5 Popular Interior Design Styles Explained

Shabby Chic

Shabby chic came to prominence in the 1980s and 1990s in response to the ultra-modernist “everything must be new” mentality of the time. Shabby chic is all about achieving that “lived in” look, with distressed, weathered white-painted furnishings, unique antique accessories and pillows and slipcovers in white linen or other muted tones.


Modern design is grounded in minimalism, where the building materials are the decoration — accessories and decorative objects are completely absent. A neutral colour palette, use of strong geometrical shapes and furnishings with clean lines feature heavily in modern interior design like the above bathroom by Leanne Ford in Rock the Block.

French Country

Casual yet elegant, French country mixes elements that include aged metals, distressed wood and a mix of patterns in stripes, florals and toile. The colour palette is inspired by the agricultural landscapes of Provence, with lavender, sage green and creamy white.


We continue our world tour with a stop in the southwestern States to hone in on the characteristics of this distinctive design style. Pulling together influences from Spain and the Indigenous peoples of the area, Southwestern design showcases brightly woven fabrics, leather furnishings, exposed ceiling beams, sun-washed colours and handicraft displays.


Rather than a hodgepodge of every single design style, eclectic design cleverly pulls inspiration from several different genres to create a space that elicits a sense of delight and surprise. Colour, pattern, composition and texture are all considered to make a room look cohesive while still feeling a bit wild.