Introducing Modern Style to Traditional Decor

Speaking of introductions, we’d like to introduce you to our first Spark Style Q&A. We would love to feature your design questions and our sparkling suggestions. We hope to make this a regular feature post, so send your query to hello@sparkinteriors.com.

“What are some ways you can incorporate modern design elements into a living room that leans toward the traditional? I’m loving the modern trends I’m seeing, but I can’t afford to go all-out modern; I need to use some of the existing pieces I have. I would love to see some photo examples mixing some modern into an existing space that leans toward classic/traditional.”  ~ Erin

Modern Traditional Living Room from House Beautiful

Modern Traditional Living Room from House Beautiful

Misty Says: Even if you have a home with traditional architecture or furniture, you can add a modern twist to update the space. A very simple way to do so is with accessories. In this room, bright pillows and graphic art (all in hot pink!) bring a pop to an otherwise sophisticated room.

Bright and Modern Dining Room from House Beautiful

Bright and Modern Dining Room from House Beautiful

Another option is to add unexpected color with paint. The small bookcase was painted pink in the living room and the traditional dining chairs were updated with a fresh coat of lemon paint. Work with what you have using inexpensive techniques like paint and colorful accessories. When you do purchase long term furniture or upholstered pieces, select items with clean lines and classic shapes for the most versatility. Do not be afraid to mix styles (modern, vintage, traditional) and furniture pieces. Perfectly matching everything looks contrived and a bit too “pre-packaged”. Translation — yes, you can have a shabby vintage cupboard next to a chic glass table and a classic wing back chair.

Traditional Painting and Modern Credenza

Traditional Painting and Modern Credenza

Curlin Says: Purchase what you love…traditional, modern, ethnic…and have fun with the mix!  Your interior should reflect the journey you’ve been on.  Take a traditional piece and play with it…like the classic oil painting over the modern credenza (above).   Or take something modern like an acrylic coffee table and place one of your favorite antiques upon it.  It’s the juxtaposition of styles, both old and new, that keeps decor fresh and interesting.
Ashley Says: I love the idea of mixing modern with traditional. Place a fun, modern zebra rug on a traditional hickory wood floor. Place an industrial, stainless steel coffee table on the rug and next to a dainty tufted loveseat for a stark contrast.
Suburban Living Room with Modern Flair

Suburban Living Room with Modern Flair

Having a ball with succulents

Having a ball with succulents

These goofy Dr. Seuss-inspired baskets were a happy find while lunching at Morton Arboretum last week. They are filled with succulents, which includes many species most of which are really easy to propagate and grow. Here, they are absolutely loving the dappled shade provided by a pergola. Should you find yourself sans pergola, try hanging [...]

Grey, swing your partner…

Grey, swing your partner…

It’s tempting sometimes to think of the color grey in formal terms, but don’t get stuck there; Grey is a very versatile fellow. Here’s a perfect example of grey hanging loose with the sweatshirt and sneakers crowd.  This cheeky mix of blue and orange look turbo-charged in this image from Living Etc magazine. And for [...]

Ask and You Shall Receive (decorating tips, that is)

Ask and You Shall Receive (decorating tips, that is)

Help us help you! We want to know what your burning design questions are. What is tugging on the corner of your brain and keeping you up at night (only in the most extreme case, of course)? Maybe you can’t figure out how to arrange your mantle in an interesting way or you don’t know [...]

The Old Switcheroo Redux

The Old Switcheroo Redux

Switching it up gets you noticed! Switching the stone that makes up this retaining wall really made me look at it, and had me admiring the artistry involved in building it. It’s a modern take on an old standard. Note the small holes in the photo with vertically (another switch!)  placed limestone… those are weepholes, needed to let water drain [...]

Dashing Grey

Dashing Grey

On a recent trip to Maine, I fell head-over-heels-madly-in-love with the color grey. I couldn’t believe the rich assortment of greys that are just waiting to be plucked out of nature and applied in our interiors.  Grey is not a somber color…far from it.   It can be a calming, restful neutral in a room. [...]

More Welcome Thoughts!

More Welcome Thoughts!

When you walk up to your front door, what is the little voice in your head saying about what you see? Unless it’s “ahh, lovely”, consider adopting one or two of these sweet little somethings to support that all important sense of welcome! More Color. It’s the easiest thing to add, possibly the least costly [...]

Transform A Space Of Your Own

Transform A Space Of Your Own

When we bought our house 7 years ago, this was an unfinished space over the attic and I could see the possibilities for a little nest of my own. Below you’ll see the transformation into my studio.  It’s my space.  A little removed from the rest of my life and home.  A place where I [...]