The Remodel Design Conundrum: Contemporary versus Historical

Posted by Devon Shryock

Many homeowners love elements of both historical and contemporary homes. This can make them feel torn during the design process. In many cases, we can provide a pleasing merge of both the contemporary and classic design aspects of a home. However, here’s a quick key to help you decide which one you lean more toward. Are you a contemporary homeowner, or do you focus on older styles? Find out:


Wide open spaces. These home designs tend to flow from one room to another without much in separation. The kitchen may be separated from the living room and dining room by a breakfast bar. The foyer can open onto a large den and dining room. Rooms are made to be seen and interacted with.

Natural materials. Contemporary homes tend to go with clean lines and natural or organic accents. This may mean a hardwood floor with marble countertops or granite counters in the kitchen. 

Light plays a huge part in the home. The interior of the home incorporates light and gives a bright, airy look. This is accomplished with big windows, glass doors, solar tubes, and translucent glass.

Minimalistic look. Both the interior and exterior of a contemporary home tends to be free of heavy ornamentation. The clean lines of the home is what makes it stand out.


Multiple rooms, each with its own use. You have breakfast in the breakfast room. Dinner and lunch are taken in the dining room. Reading is done in the library. Bathing is done in the bathroom, which is separate from the room which houses your toilet. Each room is in its place for a very specific purpose.


There are a number of flourishes. A scrolled crown here, a pillar there, older homes tend to have decorative details which are missing from their contemporary counterparts.

Accents adorn the exterior. Dormers, gables, and giant chimneys may be a major part of the architecture of this home. They may even require specific types of roofing, like thatch or wood shakes.

Whether you enjoy a contemporary look or love the history of an older home, we can create a beautiful merge of your favorite aspects of both. The most common remodel conundrum is the desire for modern utility and the elegance of older homes. If you take a look at our gallery, you will have a chance to see the many ways we have merged both of these factors into a seamless design.

We would love to know what you think and be sure to forward this article to your friends. Are they contemporary home lovers or do they enjoy the elegance of a historical look? 

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