contemporary furniture

Which is Better to Buy – Contemporary Furniture or Traditional Furniture?

There are so many different furniture styles, interior design aesthetics, and home decorating types — mid-century modern, cottagecore, coastal, and more —  but at their essence, you can categorise most in to one of two types: traditional or contemporary. 

While some contemporary furniture can also be traditional, and vice versa, depending on how you style it, there are some hallmarks of each style that set them apart. And when you’re considering the design and decor you want for your home, you may want to incorporate both traditional and contemporary pieces, or you may want to opt for one or the other. 

Either way, it’s good to understand what makes contemporary furniture versus traditional furniture, and how to know which one is right for your home and your personal style preferences. Read on to learn more! 

Traditional furniture: ornate elegance or rustic charm

There are two types of traditional furniture styles, and at first they may seem to be in contrast with each other. You can have the ornate detailing of sophisticated traditional furniture made of mahogany or other opulent material, or you can have the rustic, farmhouse-inspired charm of furniture that evokes a homespun look.

However, despite their visual differences, traditional furniture styles share common bonds in a number of ways. For one, traditional furniture is often larger than its contemporary counterparts. In traditional homes, there is less focus on smaller, secondary furniture pieces, and the main furniture items like beds and dining tables therefore take up more space in a room.

Another obvious similarity is the fact that traditional furniture draws inspiration from earlier time periods. Whether you’re choosing a Queen Anne or Victorian aesthetic, a Chippendale or Sheraton look, or a classic Jacobean design, your traditional furniture will evoke the styling of times gone by. 

Contemporary furniture: modern shapes and clean lines

When it comes to contemporary furniture, less is more. Contemporary styles are all about simple, clean lines, and organic or geometric shapes that offer ‘flow’ for your space. But that doesn’t mean contemporary furniture is boring! There are plenty of bold designs available for eye-catching, statement-making modern looks. 

Contemporary furniture style was created in response to the super-decorative look of traditional furniture, and draws inspiration from aerodynamic innovations and industrial designs. Contemporary furniture is often lighter in colour and features sleek materials like glass and metal. 

Confusingly, contemporary style can also be inspired by the past. However, rather than taking cues from the 1700s or 1800s and their elaborate furniture trends, contemporary furniture has more in common with mid-century modern furniture or Art Deco style from the early to mid 20th century. 

Contemporary vs traditional: which is best for your home? 

For the most part, the choice between contemporary furniture and traditional furniture comes down to your own personal preferences. 

Maybe you love the stately look of dark and ornate traditional furniture, or maybe you want a light and bright setup with contemporary pieces. You may even go for an eclectic interior design aesthetic that combines both contemporary and traditional furniture types. 

One reason you may prefer contemporary furniture is if you enjoy a minimalist aesthetic with organic-inspired elements. Contemporary pieces often feature curved lines and circular shapes that give your room a chic yet natural look. 

Contemporary furniture is also great in a smaller home because it tends to be more compact in size and also uses a lighter colour palette that won’t be overwhelming in a smaller room. 

On the other hand, sometimes traditional furniture is an ideal pick for your interior design dreams. If you have antique furniture that you want to take pride of place in a room, then traditional furniture styles that evoke a similar time period will be fitting and complement your heirloom pieces. 

Likewise, traditional furniture may be ideal for a home that strives for a maximalist aesthetic. Because of their many details, traditional pieces are great to combine with printed wallpaper, patterned rugs, and vivid window treatments to create a stylishly busy space. 

Find the best furniture of every style at Corcoran’s

Contemporary furniture, traditional furniture… no matter your interior design style, you can find the perfect pieces to fit your home at Corcoran’s Furniture. The great thing about the collection of furniture and home decor available at Corcoran’s in our Kerry and Limerick stores or on our website,is that we have a range that spans all sorts of design aesthetics. 

So whether you’re looking for mid-century modern, Victorian, or futuristic, you will find furniture to suit, and all the accessories to go with it that will finish the look and deck out every room in your home. 

Shop online now or visit us in store. Any questions? Talk to our team — our furniture experts are always happy to help you make your house a home and bring your dream interior design style to any space.

Lauren Mateer

Lauren Mateer

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