Modern furniture is very popular, but many people are not sure what it is. They picture uncomfortable or unusable metal pieces. This is simply not true.
What is Modern Furniture?
Modern furniture is the name of any furniture that was designed after the 19th century. Before that, all furniture was created of dark woods and the pieces were big and heavy. When furniture designers began to use light-colored woods, bright fabrics, plastic and metals, it became known as modern furniture.
You may have modern furniture in your house right now and not even realize it because you have thought only of metals and glass furniture as modern. Look around and notice small tables (end tables) and materials with bright patterns. Those are each pieces of modern furniture. Any piece that is lighter colored and not only dark wood is considered a modern piece.
Modern Furniture vs. Traditional Furniture
When modern furniture was first introduced, many people would not buy it for fear it would not last as long as the traditional, heavy wooden pieces. When something is built the same way for years, it is hard to change the opinions of people that newer might be just as good, or even better, than the way furniture was built before. The first modern furniture was simply lighter-colored woods and lighter in weight.
Soon, new materials were used as the fabric coverings and with the added colors, the furniture looked even more modern. Traditionalists still shunned the design, but many people began choosing this bright furniture. Because traditional furniture is usually large, ornate pieces, it fit into the large homes that were popular when several generations lived together.
In today’s world, people live in smaller houses and have less room for big, imposing pieces of furniture. We also look for furniture that can be used for several things, such as seating and storage, instead of a traditional chair. Modern furniture is functional and practical, but still beautiful. New materials, such as metal, vinyl and leather, are often used in this popular type of furniture. There is little ornamentation on modern furniture as it is often constructed with simple lines and features. Materials that are used are often solid colored or ones with subtle patterns.
Can Modern Furniture be Mixed with Traditional Pieces?
Whether modern furniture, with its clean, simple lines, can be mixed with the ornate, darkness of traditional pieces is a matter of opinion. Some designers believe a house can only be one or the other and that mixing the two is never a good idea. Others think that mixing the charming older style with a simple new style creates a room that is exciting and fresh. Only you can decide whether you want to mix the styles or not. If you have a designer working on your room, be sure they understand what your choice is and whether you want old styles mixed with new.
The best designers know that decorating your home should be a personal choice and one to bring out your own personality. If you decide to mix the two styles, you should remember:
- Choose which style will be the dominate style and use pieces of the other one as accents in your home.
- Blend the two styles together by using the same texture or colors in the pieces you choose.
- Before buying anything, decide if you want to go for harmony, so your room looks relaxing, or if you want contrast so your room looks exciting.
- Always plan ahead so you do not need to make several trips to the store to return items that do not give your room the look you desire.
There are many reasons that modern furniture is more popular:
- It is smaller.
- It is lightweight.
- It is simple in design.
- It is easier to clean.
- Modern furniture is more functional.
Many pieces of the modern furniture style serve one than one purpose. With busy lives and tight budgets, many people choose pieces that they can use for several things. Houses are often not as full of furniture and decorations as they used to be. Busy families simply do not have time to dust lots of things or decoration in furniture designs.
Modern furniture pieces that can serve dual purposes include:
- Chests that are used as coffee tables for the extra storage.
- End tables that include drawers for storage.
- Wooden chests that can serve as extra seating.
- Tables that include a “docking” or “charging” station for cell phones or iPods.
- Couches that have storage in the arms for remote controls or magazines.
- Chairs or couches that have tables hidden in compartments of the arms.
Customized Modern Furniture in Toronto
For a completely unique look for your home, think about having custom modern furniture designed just for you. If you know what you want, you can hire a craftsman to build your furniture, but for creative advice, hiring a designer is a great idea.
A designer will meet with you to hear exactly what your ideas are, what you need, and what you have budgeted for your purchase. A visit to your home could also be a good idea so they can get a feel for what you already have and the type of modern furniture that would blend into your design. The type of furniture that can be designed for you is limitless. Modern furniture can be added to any room in the house.
- Living room – tables, couches, chairs, craft tables, entertainment centers
- Bedroom – dressers, night stands, beds, changing tables
- Kitchen – tables and chairs, free-standing pantries
- Dining room – hutches, tables, chairs
- Offices – computer stations, desks, chairs
The only things that limit what type of modern furniture you can choose are your imagination and your budget.