiles, which will have the same warming effect as colors.

family room with playful accent furniture

Shop This Look

9. Add Playful Accent Furniture

Beyond functional family room ideas, leave room to have a little fun with your design of the space. Playful accent furniture, like a casual hanging chair, pretty patterned poufs on the floor or a stylish home bar cabinet, make for unexpected touches that instantly liven up a family room. These also help set your space up for casual hangouts, no matter the occasion. If kids or teenagers use the family room to hang with friends, these will ensure you have a space that’s fun, functional, and relaxing to hang out in.

Family room with cozy reading nook

Shop This Look

10. Carve out a Reading Nook

Give yourself a cozy place to sit and read in the family room. You can easily create a reading nook by adding an armchair in a corner or alongside a bookcase. Just be sure to round out your reading space with other accents, like a side table, floor lamp, and a throw pillow and blanket.

For those days when you just want to curl up with a good book instead of tuning into a show, a cozy reading nook can feel like the most comforting hideaway. And when it comes to family room ideas that are stylish, functional, and inspire a bit of escapism, none come close to a reading nook with a deep armchair designed for hours of comfy lounging.

Family room with extra seating

Shop This Look

11. Bring in the Extra Seating

There’s no better use for poufs, benches, and comfy ottomans than in a family room setting. They provide extra seating around the space for entertainment, but they can also conveniently work as footrests and impromptu surfaces.

The best part is that they all make for moveable seating that can be pushed off to the side or pulled in for use in the family room at any time. If you’re pressed for space, you can also try using poufs and benches in place of a coffee table. Versatility is what makes sets these hardworking accent seats apart!

Family room with light curtains for added sunlight

Shop This Look

12. Consider Curtains for Light

How comfortable your family room feels also depends on how much light it gets. The best way to control the light in your space is to hang curtains on all your family room windows.

Try adding layered window treatments, like blinds that filter in some rays when you want a little natural light shining through. Or if you prefer less light because your windows face the sun during the day, blackout curtains will do the trick nicely. Plus, nothing is more frustrating than trying to watch a movie and light from the windows create a glare that makes it impossible to see anything on the screen. Having curtains that are just thick enough to block out a good amount of light will help; and the same heavy curtains will also provide a warmer look in your space at night.

Family room with lots of surface areas

Shop This Look

13. Keep Surfaces Within Reach With Accent Tables

Don’t forget to also bring in small surfaces to go in your seating area. Accent tables, like poufs and ottomans, are workhorses in a family room. They’re perfect surfaces for holding snacks, drinks, remotes, books, and even a vase of flowers. And best of all, they’re highly functional, moveable, and don’t take up a ton of floor space.

While you don’t need half a dozen small tables crowding up your family room, you do want at least two or three mini ones that you can easily pull up next to your sofa or side chairs. Consider small end tables, like C-tables, nesting rounds or a small drinks table, to ensure there are plenty of surfaces where you can set things down.

Family room with closed storage

Shop This Look

14. Make Room for Big Storage

Out of all our practical family room ideas, having a large closed storage piece ranks second only to comfortable seating. Whether it’s a sideboard that doubles as a media stand or a console cabinet that also serves as your home bar, a piece with ample storage will help keep your family room organized and clutter free.

For instance, a cabinet under your TV is the best place to store all your wires and electronics, while also providing room for extra books, throws, candles, and other living room essentials. And in a busy space like the family room, you’ll love having closed storage that keeps all the little things out of sight. If you’re struggling to find the right piece, we’ve rounded up the best home storage to get your started.

Need help decorating your family room?

Start Your Project

how-to-add-color-to-a-white-room16

No Paint Required: 15 Easy Ways to Add Color to Your Room Without Painting

The most common design dilemma Modsy designers encounter is how to add color to a room. It makes sense, because color brings a space to life and gives it a personal touch that feels ‘you’.

Color is also one of the easiest and most effective ways to change the mood of a space. Painting a room is probably the fastest and boldest way to add color, but what if that’s off the table because you rent? Or what if you’re just not ready to commit to painting a whole room? What’s the best way then to add pops of color in small ways then?

Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. Here, we break down some stylish ways to liven up your spaces with color—no paint required!

But First… How to Think About Adding Color to Your Room

Landing on a color palette, pairing or combination can be tricky. Where do you even start and how do you know what colors work well together?

Before anything, consider how to choose a color palette that’s right for you and your space. From there, choose a base color scheme to build on top of. To help you get started, here are a few ways to add color using three common base color schemes.

blue patterned rug in white room

How to add color to a white room

White rooms are blank canvases, so you really can’t go wrong no matter your color approach. But it’s important to consider the view outside your space, as those colors will add to the overall palette and look of your room, so be sure to keep that in mind when adding color.

How to add color to a neutral room

Neutrals tend to feel more organic and earthy, so keep to a few tones for more cohesiveness. Colors with earthy undertones, like browns, stone grays, and beiges, will complement neutrals nicely. Keep to the palette and avoid bright and saturated colors, like neons and jewel tones.

Yellow sectional in white room

How to add color to a black-and-white room

Black-and-white spaces have an innate boldness to them, since they bring together two high-contrast shades. You’ll want to factor this into your color approach. The good thing about a black-and-white room is that it can support many different pops of color. Just make sure to consider how many colors you want to add first. If you go with too many, it can make your room feel overwhelming. Start with two (at most three) colors to layer on top of a black-and-white room.

If you’re feeling bold and want to paint your space, here’s what you need to know before painting a room. Be sure to also check out these neutral paint colors to try, or you might find

some paint inspiration from our popular living room color schemes.

Otherwise, keep reading for our tips on adding color to rooms (without a paintbrush!)

 

blue patterned rug in white room

Shop This Look

1. Play Up Pillows & Throws

Easy, affordable, and low-commitment, try adding color with throw blankets and decorative pillows. You can start with neutral pillows, then add a few pops of color, or you can go all in with a bunch of colorful pillows.

Colorful pillows and throws are also great because you can swap them out seasonally to change up the look in your space. Just switch up the pillow covers with new colors and stow away the blankets and cushions you’re not using each season.

Shop This Look

2. Hang Some Wall Art

Art is a simple and no-brainer way to add color to a space in the home. It not only creates a colorful focal point on your walls, but it also helps liven up the mood in a room of blank walls.

You can take two routes with colorful art: Invest in an original paint or print, or you can style up more affordable art in a stylish picture frame. Just be sure that the colors of your artwork tie back to the palette in the rest of your room. If you’re putting money behind a large art piece, we suggest making it the sole focus on a large wall. On the other hand, if you’re opting for affordable prints, try grouping several together in different picture frames for a gallery wall arrangement.

Shop This Look

3. Try Putting Up a Tapestry

A more traditional way to bring color into a room is through fabric wall hangings and tapestries. This is another non-committal approach to color since you can easily swap out the hangings with the seasons or as your taste changes.

Contrary to what most people think, tapestries are relatively inexpensive, so you can go in on several pieces that can line up beautifully together. They usually have ornate colors and look to them, so try to balance your tapestries with more classic furnishings.

Shop This Look

4. Install Pretty Curtains

Stylish draperies don’t get enough credit for how much they can transform rooms. Make it a point to choose a set of pretty and bold curtains to instantly add color to a space. And not only that, they also provide practical function by adding privacy and insulation.

If draperies feel daunting, remember that you can always change them up. Try starting with solid colors or geometric patterns, which are easy to work with and often more affordable. Also check out our tips on how to choose curtains.

plants bringing color to a white room

Shop This Look

5. Bring in Lots of Plants

Whether faux or real, greenery and indoor plants are one of our favorite ways to introduce color and texture into rooms. They bring an organic look to spaces while also providing fresh air and lifting the overall mood in a space. (We know for a fact that plants make people happy!)

You can start with leafy potted plants for small doses of green hues. Or if you’re ready to go big, bring in a few tall trees and plants. Of course, there are plants in all shades of colors, so definitely look around for ones that play well with your room’s palette.

And even if you’re not one for lots of color, plants are a great way to brighten up a minimalist space without breaking from the spare aesthetic.

Shop This Look

6. Arrange Fresh Flowers

You can buy fresh flowers almost anywhere and they’re guaranteed to add pretty color and life to a space. It’s the simplest way to bring a burst of color to the entryway, kitchen, bedroom or even bathroom counter.

Try experimenting with different flower arrangements for new color combinations each week or month. If you really like how certain colors or flowers look in your space, you can splurge a bit and buy faux flowers for that space instead to keep it feeling bright and cheery all the time.

Shop This Look

7. Layer Colorful Bedding

You can make a huge impact with colorful bed linens, bedspread, and a duvet cover. The best part about adding colorful bedding is that it’s already a practical purchase, and you can stock up with a few different sets so you can easily change up the look when needed.

Consider seasonality when shopping for colorful bedding: You may want a solid duvet as well as a patterned one so you can have two looks during the winter. Likewise, it can be practical to have a bedspread in a pretty hue along with a printed one for summer.

If you’re unsure about color in the bedroom, try a few colorful pillows and a throw blanket. But if you love it though, we say go all in with a mix of bright and bold bedding and pillows.

bright green headboard in white room

Shop This Look

8. Opt for an Upholstered Bed

Want a bolder touch of color in your bedroom? Skip the wood or metal bed frame and go for an upholstered one in an eye-catching color!

An upholstered headboard opens up a whole new realm of color possibilities. You can lean into deep jewel tones, which will add a glamorous and dramatic look, or you can look to softer pastel hues for a more soothing look. But because it’s a bigger commitment and investment, first make sure if an upholstered bed is right for you. If yes, you can count on it being a piece of furniture that adds major style and color in the bedroom, even if everything else is neutral.

Shop This Look

9. Pull in Colorful Dining Chairs

A set of colorful dining chairs is a surefire way to brighten up any dining space. It works because it adds a bright pop of color in a practical and stylish way.

Committing to bold dining chairs can feel like a big investment. If you aren’t sure how long you want to keep your dining room palette, test it out with a pair of extra side chairs to add color that you can easily move in and out of the space. Or you can try out colorful slipcovers for your chairs to see how it looks and feels. The key is making sure you choose chairs in a color you love.

Shop This Look

10. Add a Bold Ottoman

In a living room, you can always add color with a small (or large) upholstered ottoman. Whether you choose one that functions as a coffee table or a pair that serves as extra seating, they’re perfect accents for providing a colorful touch. Start with a solid color ottoman for a piece that’s easy to decorate around, or if your style is a little bolder, go with a patterned design.

Shop This Look

11. Roll out a Vibrant Rug

Bring a fresh perspective to rooms with a patterned rug that adds pops of color from the ground up. Because this adds color on a large scale, you’ll want to make sure you choose a rug that has a palette you can easily pull into the rest of the decor in your room. Think rugs with traditional patterns or black-and-white geometrics, or fun flatweaves.

However, keep in mind that colorful rugs will always feel bold no matter the size or style of your room. So to balance it out, you can always layer a colorful rug over a neutral rug, like a jute or sisal, which will feel less bold but still pack a punch with color.

Yellow sectional in white room

Shop This Look

12. Go for a Statement Sofa

To add color that makes a statement, anchor your living room with a colorful sofa. It’s a daring approach to color that’s always stylish, and it instantly changes the look and feel in a living space.

Because a colorful sofa is an expensive investment pieces, make sure you choose a color you love and one that has staying power. Some bright sofa colors that are surprisingly timeless are navy, mustard, soft pink, and emerald green. Pick one that you feel matches your aesthetic and you can easily mix with other furnishings and decor in your style.

Shop This Look

13. Set Out Bright Accents

Use small accents to add color, like a bowl for lemons and fruits, a vase for flowers or a tray for colorful books and objects. It’s a fun way to make use of items you already have in your decor to bring a colorful touch to surfaces. Think of it as getting creative with grouping different colorful items, like a row of pretty painted ceramics or a bowl of Christmas ornaments. How you style it is up to you!

bright green ottomon in white room

Shop This Look

14. Make Room for a Pouf

Like an ottoman, a pouf is a stylish and functional way to add color to the living room or bedroom. A single colorful pouf is large enough to have an impact on a space without overwhelming the room with color or taking up too much floor space.

You can also opt for smaller poufs in bright colors, which lets you stack and stow them as needed. Try having a few pillows that complement your pouf’s colors for a more cohesive look.

bright orange leather chairs in white room

Shop This Look

15. Display Captivating Books

And last but not least, don’t forget your books! If you have coffee table books with pretty spines, show them off on a bookcase or built-in-shelving. They’ll make for fun pops of color that function like wall art and decor. Or you can also arrange your books by color, which also makes for an impactful look. It’s another easy way to spice up your space with something you likely already have!

Browse our gallery for more ways to add color!

Ready to add color in your home?

Start Your Project

modern-traditional-decor12

Opposites Attract: 15 Ways to Make Modern Traditional Design Work

You’ve heard that opposites attract, right? Well, it’s just as true in style as in love! We get asked how to combine modern and traditional furniture all the time. So many people want to know how to merge these two styles without their space looking jumbled and confused. Other people wonder if it’s even possible for these two styles to co-exist!

So, can you mix modern and traditional styles? Absolutely. And there’s not one right way to do it. Unlike more “pure” styles like mid-century modern or bohemian, modern traditional decor can take on many different looks and be done in so many ways. Of course, endless possibilities can feel overwhelming. So, today we’re sharing 15 tips on how to bring a modern traditional home to life! Find the looks you love below and use the tips to bring modern traditional style into your space!

Shop This Look

1. Go for a Traditional Layout

Symmetrical layouts are a huge part of traditional decor. Embracing this design principle in your room’s design can give your space a traditional feel, even if the furniture is not super classic. In this space, the furniture leans more contemporary, with hints of traditional design elements balanced by sleek forms. However, the symmetrical layout gives the room a formal air and feels very traditional. This is a simple, sneaky way to merge modern and traditional design.

You could also do the opposite and arrange traditional furniture in an asymmetrical layout!

Shop This Look

2. Remix Traditional Forms

Look for furniture that has traditional silhouettes or classic-inspired shapes but that have been remixed in a fresh and modern way, with clean, sleek lines. Pieces wrought-iron beds are a staple of classic design. But if you want to blend modern and traditional decor, you can take the idea of a classic piece and give it a modern facelift by removing ornate details and going for a cleaner silhouette. The bed pictured here was brought to life in a more contemporary, streamlined form—making it feel both modern and traditional at the same time.

Shop This Look

3. Layer Traditional Furniture Over a Modern Rug

A great way to create a modern traditional living room or bedroom? Choosing more traditional furniture forms, but layering a modern rug beneath. In this bedroom, we paired a bold, geometric rug (that feels decidedly modern) with a traditional four-poster bed. The combination works because the other decor in the room is relatively simple, letting these two statement pieces do the talking.

 

modern traditional decor with vibrant rug

Shop This Look

4. Ground Mod Furniture With a Vintage Rug

On the other hand, you could also start with modern furniture, paired with a vintage-inspired rug! (The approach you take simply depends on if you’re more drawn to modern or traditional furniture forms.) Vintage patterns, like what you see on the rug above, makes a big statement in a room—helping set the tone of the whole space and balancing out the contemporary furniture.

Shop This Look

5. Insert Traditional Staples

There are certain pieces of furniture that are touchstones of traditional design—slipcovered sofas and wingback chairs being two staples. Integrating iconic pieces like these in an otherwise modern space is a perfect way to bridge the gap between old and new, traditional and modern.

In this living room, a slipcovered sofa and wingback chair are the foundational pieces, but everything else—from the wall color to the clean lines of the other furniture pieces—leans modern. You can modernize even further by opting for traditional pieces with a more streamlined, less ornate shape. (Like we mentioned in our second tip, above!) Here, both traditional pieces have cleaner lines, making them feel both modern and traditional at the same time.

Shop This Look

6. Bridge the Divide With Natural Materials

Modern design can feel very futuristic. In a modern space, you’ll see a lot of manufactured materials, like tubular steel, plastics, and plywood, which were born out of the Industrial Age. In contrast, traditional design is much older and uses more natural and hand-crafted materials like wood and leather. That may make the divide between modern and traditional styles feel wide—but the use of woven natural materials can help bridge the gap! Soft, woven materials like jute, sisal, seagrass, or cane add texture and create a neutral backdrop that helps modern and traditional pieces coexist. Think of these materials as the glue that holds these two disparate styles together!

Shop This Look

7. Apply Traditional Materials to Modern Forms

Like we just mentioned, traditional interior design uses more natural materials—like wood, wool, leather, and cloth—than modern design. So, a fun way to blend modern and traditional design styles is to look for pieces that use traditional materials but in very modern forms.

This dining table for example—it features gorgeous wood with live-edge detailing. This kind of wood especially, where you can see the character and graining, is decidedly traditional. But the simplicity of the design and the sleek metal legs feel very modern. The modern elements are then balanced out by the rest of the decor, which leans more elegant and classic.

Shop This Look

8. Opt for Antique Forms Rendered in Modern Materials

The inverse approach to the suggestion above? Keeping your forms more traditional and antique-inspired, but giving them an update through the materials with which they’re made. This is a fun way to juxtapose old and new within a single piece of furniture.

In this design, we brought this idea to life through both the sofas and the side tables. Pedestal side tables are a classic move in traditional spaces—but here, instead of wood, these tables are made of brass. (And they have a more modern foot design as well!) And then there are the sofas. They have a classical camelback shape, with a fully visible wooden base and bench seat—all typical elements of antique sofas. But the seaglass velvet upholstery? It’s decidedly modern, bringing these sofas into the 21st century with ease. (And a whole lot of style.)

Shop This Look

9. Insert an Iconic Modern Piece

Tulip tables were originally designed by industrial designer and architect Eero Saarinen in the 1950s. And since then, this dining table style has become an iconic symbol of modern design. When creating a modern traditional dining room, we love the idea of pairing an iconic design staple like this with other pieces that feel decidedly traditional, like these cane dining chairs. This is certainly a more eclectic approach to combining these two styles—but we think it’s a fun and bold way to mix eras and styles!

Shop This Look

10. Balance Traditional Foundations with Modern Accents

Something that will make a space lean traditional is choosing foundational furniture that has traditional design elements—like weathered wood, turned legs, or molding on cabinets. But we love balancing out these old-school moments with more contemporary and streamlined accents. Here, we started with a large, traditional cabinet and a weathered wood desk but balanced them out with a sleek desk chair and clean, transitional lighting. Keeping the color palette neutral but high contrast is the perfect way to blend transitional and traditional styles for a look that feels truly timeless.

Shop This Look

11. Go Modern in Your Core Furniture and Traditional in Your Accents

Some people love the sleek, clean lines of modern furniture—but they still crave moments of traditionally inspired design. If this is the case for you, ground your space in traditional style by laying down an antique or vintage-inspired rug. Since rugs cover so much space, it helps set the tone for a room. You can then layer in pops of traditional accent furniture and decor throughout—say, through a side table, antique painting, or more traditional light fixture. This is also a great approach if you want to decorate with antiques in a modern space.

modern traditional decor with green walls and upholstered bed

Shop This Look

12. Stick With Minimal Surface Styling

The way to make sure neither modern or traditional moments in a room talk too loudly? Minimal surface styling. (Like we did here, with this nightstand.) By keeping things simple but stylish, you can let the larger pieces in your room sit in the spotlight and set the style tone for the room. However, when using this approach, opt for highly textured elements like a ribbed vase, greenery, or a lamp with detailing for more of a visual impact.
modern traditional decor with deep blue walls

Shop This Look

13. Seek Scalloped Designs

There are certain motifs that feel very traditional—and scallops are one of them. So, even small uses of a scalloped form, like the scalloped mirror and side table in this living room, can make a contemporary space feel slightly more traditional. When you pair these visual elements with more modern or contemporary furniture, you get a look that effortlessly mixes the past with the present.

Shop This Look

14. Add An Eclectic Touch In Decor

If you prefer traditionally inspired furniture, but want to make sure your room feels like it was designed in the 21st century, add a touch of the eclectic in your decor. Abstract artwork or an eclectic collection of pillows and small decor pieces add a little personality and quirkiness to a traditional space. Just make sure you keep the color palette consistent so the eclectic pieces don’t feel random.

modern traditional decor with velvet sofas

Shop This Look

15. Hang a Tapestry (Or Other Traditional-Inspired Art)

Another great way to add some traditional balance to a modern space? Hanging traditional wall art. Tapestries are a favorite way to do this; tapestries are a medium that originates from the middle ages and they add an old-world feel to any space. Bonus points if your tapestry features one of our current favorite trends: botanical motifs. However, if a tapestry feels a little too old-school, you could also go for a more traditional painting or print—say, a landscape painting, a still life featuring a vase of flowers, or an antique-inspired portrait.

Want some help acing the modern traditional decor look?

Start Your Project

eye-candy6

12 Tips for Designing a Timeless Home

You’ve probably heard the phrase “timeless interior design” used to describe homes. But what exactly makes a timeless home?

The timeless look often brings to mind images of classic and traditional interiors, but it’s so much more than that. While there may be furniture and decor with a clean-lined classic look, the idea of a timeless home comes down to a space that has lasting appeal and style. Think designs made with quality materials that stand the test of time, patterns that never go out of style, colors that blend with any decor, and furniture that have tried-and-true silhouettes.

Even so, it can be difficult to put the idea of timeless style into practice in your spaces. To help with that, we’ve rounded up our top designer tips to inspire you to create a timeless design aesthetic in your own home.

What is Timeless Interior Design?

To sum it up, timeless design is a look that’s not tied to any specific era, design movement, or trend. In fact, it exists outside of the trend cycle but it always feels fresh and stylish.

That means timeless interiors are often designed with versatility and flexibility in mind so that it can evolve seamlessly over time—they shouldn’t be so rigid that you can’t change anything in these spaces. A great example of this? All the interiors from Nancy Meyers’ films: They’re comfortable, welcoming, and full of style and personality without feeling dated. It’s easy to see why even interior designers love getting inspiration from Meyers’ movies.

Keep reading to get our easy tips to create a timeless design look in your home!

Shop This Look

1. Choose Furniture With Clean Lines

Opt for foundation furniture with simple forms, which will always stay in style. Upholstered seating, tables, and large furniture that have clean lines never feel dated or “over”, and they have sophisticated looks that will work with furnishings and decor in any style over time.

Adding furniture with detail, like a sofa or chair with turned legs or a table with ornamentation, isn’t a no-go, nor is picking furniture from a specific era. But if you’re going for timeless appeal, try to keep to furniture that doesn’t have too many flourishes that reference specific design eras.

airy and timeless living room

Shop This Look

2. Look to Classic Silhouettes

You can’t go wrong with designs that have classic and traditional silhouettes. These include furniture, such as a tufted sofa, a farmhouse dining table, wingback chairs, and the ottoman coffee table. They feature shapes that have stood the test of time, so they’ll never go out of style. Not to mention, they’re foundational pieces for timeless interior design.

Anchoring a room with one of these pieces is an easy way to instantly create a timeless look. Or you can also group several of these tried-and-true silhouettes together in a seating area. Either way, always start with larger furniture pieces with a classic shape to ground a space.

Shop This Look

3. Keep Your Tones Neutral

If you’re looking for a color palette you can easily create a timeless design aesthetic around, stick to neutral hues. Neutrals are your friend because they will work with any style of furniture and interior. It’s a color scheme that can unify different design elements.

The neutral approach holds true for walls and floor finishes as well, so keep these to white or wood tones. It will allow you to incorporate new colors seasonally through pillows, drapery, and rugs. If you want more color, leaning into earth tones is a safe bet! These saturated warm colors bring in colors from nature and they can add some oomph but won’t trend out over time.

rustic and classic living room

Shop This Look

4. Layer Natural Textures

A timeless home is often rooted in quality natural materials, drawing inspiration for furniture and decor from nature and our surroundings. So play up natural elements, such as wood, stone, linen, and greenery in your spaces, which make for universally timeless touches.

Try to steer clear of engineered and highly polished materials that can signal specific design styles or eras, such as acrylic or Lucite (Retro ’80s vibes), tubular steel (Industrial Modern feeling) or even colorful velvet (Hollywood Glam for days!). Keeping to natural materials will prevent your interior from leaning into any particular design aesthetic too much, ensuring a timeless look for years to come.

 

living room in timeless style

Shop This Look

5. Consider Less Is More

A timeless home is not just about the style of design you bring in. Yes, it’s about investing in the right furniture that will last for decades, but it’s also about having fewer decor pieces that keep clutter at a minimum over time. When your rooms are too layered or overly styled, it starts feeling more maximalist, which is a popular look that many people love, but it has a more eclectic look.

Keeping that in mind, resist the urge to fill every corner and pile your surfaces with accents. A well-curated and organized space is just as important as having clean-lined furniture when it comes to a timeless look.

Shop This Look

6. Blend Old With New

Mixing vintage and antique pieces with new furniture is a key tenet of timeless interior design. The old-meets-new combination ensures that your space spans many decades instead of looking like it’s referencing one design style or era.

Look for vintage pieces that have a classic look and mix it with some clean-lined modern pieces. The streamlined look of the furniture will blend nicely together. Try to avoid combining opposing design styles, which will end up looking more eclectic. If you need a little guidance, check out our tips mixing antiques into modern spaces

Shop This Look

7. Work in Traditional Patterns

Classic patterns like gingham, stripes, plaid, damask, and toile are popular among interior designers for a reason—they instantly provide a timeless interior design look. They also never go out of fashion, which is why they’ve been used for years and years in traditional and classic interiors.

The trick to decorating with these traditional patterns is to add them through accents, which will allow them to shine without feeling stuffy or overly refined and formal. In small doses, they’ll feel both old and new at the same time.

Classic and timeless eceltic living room

Shop This Look

8. Skip the Trends

The one seems obvious, but it’s worth repeating. Trends are fun and can breathe new life into a space but they usually are the opposite of timeless. If you’re committing to create a timeless design look, pieces that feel trendy—like the edgy industrial side chair or the sculpture-like floor lamp—are guaranteed to feel dated over time. Keep your furniture classic and clean-lined.

All that is not to say you can’t play at all with trends. Just do it in smaller ways, like a pillow with a stylish or unique pattern that you can easily swap out or an of-the-moment art piece you can replace with something down the line.

Shop This Look

9. Add Built-Ins (Or Fake Them)

When it comes to large-scale design elements, built-ins have timeless appeal by default. They’ve been used in homes for decades (if not centuries) and they always bring a classic look to rooms.

If your home doesn’t come with built-ins or if it’s not in your budget, try faking the look with a series of floor-to-ceiling bookshelves. Then style them minimally with decor inspired by nature (to nod to natural materials) along with neutral accents (for an airier look). A balance of practical items, like baskets and trays, with decorative accessories is key for a tastefully styled built-in.

Shop This Look

10. Hide Your Technology

With any timeless interior, the furniture and decor is the main focus of the space. So try to avoid putting electronics and technology front and center in the room if you can. Find a way to conceal (or disguise) large TVs, stereos, and wires, whether it’s within a media cabinet or keeping it to an entertainment room. This will help to bring a more elevated, timeless feel to your space without taking away from having technology in our lives.

Office with timelass transitional style

Shop This Look

11. Aim for Quality Pieces

High-quality furnishings are essential if you want to create a timeless design look. This means durable pieces made with quality materials that have staying power and can stand the test of time.

While your furnishings don’t all have to be investment pieces, they should all feature exceptional craftsmanship and design that’s visible. These can include a well-made wooden desk and a tightly upholstered chair or sofa or a handwoven rug. They are sure to outlast more trendy pieces that can wear easily and quickly cycle out after a few years.

glam, eclectic, and timeless living room

Shop This Look

12. Follow Your Muse!

Last but not least, what truly makes a timeless home is a space you’ll love for years to come. So the most important rule is to decorate your home to be a comfortable and inspiring place you love spending time in.

You shouldn’t feel the pressure to design your interiors based on what Pinterest, influencers or magazines say is on-trend. Be your own muse and follow your instincts to choose pieces you absolutely love living with. This will ensure the space you create is one you love and that will always be timeless

Browse our gallery for more timeless interior design inspiration!

Try On A Timeless Look In Your Home

Start Your Project

image10-191

Meet The Designer: Talking Twilight, Natural Textures, and the Bauhaus Movement with Shelly Sutton

The Modsy design network is full of individuals with incredibly diverse backgrounds. Some are formally trained, some are self-taught, and many had established careers in a totally different industry before making their way into the world of interior design. (Kind of like some of our favorite interior designers outside of the Modsy world!) We want to introduce you to some of our talented designers—to help you get to know the people behind the screens!

Want to work one-on-one with one of our talented designers to decorate your home? Start a Modsy design project and get matched with an expert who will show you designs in your exact space in 3D!

Today, we’d like to introduce Modsy designer, Shelly!

Shelly Sutton discovered the world of interior design as a teen and has had a ferocious passion for it ever since. She loves the way that color, texture, and natural elements can breathe life and balance into any room and believes that the best rooms are functional as well as beautiful.

Shelly is an innovative thinker and problem-solver who loves the diversity of both the design process and each design project (we’re lucky to have her on the team!). She enjoys taking time to understand her clients’ individual needs, making the design process simple and enjoyable for them.

We (virtually) sat down with Shelly to hear more about how she started her design career, the design tips she swears by, and where she finds inspiration.

living room blue couch baskets plant

Design by Shelly in Modsy 3D

How did you get into the interior design industry?

“I was 13 years old the first time I was really inspired by design. I went to a model home near our house that I grew up in,” says Shelly. “I remember loving everything I saw and really paying attention to the different furniture and textures.” She went back more than once because it made her so happy to see such beautiful, thoughtful design and it became a source of inspiration. “I would imagine it being mine, thinking through what changes I would make. I would go home and try to implement some of the design choices in my room.”

But beyond a personal love for interior design, Shelly also has a diverse background that informs her designs today. During undergrad, she started out as a psychology major, then she studied photography and graphic design at the Art Institute before finding her calling in interior design. “I went to the Harrington Institute of Interior Design and got my formal education there,” says Shelly.

 

grey living room beige ottoman

One of Shelly’s stunning Modsy 3D designs

How did you find yourself at Modsy?

“I saw an opening for Modsy online and was intrigued by the whole idea of online interior design,” says Shelly. “It’s definitely the way of the future. Once I got the job and went through the training, I was blown away by the software. I was completely enthralled by the technology and approach Modsy takes to design.”

Shelly has worked at Modsy for the past two years and loves how she gets to blend art and science in her work. “Modsy is perfect because it brings together all of those different aspects I studied into one discipline,” says Shelly. (You might be surprised just how much overlap there is between psychology and interior design—in fact, there’s a whole field of study called environmental psychology!)

Shelly loves the work she does with clients through Modsy. “This work is definitely my passion,” says Shelly. “It doesn’t feel like work most of the time.”

A peek inside Shelly’s “timeless with a twist” living room

How would you describe your personal design style?

“I would consider my style timeless with a twist,” says Shelly. “I like spaces to have a bit of an edge.” She likes to combine unexpected elements, so she formally falls into the eclectic camp. “I love pairing modern elements with unexpected pieces—like, items you wouldn’t normally think would go together,” she says. “That unexpected layering adds so much soul to a space.”

dark grey dining room pattern rug

Shelly’s “dream room” designed in Modsy 3D

Shop This Look

Where do you get inspiration?

“I get really inspired by each of my clients,” says Shelly. She loves how each client’s project is so unique, and each person needs help solving a different problem through design. It gets her brain moving. “I enjoy being creative and helping provide solutions for them. That inspires me.”

“With one client, I was working on a space that was an 80s time warp with all these really quirky angles,” says Shelly. “The client wanted their room to become a zen, modern space. I had no idea how I was going to do it—but with some creative thinking, I was able to provide a solution that was what they were looking for.” She finds her creative spark in inspiration in meeting each client’s individual and unique project needs.

“It’s humbling to be able to solve problems for customers because that’s what they’re coming to Modsy for!”

Another of Shelly’s Modsy 3D designs

Do you have a favorite design era or movement?

“One of my favorites is the Modernist Bauhaus movement,” says Shelly. “I learned about it in design school and that was the era that really inspired me to get into design myself. In Bauhaus, there’s a ‘less is more’ concept that I really enjoy. They were so ahead of their time. If you look back at the styles they were creating in the 1920s, they are actually so current today—they’re more in-style today than they were back then!”

What is the secret ingredient that you think makes a good design into a great one?

“Layering textures and materials helps add so much dimension to a space,” says Shelly. “I love playing with different textures and patterns.”

contemporary dining room design with a glass table and black shell dining chairs

One of Shelly’s 3D Modsy designs

What are the 3 design tips you swear by?

  1. Pick a good paint color. Color is one of the most important design elements in a room. It can really make or break a space. And painting is one of the most cost-effective ways to design. You can completely transform a room just by choosing a new wall color or painting kitchen cabinets.
  2. Layer your lighting. Lighting is also really important—layered lighting, especially! Like paint, it can also make or break a space. You can have a beautiful design, but if the lighting isn’t right, the room won’t look as good as it could!
  3. Include some natural elements. I try to always add some sort of natural element to any space I design. That helps a space feel grounded and adds warmth. If you have a stark, modern room, simply adding a piece of driftwood adds character and soul to the room.

The Cullen’s Home in Twilight

What interior from a movie or TV show would you live in if you could?

“Don’t laugh! But my daughter was a major fan of the Twilight series, and I love the Hoke house, which is the house where the vampires, (AKA the Cullen family), lived. So, that’s what I liked about the movies! This house was so cool—it was cantilevered over a ravine and had all these floor-to-ceiling windows that highlighted this magnificent view. Some of the materials were kind of industrial, but it complimented the wooded surroundings so well. It was like a modern treehouse in the woods. It must be so beautiful in the fall!”

What’s your interior design pet peeve?

“Recliner sectionals. I shudder when people say they want to bring them into their designs. No offense—they’re just not for me!”

Shelly enjoying a much-deserved vacation in Thailand

What’s your favorite place to vacation?

“Any place with a beach! We went to Thailand a few years ago and I loved that. I’m kicking myself because we were so close to Bali and I didn’t go. Bali is definitely on my bucket list! I would really love to go there someday. But really, anywhere with a beach will do!”

What’s the last book you read and enjoyed?

“‘The Celestine Prophecy.’ It was given to me by my dad, I read it and it was really enlightening. I think every time you read it, you pick up something new, so I might actually read it again!”

What’s a fun fact about you?

“I love to wrap presents! I love crafting and being creative, but I especially love when I’m wrapping presents and giving gifts. People say they’re so beautiful they don’t want to open them!”

Want to work with a Modsy designer like Shelly to bring your dream room to life?

Start Your Project