What Defines Modern Furniture

There has been a lot of confusion about what modern furniture is. If you want to design your home in a modern style, it is important to understand modern furniture. That way, you will not use contemporary or classic furniture. Mid-century modern furniture started becoming popular in the mid-20th century. It was influenced by modernism, with artists, designers, and craftsmen designing furniture with functionality and artistry in mind. Instead of being current, modern furniture features specific aesthetics. The idea is to introduce a simpler, cleaner design using available modern materials through technological processes.

Artists’ Intention

The artists were driven by the desire to use these new materials available. They therefore focused on shape, producing functional furniture with an artistic appeal. For instance, they made chairs from molded fiberglass or outfitted lounge chairs with stainless steel legs. These designs caught the attention of consumers. After WWII, most homeowners with a disposable income demanded new fresh designs to furnish their homes.

Defining Modern Furniture Design

So, what is considered modern furniture? Modern furniture designs feature sleek, straight lines with smooth and shiny surfaces. Instead of ornate designs found in traditional styles, modern furniture boasts geometric forms. The goal is to produce clean pieces devoid of messy lines, intricacies, or color schemes. Unlike traditional furniture with a heavy visual appeal, modern furniture has a lighter visual appeal. In addition, there is the use of modern materials such as chrome, aluminum, light wood, nickel, stainless steel, and plastic with clean and simple lines devoid of intricate details.


The famous designers of modern furniture designs include Arne Jacobsen, Florence Knoll Basset, Herman Miller, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, and Charles and Ray Eames (husband and wife). Thanks to the group, iconic furniture pieces were created, like the Tongue chair, Barcelona chair, and other exemplary items.

Another popular modern designer is Milo Baughman, who renewed the classic styles’ look. Together with furniture builders like Henredon and Drexel, they brought interesting furniture styles to the masses. Knoll, a company by Basset, still exists and continues to create modern furniture designs.

Modern Vs. Contemporary Design Furniture

These two are often confused when buying furniture. Although they both have a few similarities, they are two different styles.

Modern Furniture Design

To ensure you do not mistake contemporary furniture with modern furniture, you need to ask yourself, how does modern furniture design work? Modern designs are of a specific time, taking on the Scandinavian and German Bauhaus Designs. It features:

  • Clean, crisp lines
  • Noticeable aesthetics
  • Balance
  • Angular
  • Warm neutrals

Contemporary Furniture Design

On the other end, contemporary designs are constantly changing. They display current designs. Some features to expect include:

  • Less artistic
  • Overstuffed with a softer feel
  • A restructured traditional look featuring modest midcentury modern influence
  • Clean and softer lines but more functional with some intricate detailing
  • Minimalism or any other universal styles that do not overemphasize one specific component

Now that you understand this furniture style, you may be asking yourself, is modern furniture better? The choice of furniture is something personal. Plus, you have to buy what complements the style of your home. However, if your home is in a modern style, then you need to get modern furniture. You can check out sleek modern furniture at Orangeburg Furniture Exchange and incorporate this interesting style into your home.