Decorating For Dummies

Decorating For Dummies

The quick guide to finding your style.
| October 01, 2015

When it comes to decorating, men can often be complete dunces. Most don’t think beyond the basics of a couch, a coffee table and a big screen TV. As for interior decorating and finding a suitable, workable style, most only go so far as picking up their dirty socks and maybe applying a layer of paint or two to spruce up the place. Fortunately part of our mission here at ModernLook isn’t just to bring you beautiful, functional products, but to aid you in beautifying your home and simplifying the decorating process. 

Having a beautiful home is much more than just being clean and tidy. It’s about having a home whose style is a reflection of who you are. The best way to do that is so get familiar with various interior decorating styles, but since there are literally hundreds, we thought we’d break down some of the home decor looks most popular with the modern man.

Interior designer Suzanne Shaker helped architect Cary Tamarkin create the ultimate beach retreat on Shelter Island. Featuring Isamu Noguchi paper lanterns light the living room, and Hans Wegner lounge chairs. Photo: William Abranowicz, Courtesy of The Monacelli Press

In the living room of a remodel in Seattle, the fireplace was powder-coated orange to complement the vintage furnishings. Vintage pieces mix with contemporary items to give a new twist to Mid Century Modern. Photo by Kyle Johnson, courtesy of Dwell

If you’re into sleek lines, bold color play, understated luxury reminiscent of the TV series Mad Men then Mid-Century Modern is definitely the look for you. This is a look that says, “I have a decent job, but I’m not a snob,” and it’s the perfect environment to hang out and host friends, or enjoy an evening alone together.

Wooden surfaces, mono or duo-chromatic finishes, and geometric shapes are the staples of Modern style, and the perfect space for the man who needs only the basics, without any frivolous extras, but wants to make it clear to guests that he could certainly afford to have lots of knick-knacks. This is the space for the man who doesn’t have time for distractions. If you have an eye for modern, but a love for comfort, and not much space to work with, then industrial is the right look for you.

John Pawson is a British architectural designer whose work is known for its minimalist aesthetic. His Baron House is a testament to the style.

If you’re a believer in the old adage that “less is more”, then Minimalism is right up your alley. One or two colors, only the very basics in furniture, little to no accent pieces, and out-of-sight storage makes minimalism basically modern style on steroids. With minimalism, every piece you bring into your space should be considered and essential so you eliminate the clutter and distraction that often plagues your house.

If, however, you’re of the mindset that “more is more”, then Art Deco is the perfect look for you! This influential art and design movement first emerged in France after World Ware I and includes touches of French, Egyptian and Mediterranean culture. Here, geometric patterns mix with bold colors, metal finishes and dramatic lighting to create an interior reminiscent of living on the set of the “Great Gatsby”! Opulence is the name of the game!

For those who want a muted art deco feel in a space that you’d still feel comfortable allowing your friends to get drunk in, the traditionalist decor is the way to go. Dark woods and neutral colors are enhanced by rich fabrics such as silk to velvet, and unique accent pieces, to give your home a theatrical look with slightly less drama.

Stusiolise's collection for furniture brand De La Espada represents the craftsmanship and detailing characteristic of Shaker furniture while updating it for a modern audience.

If you’re a rugged guy with down-home sensibilities, though, the Shaker look is just what the style doctor ordered! All wood everything, neutral tones, and natural fabrics like cotton and wood make your home the perfect place to shoot an LL Bean fall catalogue, and put your feet up at the end of a long way. Because the whole point of home decor, at the end of the day, is to make your place the place you always want to go back to.


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