Contemporary Vs. Modern Furniture – Breaking the Myth

  • August 30, 2017
  • By admin

We all have a hard time understanding difference between Contemporary furniture and Modern furniture. Do you? Well, that is okay if you do, as modern and contemporary are two different styles.

My English was sorted before entering the world of interior decor. Modern and Contemporary style were like synonyms, that is how Google explains it. We have all come across this dialogue, “English is a very funny language”, indeed it is. But, joining an interior decor field forced me to do a thorough research on the different furniture styles available. Post research, I was in a trance mode for few minutes. These synonymous words have completely different meanings when it comes to furniture and interior style.

One basic thing everyone should know about furniture style is each represents a period in time. Although, Modern and Contemporary are often used interchangeably, they are not the same. Remember, Modern and Contemporary furniture represent different periods in time. The word ‘Contemporary’ in furniture means exactly what Google and dictionary tells us. Any style trending in present time is termed as Contemporary style. For instance, 2017 is swinging with Scandinavian and Bauhaus style furniture. Hence, Scandinavian and Bauhaus designs are Contemporary for the year 2017.


Modern in the routine usage means westernization or maybe something that is in trend and on-going. Whereas, in the furniture world, the word Modern relates to the style designed during the Modern era i.e. the period between 1920s to 1950s, also remembered as the Industrial Revolution era. During my research I came across a vague term, Mid-century Modern furniture. By now I was irked and tossed. I went digging on to what Mid-century Modern Furniture is, but failed to differentiate it with Modern Furniture. I concluded this term as being ‘the styles designed during the mid of modern era’. Okay, that may sound vague, but my research landed me into a dazed situation. Later, on my interaction with an interior decor expert, I learned, Mid-century Modern and Modern meant, well, the same thing.


Modern and contemporary furniture have their own definitions of peach and beauty. Furniture crafted during the modern era inclined towards a harmony of form and function. Whereas, contemporary style furniture leans over elegant forms based on latest trends and pop-culture.

With all the physical differences, one thing common in these two styles is, both add a touch of sophistication and functionality to your home interiors in their own charming ways.