What is Transitional Modern Design and What Makes it So Great?

This guest post is written with Living With Lolo (an Interior Design Firm in Scottsdale, AZ) and together, we are exploring Transitional Modern Design. This category mixes elements that ‘transition’ outside the traditional design space, leaning towards a more modern sensibility.

Transitional modern homes can be so captivating because they aren’t based solely on one style or era, but rather mix various styles into a unified look - a blend of furnishings, textures, and accessories from both traditional and modern styles can achieve a cohesive look that is both elegant and visually interesting.

Adding a variety of textures, beautiful oversized art pieces, and accessories in a thoughtful way are some of our favorite ways to get the transitional modern feel.

A nice example is this living room by Butter Lutz Interiors based in Austin, TX, where a cozy sofa and chairs with a more traditional design are paired with a modern rectangular coffee table and a modern cream and white color scheme. A twist of a rustic vibe blends all of the elements together beautifully.

Transitional Modern Living Room by  Butter Lutz Interiors .

Transitional Modern Living Room by Butter Lutz Interiors.


In the bedroom, choose a luxurious, fabric headboard for a traditional element, balanced out with modern bedside lamps such as the one below by Beckwith Interiors based in Nashville, TN.

A transitional modern bedroom with soft grey, tufted /studded headboard with ultra-modern bedside lamps in black. Bedroom by  Beckwith Interiors .

A transitional modern bedroom with soft grey, tufted /studded headboard with ultra-modern bedside lamps in black. Bedroom by Beckwith Interiors.

Our very own ‘Fresh Fantastic and Fun on 1st Street’ master bedroom is also a great example, combining a charcoal grey traditionally upholstered headboard with a modern, geometric metal and glass bedside lamp! The floral pillows are a perfect mix of both styles.

A traditional modern bedroom in grey hues with floral pops, part of our ‘ Fresh, Fantastic and Fun on 1st Street ’ project.

A traditional modern bedroom in grey hues with floral pops, part of our ‘Fresh, Fantastic and Fun on 1st Street’ project.


A bathroom is also a perfect area for a functional, transitional look.  Check out our ‘Carroll Street Cool’ bathroom where a rustic, farmhouse sink combines with modern concrete, hexagon tiles.  Sharp and neutral black, white and grey tones solidify the modern touch.

A black and white, double farmhouse sink by  Kohler  play off of  Adko  Hexagon tiles for a perfect transitional, modern look in our  Carroll Street Cool  project.

A black and white, double farmhouse sink by Kohler play off of Adko Hexagon tiles for a perfect transitional, modern look in our Carroll Street Cool project.


Working with trade-only vendors to select unique décor pieces will make a space truly stunning. Interior designers have access to specialized vendors that can create art in custom sizes and colors to fit your space perfectly – and offer advice on which pieces to purchase - and for something more custom, investing in a piece from a local artist is highly recommended.  One of our favorite artist is Neil Powell, as his pieces are colorful, impactful, modern shapes - made from old books.  A perfect combination of old and new!  Purchasing an artists piece will pay off both in daily enjoyment but also as a future investment.


‘Standard Funk’ by  Neil Powell .

‘Standard Funk’ by Neil Powell.

However, there are also more budget-friendly options from major retailers that can be a lovely way to add a finishing touch. West Elm and Pottery Barn, for example, both have offerings in the art department that can be elegantly added to a transitional modern room.

Minted for West Elm . ‘Find the Image’ 22” x 28”

Minted for West Elm. ‘Find the Image’ 22” x 28”


And … a perfectly styled space includes the right accessories, so be sure to budget accordingly to make a home feel refreshing and timeless! While it may seem like a small detail, a professional interior designer can help choose those ever-important finishing touches which will make your home go from good to outstanding!

E-design is also a great way to accessorize your space in a DIY way but with the guidance of a professional designer.

Our eclectic yet timeless living room from our ‘ Park Slope Glam ’ project.

Our eclectic yet timeless living room from our ‘Park Slope Glam’ project.