Identifying Your Home Architectural Style

Every house comes with a particular style. Two or more styles are sometimes present due to renovations and new, eclectic mixes. Classifying a home into one specific category can be daunting or even impossible. A lot of us can easily sound off the number of baths, name the designer of our bedding, and recall the type of countertop in our kitchen. But how many of us can lay claim to knowing, which architectural style our living spaces, fall under?

You may perhaps categorise your house style under modern architecture. Modern architecture has something for everyone. Your taste and preferences could very well be skewed towards the other end of the design spectrum such as rustic country yet there always remain elements of modern design that will appeal to you. Are you sceptical? Read on to change your mind.

Guide to modern home architecture styles

The fundamentals of modern architecture are clean and straightforward. Its ever-present philosophy abides by the idea of form follows function. Therefore, modern architects express themselves through simplicity, unobstructed views of structural elements and by shunning unnecessary design details. This architectural style boasts the actual structure and materials used in the building as opposed to adorning them with ornate designs. That is why most modern designs are imbued with elements of wood, steel and glass, in order to exhibit these industrial structural materials.

Modern architecture encompasses many different styles and designs, with no one set of defining standards. Visually and aesthetically pleasing, modern structure emphasises on horizontal and vertical lines and 90-degree angles. The terms and contemporary have been used interchangeably in the design world, resulting in much confusion. This confusion has time and again led us to the question of whether contemporary architecture and design the same as modern architecture and design. The answer to this is yes and no.

To be very literal, contemporary refers to now, while modern is related to the technological and engineering advancements that date back to the turn of the 20th century. In layman’s terms, modern architecture lends itself to the liberal use of innovative industrial developments such as steel, concrete and glass. While the contemporary design may borrow these very elements, its designs are known to be pristine and well ahead of its time compared to modern architecture. With all being said and done, it is not uncommon for the two designs to intertwine with one another.

Remember that modern architecture is defined by its clean lines and minimalist interiors that allow the structure to speak for themselves and take centre-stage.

Why people love modern architecture

Despite its minimalist styling that eschews unnecessary fluff, modern architecture remains unique. In fact, modern architects have created some of the most unusual designs to date. Just look at the designs of Frank Lloyd Wright and numerous other iconic architects.

True, some of these modern designs may boast of flat roofs and a boxy style, yet they somehow manage to be anything but boring. Look around your city streets and neighbourhoods. Which architectural designs stand out to you the most? The individual one-of-a-kind modern ones, or the run-the-mill designs that tend to imitate one another row after row? Modern architecture is anything but conventional.

Look to the invention of bold, angular rooflines that are commonplace in modern design. These are extremely unique. From the vaulted ceilings to the exposed structural components and the unusual linear details, they all equate to a single, artistic design that you cannot help but be marvelled by.

Less is more

Less is more when it comes to furnishing a modern home. After all, why would you want to conceal all the amazing architectural details of the design by embellishing it with layers of undesirable ornamentation? Modern designs are meant to speak for themselves. They make their statement through their structure and functionality.

Take the interior décor of a pure, clean and natural home for instance. The furnishings feature elements of steel and wood and are incorporated to help highlight the real hero – the architecture. Everything is kept plain so that the blueprint of the home and the materials used in its design will revel in the attention. This is not to say that a modern home should not have pops of colour or added character through decor. It is just that there needs to be a delicate balance that adds to the architecture rather than takes away from it.

A misconception that critics often have of modern architecture is that it is crisp and cold. However, the opposite could be argued.  A considerable number of modern designs make use of naturally warm and inviting elements such as wood and stone. Floor-to-ceiling stone fireplaces, large windows where natural light shines in, vaulted post and beam ceilings. What could lend more character and warmth than these remarkably modern features?  While the pattern may be linear, clean and uncluttered, there is a sense of comfort that comes with modern architecture. Also, most modern plans contain fewer walls, thereby creating a more welcoming, open living space that most people crave.

Are you beginning to warm up to the idea of modern architecture yet? If you still desire a bit of traditional style, then keep reading.

Where traditional and modern architecture meet

They can exist in harmony. Incorporating traditional and modern architectural elements works well when done correctly and with a hint of restraint. There are copious examples of successful meshing of the two, seemingly opposing styles together into one cohesive design. An exemplary illustration of a modern and traditional union can is demonstrated in the mixture of cedar shingles with modern structural elements. This creates a pristine environment and enticing home.

Of course, this is not a design union for the faint-hearted. One would have to be bold to carry this out. It is recommended that you attempt this beneath the supervised watch of a skilled design architect. So what is there not to love about modern architecture? We have proven that modern designs are unique, warm, inviting and open creations of structural beauty. Better yet, you can add traditional elements into a modern design and get the best of both design worlds.

Design your own modern architecture home

The word ‘modern’ has ties to the present, so when we talk about modern houses, we are primarily referring to those that are built according to the current trends. The modern movement in architecture began in the early decades of the twentieth century. It was formulated in response to the overused antiquated styles marked by elaborate ornamentation. Designers of the time looked for ways to make architecture simpler. This resulted in innovative forms of construction using new materials, such as concrete, metal and glass. There is a broad spectrum of modern house designs at the moment. However, they are all built on the general principles of simplicity, functionality, elegance and a lack of ornamentation. The allure of a modern house lies in its simple design.

What should you consider when planning a modern home?

In a modern style house, there should be dissonance amongst all the design elements. Simplicity is key. Try to reign in complicated designs by doing away with too many separation features such as long corridors or passages. The approach is to use the spaces effectively so that each of them can be put to the maximum use.

Modern architects tend to view their house designs as machines that perform, and this is an invaluable theory to apply in building your house. When in doubt, question yourself. Is the shape of my house practical? Does it have adequate natural lighting and provide privacy in the places that need it? Do not forget about colours. Modern houses have larger concentrations of neutral colours such as cool whites, beige, light grey and cream, but it is all right to have few splashes of bright or flashy colours, so long as they do not overwhelm the design.

What to consider when building a modern style house?

The number one thing to do is to get an idea of how many people will be living under one roof. Is it going to be built for your family? If so, do you need massive spaces like terraces, gardens or a front yard that can be used for socialising or for your children to run around? Alternatively, would you prefer a small modern apartment or a cosy prefabricated house perfect for two people? These questions become even more relevant depending on where you plan to build your home.

The façade is another element to consider. Modern houses use concrete, exposed bricks and glass to create a light and minimalist effect. In a state such as California where extreme climate persists, or a home atop a hilly region, the use of glass would significantly decrease the insulation of the house, incurring additional expenses for heating or cooling the interiors.

You want to utilise every inch of the space to its full extent when designing the interior of your home. Modern designs are characterised by the strategic use of space through using ample storage as well as rooms with dual functionality. The design should be tailored to your requirements. For instance, you can include a balcony for better use of space and light. If you appreciate art, the interiors can have areas that are adequately illuminated and structured to display paintings or sculptures. Work together with an architect and explain your requirements to create a beautiful and functional house that is a genuine manifestation of the modern design style.