When you think of what’s hot in interior design right now, do your dad’s wingback chairs and grandma’s ornate chandeliers come to mind? Well, maybe they should. A new study by Joybird, a custom furniture company, revealed that Victorian is the interior design style that wins the popularity vote in more U.S. states than any other decor style.
But hold off on a full “Age of Innocence” home makeover. Crown molding and floral wallpaper might reign supreme in 10 states, but that doesn’t mean stuffy Victorian style is on the rise across the country. In fact, trendsetting states such as California and New York actually preferred transitional and contemporary styles, respectively.
“Traditionally, home styles begin on either coast and work toward the center of the country,” says John B. Chadwick Jr., an interior designer in New York City.
The study compared the most-searched interior design terms in each state, based on Google Trends data over the past 12 months.
The states where Victorian style is No. 1 are Nevada, Nebraska, Missouri, Indiana, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Maine, Connecticut, Rhode Island, and Delaware.
Bohemian, the No. 2 style, was the top search term in nine states: Alaska, Montana, North Dakota, Alabama, Georgia, North Carolina, West Virginia, New Hampshire, and New Jersey.
Take a look at the rest of the most searched styles in the chart below.
Contemporary and transitional styles dominate on the coasts
Anyone who wants to stay on the pulse of the next big thing in design has long known to look to New York and California, and the study confirms it.
“The design and fashion industries and other businesses on the East and West coasts help drive the trends,” says Bonnie J. Steves, an interior designer in New York City.
Of particular interest to many design mavens is contemporary style, which has taken root in New York. The style encompasses a range of different trends developed in the latter half of the 20th century, featuring rounded lines and a mix of bold and neutral shades.
“Contemporary style in particular will permeate in coming years,” says Steves. “We live in such a connected, digital society that someone can see something that’s trending in New York and immediately have access to it in Kansas City.”
Contemporary was also the top searched style in Texas. Houston-based architect and interior designer Lauren Rottet says she has been seeing a lot more homes spotlighting the style being built in the Houston and Dallas areas.
“All the 30-somethings I know are very contemporary or Mid-Century Modern,” she says. “I think the home [reality] shows may be influencing this.”
Photo by New Generation Home Improvements – Contemporary kitchens like this one are trending in states such as Texas, New York, and Virginia.
The transitional style favored in California is a more accessible look that melds two different aesthetics: modern and traditional.
“Transitional has some key elements of classic, timeless design but offers modern convenience with simple lines and profiles,” says Eric Tsai, director of marketing for Joybird. “People in California seem to like the mix and match of old and new more than staying within a defined style.”
“California culture is one of constant transitions,” says interior designer Linda Kitson of Summit, NJ. She favors such features as whitewashed oak beams, natural light, and bronze-framed windows.
Photo by R.P. Morrison Builders, Inc. – This transitional living room in Portland, ME, perfectly balances a number of styles into one crowd-pleasing space.
Is coastal on the way out?
South Carolina was the only state where coastal was the most searched style, which could indicate that people in general are cooling to the trend.
“It is surprising to me that coastal was only popular in one state,” says Steves. “I thought it would have been big in Maine, Rhode Island, Florida, and Massachusetts around Cape Cod.”
How does your home’s style stack up against the most popular style in your state? Check out the list below.
Arkansas: Shabby chic
Idaho: Shabby chic
Louisiana: Shabby chic
Minnesota: Mid-Century Modern
Mississippi: Shabby chic
New Hampshire: Bohemian
New Jersey: Bohemian
New Mexico: Art Deco
New York: Contemporary
North Carolina: Contemporary
North Dakota: Bohemian
Rhode Island: Vintage
South Carolina: Coastal
South Dakota: Western
Tennessee: Shabby chic
Utah: Modern farmhouse
Washington: Mid-Century Modern
West Virginia: Bohemian