Transitional design blends traditional style with contemporary influences to feel cohesive and balanced. Transitional decor style is timeless and relaxed and results in a warm yet current space. Transitional style is hallmarked by sleek, streamlined lines, with the warmth of a traditional room. Transitional spaces typically have a neutral color palette with plenty of texture.
A transitional home is one that avoids feeling too stark or too stuffy. It’s also practical for families, as it favors comfortable furniture and a neutral aesthetic. Read on to learn more about incorporating transitional design throughout your home.
What is Transitional Design?
Blending traditional and contemporary furniture, fabrics and finishes embodies transitional style. The result is a timeless look with a modern feel.
- Transitional style means blending traditional furniture elements with contemporary aspects. One example of a transitional design element is a sofa with sleek, track arms upholstered in a luxe boucle or tweed fabric.
- Balancing shapes, such as pairing an angular sofa with a round side table, is prevalent in a transitional home.
- Transitional decor features neutral colors, such as gray, white, cream and taupe. This neutral palette can also be accented by bolder colors, such as navy blue, charcoal, or black.
- Transitional design often features a tonal color palette, with plenty of texture. Such as a gray-on-gray color palette, with a pale gray cashmere throw, draped across a charcoal chenille sectional.
- Transitional accents have a variety of textures and in high-performance fabrics.
- A transitional room may have contemporary lighting, such as a modern chandelier, to balance the larger traditional furniture pieces.
- Mixing metals, such as polished nickel and aged brass, creates a stylish look in a transitional space.
How to Create a Transitional Space
Balance and comfort are two of the most important aspects of a transitional space. A sofa with generous cushions, plush upholstery and textured pillows and throws invite you to sink in and be comfortable. Balancing the softness with more formal accent chairs results in a laid-back yet refined space. Additionally, bringing in an abundance of textures can help a neutral transitional room from feeling too sterile.
Below are several additional guidelines for creating a transitional decor scheme:
- Maintain a neutral color palette
- Vary the textures, such as wood, rattan, glass, fabric and metals
- Show restraint with your accessories
- Take a less is more approach with art — opt for one large piece of art instead of many little ones
Where to Shop for Transitional Decor Pieces
A transitional home is a marriage of both old and new pieces. Below are tried-and-true retailers that have an affinity for traditional home decor.
- Serena & Lily: breezy California style with our passion for great design. Our look is casual and coastal, relaxed yet refined. Our designs blend classic influences with modern lines; eclectic inspiration with great American style.
- Arhaus offers unique products that artisans around the world often handcraft — and range in style from rustic to chic.
- Horchow prides itself on curating pieces that are new takes on old favorites and helping to create a nurturing space.
If you’re looking to create a transitional space, follow this guide to create a home that blends traditional and contemporary styles and is filled with sleek, streamlined lines combined with classic warmth.