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interior upstairs of home cable railing

Traditional + Contemporary = Transitional Design

One of the more interesting outcomes of home design websites like HouzzCoco Lapine DesignMartha StewartNora Schneider, to name a few, is an inevitable mash-up of design styles.

Consider transitional home design, for example. This hybrid design approach blends the best elements of traditional and contemporary looks into a wholly distinct aesthetic that simultaneously charms and soothes with an easy-going elegance.

Commentators use terms like “the Goldilocks effect,” “the best of both worlds,” “checks all the boxes,” “perfect middle ground,” and “the art of mixing” to describe the rising popularity of this eclectic design system.

Does a transitional style imply the only rule is there are no rules? Not at all. Transitional home stylists will insist there is an applied rigor like any other style, such as Victorian, bohemian, contemporary, traditional, art deco, or industrial. Here are a few characteristics of transitional design:

  • Soothing Colors. Use subdued shades of color. Consider soft grays and warm tans. Don’t be shy by mixing and matching.
  • Comfortable Furniture. Consider pieces that favor the clean lines of contemporary design. Make sure they’re plush and comfortable. Relaxed and welcoming is a central transitional style concept.
  • Textural Variety. Feature wood, glass, lacquer, rattan, fabric, steel, and metal in your design scheme.
  • Limited Accessories. Furnishings and fabrics are the stars of transitional style, not an over-abundance of accessories which can distract.
  • Prominent Art. One large wall item is preferred over an array of smaller pieces.

As you might expect, an emphasis on simplicity, restraint, and mixed-media is a fine environment for interior applications of CableRail. The inherently sleek, nearly invisible composition of a CableRail system opens the home to light and the kind of clean, crisp look transitional style represents.

Readers of this blog may recall we featured three examples of CableRail applications in transitional home settings. The one pictured below was featured on the FOX TV show Home Free. Our CableRail system proved to be a fine complement to the home’s natural soft-tone color palette.

As you weigh design ideas for your next project, keep transitional design in mind. It’s simplicity, comfort, and growing popularity make it a fan favorite for remodeling and new construction. 

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