Defining Interior Design Styles

A close examination of the defining individual elements of a space reveal the singular threads of style that run through each category of interior design, from contemporary to eclectic. Contemporary comes with clean lines, while traditional design carries depth and texture. Farmhouse interiors differ greatly from industrial design, although both make use of raw materials. Bohemian and eclectic styles are also widely different, despite sharing similarities. And a glamorous space is at once playful and sophisticated.


Defined by clean lines and a simple aesthetic, contemporary design is fresh, dynamic, of-the-moment, and, often, monochromatic. The ever-popular all-white kitchens are entirely contemporary, as are light-filled open floor plans. This design style continues to evolve while maintaining celebrated characteristics — think minimalism, sleek surfaces, linear architecture, and neutral color palettes, too. While minimalism can feel stark, it can also be peaceful and focused due to its simplicity and by creating sculpture in the mundane.

Contemporary design with modern finishes
Contemporary design is boldly reimagined with the incorporation of modern finishings in this kitchen, with its white-and-grey color scheme, open shelving, and mid-century-inspired elements.
Image: Reid Rolls Photography
A striking space that showcases contemporary design
Modern and contemporary designs share many of the same ingredients of design. This bathroom showcases a modern approach, while utilizing contemporary components.
Image: Nick McGinn


Timeless and elegant, traditional design is, generally, the most familiar style. Crafted with an emphasis on livability and sophistication, traditional spaces incorporate texture, depth, and boldness — without being stuffy nor boring. Hallmarks of traditional design hail from the 18th and 19th centuries with heavy European influence. This design style embraces antiques, built-in cabinets and molding, plush fabrics, and art.

Traditional, contemporary, traditional and more — design styles you need to know
Bringing traditional design style into the modern day, this space wisely mixes materials and textures. The result is a sophisticated space outfitted in timeless elegance.
Image: Andrea Behrends
Interior Design Styles Explained
Wallpaper has recently seen a resurgence (more on that later), and it remains a staple in traditional design. Here, every element works together to create a fresh, classic design.
Image: Andrea Behrends
Interior Design Styles Explained
Built-in cabinets paired with all-white surroundings illustrate a modern approach to traditional design.
Image: Andrea Behrends


A dominating trend in interior design style is the combination of contemporary and traditional styles. Traditional spaces can air on the side of formal, so modern pieces are incorporated to soften the space. In transitional design, the lines are blurry, and the rules aren’t clear — which makes it fun. Modern embellishments and traditional bones work together to create a cohesive look.

Transitional design decoded
Impactful contemporary art is an easy way to modernize a space and infuse personality and pops of purple play well against the neutral color palette. The design is contemporary while also traditional.
Image: Andrea Behrends
Clean lines and minimalist finishes in a picture-perfect kitchen
Clean lines and minimalist finishes blend with notes of traditional design, resulting in a contemporary kitchen that can stand the test of time.
Image: Andrea Behrends


Known for salvaged materials, rustic undertones, and reclaimed wood, farmhouses are warm, charming, and jam-packed with character. Farmhouse style remains a dominating décor trend, but today, designers take a refined approach to the well-worn design style.

What is your design style?
Exposed brick walls, warm wood floors, and a slider barn door evoke a farmhouse vibe in this hallway designed to accommodate a spot for the dogs to dine and a farmhouse sink for flower arranging.
Image: Andrea Behrends


A style reserved for the discerning homeowner, glamorous design is at once fashionable and luxurious. Splurge-worthy and statement-making art, materials, and furniture make up a glamorous space — whether it be the living room, bedroom, or dining area.

A glamorous space to call your own
Materials rich in texture and color introduce a touch of glamour to this otherwise industrial space.
Image: Andrea Behrends
a bathroom that screams glamor
A combination of black and grey introduces drama to any space, such as this bathroom. High-end finishes and luxe materials scream glamor.
Image: Andrea Behrends


Layered touches of color and texture come together unexpectedly in Bohemian design. The California cool, laid-back style celebrates creativity and incorporates a mix of materials, art, and color. Teals, pinks, and royal blues are colors commonly associated with this design style.

What is your design style?
The easiest expression of style is through art. For example, in this bohemian design, each piece was thoughtfully chosen as a representation of the homeowner’s style.
Image: Nick McGinn
Bohemian design reimagined
A space that combines various design styles, this bathroom falls under the category of bohemian thanks to the teal chandelier that hangs above the vanity.


An uptick in renovation of old warehouses has resulted in an uptick in industrial design, predominantly in restaurants — but the elements of industrial design feel right at home in residential spaces, as well. Organic materials are at the heart of industrial design, which highlights raw ingredients, such as exposed brick, steel, and wood.

What is your design style?
Showcasing every element of industrial design imaginable, this space is at once sleek and rustic.
Image: Andrea Behrends


Eclectic design style, by its nature, is difficult to define. One-of-a-kind elements come together to create one-of-a-kind designs that express the stylistic preferences of the homeowner. Sometimes chaotic and always unique, you’ll recognize an eclectic design when you see it.

Understanding eclectic design
A combination of styles come together with artful elements in this eclectic space with modern tendencies.
Image: Reid Rolls
Pops of green bring this corner to life
A favorite corner in the Beth Haley showroom, this space undoubtedly showcases eclectic design that celebrates our favorite color: green.
Image: Leila Grossman

Ultimately, the most important thing is to find the style that works for you. What is your design style?


Discover more of our blog posts here. We cover everything from color to coffee table books to functional design.

By |May 29th, 2019|BHD Projects, Decorating, Design Elements, Design Musings, Design Trends, Inspiration, Room Designs, Trend Spotting|Comments Off on Defining Interior Design Styles|

Swoon Over This Casual & Inviting Home

A notable fan of all things color and certainly all things bright and bold, Beth Haley is a Nashville designer who brings spaces to life. Her perspective and unique touch make rooms and homes both joyful and livable. Recently, Beth worked on a project a bit outside of her typical color-splashed aesthetic, and in doing so, she again illustrated just how multifaceted she is.

These Nashville clients approached Beth in hopes that she could take the formal furniture and decor in their condominium and seamlessly incorporate it in their new airy and open Green Hills home. They entrusted Beth with this challenge of making the space more comfortable and approachable, yet still elegant and elevated. Beth worked these very traditional pieces into a home that now exudes character, comfort and warmth.

A livable home with approachable design by Beth Haley Design
Beth shares, “Our client’s family baby grand piano is definitely a statement piece. The clients had the piano refurbished, and the finished product is gorgeous!”

Written by Annie Reeves, this article originally appeared on StyleBlueprint. Click here to read the full the article.


Discover more of our blog posts here. We cover everything from color to coffee table books to functional design.

By |April 25th, 2019|BHD Projects, Decorating, Design Elements, Design Trends, Furniture, Inspiration, Kitchens, Nashville, Room Designs|Comments Off on Swoon Over This Casual & Inviting Home|

November Newsletter- Spirit

November Newsletter – Spirit

Enthusiasm is contagious and we find ourselves inspired more than ever by the spirit of the holidays. Perhaps it was the rapid change of seasons we experienced this year, or maybe it was setting the clocks back a few weeks ago, but whatever the case, we’ve caught a serious spirit bug. Join us this month as we highlight styling tips to help create a festive, holiday home for you and yours. From all of us at Beth Haley Design, Happy Thanksgiving!

Featured Topic: Styling 101

Styling a showroom isn’t as easy as one might think. Neither is preparing for company. So how do we do it? Sure, we have a ton of options to
choose from and yes, we are always getting new things in, but the piece
of the puzzle nobody accounts for is how little planning you can really do in terms of when something will sell. Interior design, as many of you
know, takes planning. Careful planning. We labor over decisions for our
clients day in and day out creating contingency plans to the highest level of detail. If this drapery fabric and this sofa fabric, then this, this, and
this will work for pillow fabrics. It goes on and on. 

The showroom is more of a grab bag scenario. This chair, that end table, and this, this, and this pillow. When it comes down to it, having a showroom is a really big design challenge; how to make mix-matched pieces come alive. In the photo above you see many unique design pieces that could easily stand on their own come together and sing

One of the biggest secrets to creating an interesting composition is to find the right balance between shapes / masses (this is design speak for balancing furniture pieces). In the image above, we actually used a very traditional layout (sofa flanked by end tables paired with a mirrored set of chairs) but the result is a anything but ordinary. Look, an orange wall, not one but two abstract pieces of art, leather, velvet, silk, oh my! Yet, even with all the elements, the space feels grounded. Secure. The key is balancing the biggest pieces and creating unique, memorable moments with the accessories. 

Another secret is color coordination. Find a good color and stick to it! Here, we see perennial favorite BHD green come alive yet none of these pieces were purchased with the intent of creating this little vignette. We simply collect what we love, use what we have, and style, style, style. 

In this zoomed in image, we see the eclectic mix makes for an interesting arrangement but the color story ties the whole look together. 

Another unique aspect of having a showroom is the sheer abundance of stuff you have on hand that needs to be displayed. Here, we are basically running an operation that is the exact opposite of minimalism modern (even if that look is one of our jams). Beyond using design techniques like creating balance and telling color stories, we often find ourselves thinking in terms of texture, tone, and materials. What works together? What haven’t we seen before? What pairings surprisingly work together? Often, we get an idea in the showroom and use it as a spring board for design ideas down the road. 

Here, we highlight the purple in the painting in the choice of purple flowers. Design accident I think not! A sure fire way to create a nice, coordinated display is add fresh flowers in a color taken from the surrounding of your home. This means shopping intentionally for flowers and sometimes choosing the less obvious. 

The last piece of styling advice we want to parlay from our experience with the showroom is to not be afraid of color. Sometimes what you would never think would work on paper goes together in a flash. You might just create design magic with items you already had in your home. 

But as always, if you find yourself missing a few pieces or want to freshen things up with something new, you know where to find us! 

Featured Vendors: Artesia

We always leave High Point Market with a wish list longer than Santa’s but this past market, we really wanted to bundle everything from Artesia and take it back with us. They really captured a trend of now- lux raw materials- and gave it new life. Their displays were amazing and each element sung. 

Click here and scroll down to the bottom of the page for a cool 360 degree view of their showroom. It looks like the one from Spring 2018 not Fall 2018 but will still give you a good idea of the collection and the vibe they are trying to create though their brand. 

Featured Event: Antique picking party at GasLamp Antiques and GasLamp Too

Though GasLamp is always high on our list come holiday season for a one stop shop for finding thoughtful, unique gifts for everyone on our list, this year they are having a holiday shopping event we don’t want to miss! Shop both locations for special deals, holiday treats, and giveaway prizes. Honestly, don’t miss this easy-breezy chance to pickup lots of one of a kind objects from curated collections of the areas top dealers!

When: November 17
Time:10 a.m. to 6 p.m
Location: Both locations! GasLamp Antiques & GasLamp Too/100 and 128 Powell Pl

For more info click here! gaslampantiques.com/