Traditional Interiors: Does this sumptuous style work for you?

Hudson River Dining Room Cupboard

Traditional style dining room in Upstate New York features classic wood china cabinet and furniture


Is a traditional interior style right for you?  Traditional style celebrates simple elegance, classic shapes, and unfussy details (see these examples of traditional style designs).  It provides soothing comfort for relaxing at home and allows guests to take a greater share of attention.  Below are 6 questions and answers to help you see if this style will give you the setting you want for your home or business:

1.  What is a Traditional Interior?

A traditional interior is usually a cozy, comfortable and calming room.  Hallmarks of a traditional room include carved moldings, fine woodwork, graceful lines, and sturdy, finely crafted furniture.  An overstuffed, sumptuous sofa, soft accent pillows, framed wall decorations and elegant fabric curtains are a few details often found in a traditional room.

2. Which Furniture Styles are Traditional?

The most popular furniture styles for traditional rooms are Sheraton, Chippendale, and Queen Anne.  Queen Anne pieces are graceful and elaborately decorated with cabriole legs, violin shaped chair backs, curved lines, and decorative finials.  Chippendale is similar to the Queen Anne style but with gently straightened out lines and greater artistic embellishment.  Sheraton pieces are delicate with straight, somewhat tapered legs with contrasting veneers and inlays.

3. What kind of Accessories Follow Traditional Style?

To complete the luxurious and elegant quality of the room, accessories often include vases, bowls, and candle stands carved with designs favored by 18th and 19th century artisans.

4. What Colors are Used in Traditional Interiors?

Walls are usually painted beige, ivory or cream.  However, a color palette consisting of bold colors can be used for dramatic effects.  For instance, an accent wall in a bold color may serve as  a backdrop for furniture pieces.  Splashes of bold colors are also found in artwork and accessories.

5. What is the Difference between Traditional, Modern and Transitional Décor?

Traditional rooms use ornament and accessories for warmth, a ‘homey’ feel, comfort and relaxation.  Modern rooms take the opposite approach, ushering calm through the use of open space, clean lines, basic shapes, and no adornment.  Transitional décor embraces the comfort of traditional design and the stylish looks of modern design.

6. Who is happiest choosing this style?

A traditional style offers the familiar comfort of using forms, colors, and materials as they have been used in past.  People who pursue a deep connection with Old World, European or early American history take great pleasure in this style.  If you crave elegance and order, this style will feel timeless and satisfying.

Traditional style spaces designed with modern-day tastes appear in the Obamas’ living quarters.  This style has also been enjoyed in the homes of celebrities like Stephen Spielberg, Dustin Hoffman, and Michelle Pfeiffer.

Traditional style influences many modern interiors.  You don’t need antiques or dark wood walls to enjoy this style.  You can find inspiration in our photo gallery at  Type “traditional” in the photo search box to see featured traditional interiors.

Feeling inspired? Find out more about our design talent team.  Or for immediate assistance,  contact us for a referral to a design professional that can bring traditional elegance to life in your space


Instant updates by email.