There is no simple formula to follow with regards the interior design of a home, and in particular with features such as mouldings, and as with most things relating to your home styling, whether you can mix modern mouldings with traditional mouldings is a decision entirely rooted in your own tastes and preferences. But fundamentally the answer to this question is ‘YES!’ but we say that with a big slice of caution attached.
Ideally, mouldings of different types ‘should’ match, but whether skirting boards and architrave next to each other work together is more influenced by size and proportion rather than design. So different profiles ‘can’ work together, it’s just not an automatic thing that they ‘always’ work together, and whether they ‘do’ work together is really up to the individual.
Considerations when mixing different styles of mouldings
Homes can be both modern and traditional in their interior design, particularly because “classic” styles often come back into fashion and are considered contemporary anyway. Some designs which are considered “modern” include rustic, bohemian or Scandinavian, while the modern ‘minimalist’ look was also fashionable in periods of the 1960s and 1970s.
So styles do blend if you match things with a careful eye. Also, many traditional homes have high ceilings and lots of wall space, so present something of a blank canvass and hence more space to mix styles and get away with it, whereas smaller rooms in a modern home, for example, may be a harder environment in which to mix styles.
On the face of it, mixing different styles of mouldings in the same room would be a no-no, and you would maintain the same design style in one room where you could, and restrict changes in style to adjoining corridors and rooms. However, if you keep the size and thickness of the mouldings the same, ie. the proportions, then different styles of architrave and skirtings ‘can’ work together. Here you are thinking about how the profiles share the same curves, steps or sharp lines. Contemporary skirtings tend to have simple lines and steps, rather than curves, but there are some designs within the Edwardian, Victorian and Georgian ranges which have no curves and only lines. Some of these mouldings from different design periods could work together.
How to mix modern mouldings with traditional mouldings
Another consideration is to use corner blocks, plinth blocks or skirting blocks to separate two different designs. While you don’t want to mix designs that are too messy or busy, installing a block in between adds some neutrality and allows the eye to separate the two spaces. Hence the designs are less likely to clash.
Because modern styles often incorporate a clean-line aesthetic, it becomes easier to introduce another style that works with it and isn’t necessarily the same. So yes, modern mouldings can be mixed with traditional mouldings, but it is much harder to introduce different traditional mouldings within that. So we would definitely recommend only mixing one period moulding with a contemporary moulding, for example ie. Victorian only, or Edwardian only, not Victorian ‘and’ Edwardian.
If you need more advice on mixing mouldings styles, get in touch with Period Mouldings and speak to our sales experts. We will be happy to talk through your design ideas and advise on what might work together, and ultimately ensure you get the interior design result you want.