The Top Interior Design Styles Based on Age

The scrunchies you adored in middle school probably cause you to shriek in horror today. As we grow, so does our fashion sense (hopefully). Does the same go for decor preferences? Interior design startup Modsy, which helps its users visualize potential new furniture in their real-life rooms, decided to find out. The platform analyzed user data based on its free style quiz, and quickly discovered that just as with the proper bedtime or the appropriate length of shorts, the young and old see interior design styles differently.

Millennials (those ages 18 to 34) are seemingly obsessed with modern, minimal midcentury design, called “mod visionary” in the Modsy quiz. Alessandra Wood, a design history PhD and the director of style at Modsy, isn’t surprised. “Younger generations living in cities are likely living in smaller apartments and condos, so a minimalist aesthetic is more appropriate—perhaps even necessary!—for the size of their spaces,” she explains. “Midcentury-style furniture tends to feel more open and less bulky, and is known for being ‘livable,’ which translates to both comfortable and stylish. Urban areas are also the prime location for the industrial aesthetic, with tons of converted lofts and newer buildings mimicking the loft-feel.”

Then there are the 55- to 65-year-old baby boomers, who most often received “refined rustic” as their result on the style quiz. “‘Refined rustic,’ in particular, blends classic forms with a more informal rustic style, suggesting that these generations are looking for a comfortable feel to their homes,” says Wood. Perhaps life has taught them that a sharp-lined, sculptural armchair—a sure bet for millennials—isn’t what you want to cozy up in, well, ever.

But we might not have to agree to disagree, after all. Those born in the mid-1990s to the mid-2000s (a.k.a. Generation Z) seem to be in cahoots with the boomers. “Rustic warmth” is the third most popular quiz result for them. “For Gen Z, we’re seeing a resurgence in popularity of classic styles, but layered with an informal twist,” says Wood. We just hope this isn’t a sign that scrunchies are back.

Modern Living Room by BoydDesign and BoydDesign in Malibu, California

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