Classic and contemporary come together.
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Idea House 2020 Kitchen
Credit: Photo: ROBBIE CAPONETTO; STYLING: KENDRA SURFACE

When choosing a home design style, it can feel daunting to settle on just one. There's no wrong answer, but perhaps too many that feel right. While it can be difficult to delicately combine a love for white walls and a fleeting penchant for bright patterned wallpaper, you can easily combine design styles—and there's one such hybrid trend that has silently been taking over. In 2022, you'll be hearing a lot about transitional design, which we like to call the "people pleaser," in the best way.

It's the home design style made for those who want both: contemporary and classic. It incorporates elements of both—imagine a traditional wooden farmhouse table paired with modern metal chairs (seen below)—making it ideal if you're not sure if you want to commit to only one distinct style. In a way, you get to create your own!

Idea House 2020 Dining Room with White Walls, Wood Dining Table, and Metal Chairs
Credit: Robbie Caponetto; Styling: Kendra Surface

Transitional design relies heavily on neutrals and thoughtfully chosen accent pieces that can sway the vibe of the room. Lauren Liess, interior designer of our 2020 Idea House in Asheville, North Carolina, mixes different design accents to create a bespoke style that feels both timelessly classic and uniquely new.

2020 Idea House Living Room with Wood Beams and Fireplace
Credit: Robbie Caponetto; Styling: Kendra Surface

"I often use new upholstery but bring in quirky antiques—like the Victorian armchair (above)—to add charm," Lauren says. White linens and walls give a fresh pop to other natural textures and antique accent pieces.

Idea House 2020 Guest Bathroom
Credit: Robbie Caponetto; Styling: Kendra Surface

Choose small spaces to experiment with more contemporary nods, such as a streamlined bathroom counter and backsplash paired with antique-inspired fixtures with brushed-gold finishes (above). Play with mirror shape, too.

Idea House 2020 Kitchen with White Island and Dark lower Cabinets
Credit: Robbie Caponetto; Styling: Kendra Surface

Create a transitional kitchen by starting with a clean core design and working in classic accents, seen above with terra-cotta tiles and a chimney-style range hood (with an oak board) that add a historical touch to a new space. It gets balance from sleek cabinetry and contemporary counter stools.

If you haven't been sure which overarching design style feels like you—or you simply don't want to choose between two favorite styles—transitional home design might be the key to putting together your dream interiors.