The American Home’s Interior Design Through the Decades

Published November 11, 2020

Like fashion and technology, a home’s interior design is subject to changes brought about by trends, movements, and advancements. Some design elements came and went, others stayed, and there are those making a comeback as well. 

Get inspiration and gather ideas for your future home’s style. Read on to learn about home interior design in America through the decades.


The 1920s was largely dominated by the Art Deco style, characterized by geometric patterns and symmetrical shapes. Also present were industrial designs popularized by the German Bauhaus movement such as graphic curves and steel furniture.


Simplicity was the focus of the trends in this decade, given the economic downturn brought about by the Great Depression. The streamline moderne style, defined by muted patterns, clean lines, and neutral colors, flourished during this era.


World War II massively influenced 1940s interior design. Sentimental designs and cozy furniture gave a sense of post-war comfort and stability. Floral prints, coordinated colors, picture windows, ruffled edges, and wall-to-wall carpeting are features of this era’s trends. 


It was during this period when the so-called mid-century modern design came about. Pastel colors, wooden accents, open floor plans, and glass doors characterized this era’s style.


Flamboyance and boldness defined the trend during the ‘60s. Pop art, thanks to artists like Andy Warhol, largely influenced this era’s design. Some features were neon colors, bright accents, and patterned wallpapers.


The trend of bright colors continued during the ‘70s, with mustard yellow being particularly popular. Shag carpeting, bold wallpapers, hippie accessories, and wicker furniture were some of this period’s design elements.


Pastels, florals, and chintz were popular design elements during the ‘80s. Other features of this decade’s trend were vinyl flooring, glass blocks, wall-to-wall carpeting, and matching patterns.


The iconic shabby chic apartment from the popular TV show Friends pretty much sums up home design in the ‘90s. Wooden furniture, saturated colors, and long curtains characterized this period’s trend.


The new millennium saw the rise of stainless steel, overtaking wood as one of the most popular design materials. The all-white aesthetic also largely defined this decade.


Technology became largely incorporated into the interior design during this period. Some other features were rustic and industrial elements. In addition, during the last few years of the decade, modern minimalism grew in popularity.

How do you see the decor of your future house? Make your ideas come to life with the help of a professional home building team. Get in touch with LaFollette Custom Homes in Bryan, TX for excellent home interior design services.



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