Modern and Contemporary Style Tips

Furnishing your home in a modern or contemporary style exudes a sleek atmosphere. Neutral tones and linear pieces accentuate an orderly state, leading to a simple environment. Despite the simplicity in color, pattern, and forms, modern or contemporary furnishing does not imply that your space can not also possess intricacy.

modern contemporary buffetChoosing the correct furniture to work with or contrast with other pieces can bring out a dramatic effect. By simply working with various tones, one can introduce a range of emotions besides a sleek or clean look. Different shapes can play with one another in order to interrupt a mundane appearance.

Modern and contemporary does not indicate that furnishing has to remain the same tone throughout a room. There are tricks one can use in order to maintain this particular style while simultaneously adding a contrasting element to break up the singular tone.

The Compar Vanity Buffet picture on the right is a perfect example of introducing this particular style while also possessing various tones. The walls and floors of this interior setting are white, a common element found in modern homes. The buffet and chairs are also white but instead of blending into its surroundings the pop of wood integrated into the furniture separates it from the rest of the room. The room still maintains its modern style while also combining two mediums to add a different emotion. The style is not compromised through the wood element but rather adds a certain warmth.

modern contemporary table In the case of contemporary homes, the color white is replaced by solid walls of darker tones. The Mambo Table by Domus Design showcases a contemporary style while also integrating color. The walls and floors are of the same dark tone and the clear table allows it to blend further into the room. By making the table legs and the chairs red, a break from the same dark color is introduced. This room contains elements of contemporary design but the addition of red allows the eyes to direct themselves to something else.

If you would like to have a modern or contemporary atmosphere to your home you are not limited to only sleek, bold characteristics. The addition of varying tones, contrasting colors or mediums can be a wonderful introduction to this style. One will be able to have the clean, polished appearance of these styles while also adding other elements to give it your own twist.

The Intricacies of Wood Inlay

Wood inlay has existed as a form of decoration for centuries, practiced in various countries and cultures at different points in time. This form of decoration continues to this day, maintaining the same level of elegance and artistry that it has evoked for years.

urbino wood inlayOne of the most famous pieces of furniture inlay was made during 15th century Europe for Federico da Montefeltro in his Ducal Palace at Urbino (pictured on the right). The wood inlay was extremely intricate, displaying various objects interacting with one another and forced perspective. The charm of wood inlay derives from the ability to depict objects and shapes as if they are protruding from a furniture’s surface but are in fact flat to the touch. The various combination of wood and how they interact with one another provides a play on perspective; making a piece of furniture stand out even more.

This process in decoration is extremely detailed and requires hours of labor in order to correctly apply the various pieces of wood. Pieces of furniture with wood inlay add an additional decorative element to any home. Instead of opting for just wood finishes, adding a product of a similar medium with the added design of the inlay can make a great addition.

The contrasting tones of wood melding together to create a singular piece of furniture, give the piece more depth as perspective plays a huge role in its design. Even a minimalist design, like the table by Angelo Cappellini pictured above, can provide depth and a certain atmosphere to any room.

Considering a New Office Chair

While purchasing an office desk is something that is taken into great consideration, an office chair is often not included in this important process.

office chairThose with jobs in an office setting spend about 40 hours a week sitting at their desks. On average, this adds up to an astonishing 2000 hours a year. Considering the amount of time that one stays seated at work, choosing the correct chair that suits your needs is important. It can lead to a comfortable environment and increase in productivity. An incorrect chair can lead to inefficiency at the work place and can cause unnecessary body strain. There are steps that must be taken when considering an office chair. Steps that both benefit the employee and the work environment, maintaining style and elegance without compromising either.


  • plenty of back support
  • prevent back strain
  • allows one to relax in various positions
  • follow curve of the back


  • arms and height adjustments
  • shoulder adjustments
  • feet rest comfortably on the floor


  • Wheel base – rolling to prevent strain and easy mobility
  • Swivel – easy mobility and covers more area to reach
  • Material – breathable fabric preventing user from getting hot
  • Cushioning – to make the user more comfortable

Despite all the factors one must take into consideration, this does not indicate that one has to sacrifice style for comfort. There are a variety of office chairs that are functional but also maintain the tone of your office.

Interior Design Series: Painting the House

Colors act in three basic ways: active, passive and neutral. You can easily match every room’s colors to your personal desires, to your taste and to the room’s purpose. Light colors are expansive and airy, making rooms seem larger and brighter. Dark colors are sophisticated and warm; they give large rooms a more intimate appearance. Having beautiful Italian furniture is sure to make any room standout, but having the right color scheme will offer the right mood for the right room. From having a serene bedroom, to a lively living room and dining room, the colors, tones, and hues are proven to affect moods.

Here is a color breakdown for interior design thought:

Red raises a room’s energy level. The most intense color, it pumps the adrenaline like no other hue. It is a good choice when you want to stir up excitement, particularly at night. In the living room or dining room, red draws people together and stimulates conversation. In an entryway, it creates a strong first impression.Red has been shown to raise blood pressure and speed respiration and heart rate. It is usually considered too stimulating for bedrooms, but if you’re typically in the room only after dark, you’ll be seeing it mostly by lamplight, when the color will appear muted, rich and elegant.

Yellow captures the joy of sunshine and communicates happiness. It is an excellent choice for kitchens, dining rooms and bathrooms, where it is energizing and uplifting. In halls, entries and small spaces, yellow can feel expansive and welcoming. Even though yellow although is a cheery color, it is not a good choice for main color schemes. Studies show that people are more likely to lose their temper in a yellow interior. Babies also seem to cry more in yellow rooms. In large amounts, this color tends to create feelings of frustration and anger. In chromotherapy, yellow is believed to stimulate the nerves and purify the body.

Blue is said to bring down blood pressure and slow respiration and heart rate. That is why it is considered calming, relaxing and serene, and it is often recommended for bedrooms and bathrooms. A pastel blue that looks pretty on the paint chip can come across as unpleasantly chilly on the walls and furnishings, however, especially in a room that receives little natural light. If you opt for a light blue as the primary color in a room, balance it with warm hues for the furnishings and fabrics.

To encourage relaxation in social areas such as family rooms, living rooms or large kitchens, consider warmer blues, such as periwinkle, or bright blues, such as cerulean or turquoise. Blue is known to have a calming effect when used as the main color of a room — but go for softer shades. Dark blue has the opposite effect, evoking feelings of sadness. Refrain from using darker blues in your main color scheme.

Green is considered the most restful color for the eye. Combining the refreshing quality of blue and the cheerfulness of yellow, green is suited for almost any room on the house. In the kitchen, green cools things down; in a family room or living room, it encourages unwinding but has enough warmth to promote comfort and togetherness.Green also has a calming effect when used as a main color for decorating. It is believed to relieve stress by helping people relax. It is also believed to help with fertility, making it a great choice for the bedroom.

Purple, in its darkest values (eggplant, for example), is rich, dramatic and sophisticated. It is associated with luxury and creativity; as an accent or secondary color, it gives a scheme depth. Lighter versions of purple, such as lavender and lilac, bring the same restful quality to bedrooms as blue does, but without the risk of feeling chilly.

Orange evokes excitement and enthusiasm, and is an energetic color. While not a good idea for a living room or for bedrooms, this color is great for an exercise room; it will bring out all the emotions that you need released during your fitness routine. In ancient cultures, orange was believed to heal the lungs and increase energy levels.

Neutrals (black, gray, white and brown) are basic to the decorator’s tool kit. All-neutral schemes fall in and out of fashion, but their virtue lies in their flexibility: Add color to liven things up; subtract it to calm things down.

Black is best used in small doses as an accent. Indeed, some experts maintain that every room needs a touch of black to ground the color scheme and give it depth. To make the job easier, rely on the interior designer’s most important color tool: the color wheel.

All of these colors can be accented, contrasted, or matched with beautiful Italian furniture, Italian fabrics, and Italian leathers from our brands.

Michelangelo Designs on NBC on October 31, at 9AM

Michelangelo Designs is happy to announce that it has partnered with George to the Rescue, and NBC TV show that helps renovate one family’s home per episode, to create a beautiful, functional, and warm home for a loving family. We were happy to partner with home improvement specialist and TV host,  George Oliphant, and interior designer Sheila Rich, of Sheila Rich Interiors, to help a loving family realize a dream home.

“They brought the love, and we brought the furniture!”

Filming of “George to the Rescue” was completed in mid-October, and will be airing as and “Treat” on Trick or Treat day, Halloween at 9am on NBC.

To learn more about the show, check out the George to the Rescue website here

And feel free to tweet us @michelangelodsn during the show using #GTTR (George to the Rescue)

The Euro is Down, Americans Can Buy Italian Furniture for Historically Low Prices

With the Euro coming down to historically low levels, lower than the original inception of the Euro, Americans can afford the finest Italian products like never before. When the Euro was originally released in 2004, it was valued at $1.20 USD, however it jumped up to as high as $1.58. Even over the course of the past 12 months it was as high as $1.39, but a developing crisis in Greece coupled with a strong American Dollar has given buyers an opportunity they have not yet had: to buy European goods for cheap. Even traveling to Europe is affordable now, after a recent 20% drop in currency value against the US Dollar.

This means that the high quality items from French wines to Italian furniture are roughly 20% lower price than they were one year ago today. Michelangelo Designs is at the forefront of the Italian resurgence as our brands have an opportunity to excel under these current global financial conditions.

Italy remains at the forefront of both the fashion and interior design worlds, renowned for its innovations, quality, and workmanship, Italy continues to rely on these two exports, and Michelangelo Designs is proud to carry 100% of Italy’s best export.