Contemporary vs. Transitional Style

Contemporary Style

Transitional Style Repurposed Rocker

Did you know that you might have a preference when it comes to the style of furniture you choose and not realize it? Often times, people choose furniture that they feel speaks to his or her style, personality, or taste. At Danziger Design, we will work with you to determine what style will not only fit your home, but also fit you and your family. Recognizing differences in style is a great place to start when determining what furniture you want in your home.

Two furniture styles that are popular in the Washington Metropolitan area are contemporary and transitional. What is the difference between these two styles? Let’s take a look!

Contemporary Style

Typically, contemporary designs feature minimal to no accessories compared to other designs that emphasize decoration and style. With contemporary furniture, patterns are subtle and smooth profiles are expected. “Simple and sleek” is a great way to describe this style. However, the designs may be simple, but the statement made with contemporary furniture is bold.

When it comes to color choices, choose tone-on-tone color palettes. Tan, beige, cream, black, and white are very common color choices when considering a contemporary style. You can add a pop of color with wall art, rugs, and other simple accessories.

Recently, Danziger Design repurposed a vintage rocker to complement a client’s contemporary style. In the photo you will notice the straight lines, neutral colors, and sleek design that fit the contemporary style description. With contemporary furniture, the goal is to incorporate neutral elements with straight lines and smooth features.

Transitional style

Contemporary Style Paleck Chair

Transitional Style
If you love the contemporary design and traditional design, consider combining the two. Traditional style emphasizes classic elements and craftsmanship through decor and furniture. Compared to contemporary, traditional is often considered warmer and less sleek. Marrying these styles will give you an interesting design: transitional.

Transitional style is a blend of the sleek, modern, contemporary design with the warm, well-crafted, timeless traditional design. By balancing the two styles, Danziger Design can create a beautiful, edgy if desired, transitional design in your home.

To achieve a transitional design, little to no bold colors will invoke a tranquil and clean atmosphere. The lack of color will allow you to include bolder patterns in fabric that ties in the traditional design with the contemporary design.

Using the straight lined Palecek chair in the bleached finish that was mentioned above, Danziger Design allowed the contemporary style to shine and surprise alongside other furniture. The traditional style was represented through the repurposed classic rocking chair. Combining the two styles made for a perfect, transitional style in this client’s home.

No matter what your preferences are when it comes to style, Danziger Design can help you achieve your dream design. Take a moment to view our portfolio to see some of our design work. Danziger Design serves Maryland, Washington, D.C., and Northern Virginia. If you are interested in our interior design services, please contact us, today!

Danziger Design in Home and Design Magazine’s Portfolio – 100 Top Designers

It’s out and we’re in it. Home & Design Magazine’s Portfolio: 100 Top Designers came out this month and we wanted to share it with you. It’s exciting to be a part of this publication featuring Interior Designers in MD, VA and DC.


When you pick up your copy, turn to pages 194-195 where some of our projects in West Chester, PA, Potomac, MD, Bethesda, MD, and the 2012 Showhouse in Washington, DC appear. In the meantime, we couldn’t wait to show you…



Interior Design in McLean and Chevy Chase

We wanted to share some of our recently photographed Interior Design projects with you…

The first pictured below is a transitional family room in McLean, VA. This favorite hangout incorporates new furniture, rug from C.G. Coe & Son and window treatments with treasured family pieces such as framed pieces, sculptures and musical instruments. This blending creates a warm, inviting and user friendly space to gather, play games, or spend quiet down-time.

Family Room - Interior Design - McLean, VA

This sunny spot serves as an area for conversation or a great place to curl up with a good read. The addition of plants truly brings the outdoors in.

Family Room - Interior Design - McLean, VA

An area next to the the sofa welted in royal blue provides a metal and glass console with clever basket storage tucked below. The baskets add a dimension of texture to the room while being highly practical at the same time. Not shown in the picture is a custom cabinet built into a former closet and a game table with chairs.

Family Room - Interior Design - McLean, VA

Traveling the beltway to Maryland, the family room in this Chevy Chase home provides a completely different feel. The furniture style and clean lines give this room a more contemporary look than the previous family room. The sofa features a rich looking tobasco colored Pollack fabric. The custom-made, decorative-painted bookcases store a bevy of books and family collectibles. The smartly designed Randolph and Hein table blends raffia panels with rich mahogany.

Family Room - Interior Design - Chevy Chase, MD

Enter through the door on the far left to be greeted by the sounds of piano music. Aside from the handsome piano, this light-filled elegantly appointed music room features custom draperies, a klismos-style chair by David Iatesta and a bench by Michael James furniture covered in a textured cream fabric by Calvin.

Music Room - Interior Design - Chevy Chase, MD

Thanks for taking the time to view these projects!

The Layering Process – A Bedroom Takes Shape – Interior Design in MD, DC and VA

The design process can be likened to the layering of a cake or a lasagna. In Interior Design, layers usually begin at the bottom and work their way up until the final product is achieved.

In a recent Falls Church, VA bedroom project, we began with a navy and cream area rug from C.G. Coe & Son, Inc. as the room’s first and stabilizing layer upon which all other pieces would be added.

Area Rug

Next came the bed, or more specifically, the custom headboard we designed and had fabricated by Oliver’s Furniture and Delivery. We selected a neutral gray tweed fabric for the headboard. The shape and button trim adds to the personality of the headboard.

Headboard fabric

Upholstered Headboard

In order to keep decorating costs lower, the client purchased ready made bedding. We gave the bed a custom look by having a pillow fabricated in a stylized floral patterned fabric. And although not seen in any of our photos, the window treatments have been fabricated in the same fabric.

Stylized floral fabric

Side tables were selected from the American Eye Showroom in the Washington Design Center for each side of the bed, and to keep things interesting THEY DO NOT MATCH, but are both made with metal and painted wood to make them congruous.

Night table with drawer

Night table

Next, we again enlisted the skills of Oliver’s Furniture and Delivery to fabricate the bench at the end of the bed according to our specifications. It is upholstered in a sturdy vinyl and adorned with polished chrome nail heads.

upholstered bench with nail heads

And a closeup of the nail head detail…upholstered bench with nail heads

But the layering does not end here. The room still needs accessories which can be likened to the chocolate shavings on top of a cake or the asiago cheese sprinkled on lasagna. Lamps, artwork, a throw blanket and other accessories will give this room a finished look.

Home. Work. This MD, VA, DC Interior Designer Knows How to Blend the Two.

We recently worked with a lovely repeat client to help her better blend and yet separate the lines between home and work in her Chevy Chase, MD home.

TRANSLATION: Very busy wife, mom of twins, and business executive needed a space in her home to become an office for some serious work. Her previous office was off the mudroom in a busy and noisy part of the home – this was not at all conducive to work.

We looked to a guest suite in the basement complete with a large room for an office, an adjacent room for storage and a bathroom across the hall. A door can be added later to make this a true “office suite”.

We started the process by presenting the client with three floor plans and together we determined this one would best suit her needs…

Office Floor Plan

After new recessed lighting was installed, we began with a new wall to wall carpet from C.G. Coe & Son in a sturdy and attractive nylon, perfect for a lower level room.

Fabrica carpet

A large workspace with plenty of surface area and cabinet storage was a must. We looked to our commercial office sources for a combination maple desk, cabinets, and bridge. The look is transitional and chrome hardware complements the look.

desk, cabinets, bridge

satin chrome hardware

We added two schoolhouse style sconces with clear Edison bulbs on each side of the back wall with a dual purpose in mind: to provide light and to provide visual interest. The third benefit was the very attractive ambiance these lights provide. The client plans to place a chair she already owns in this corner.

Schoolhouse style sconce

A TV was mounted above a shelf unit purchased from a popular catalog retailer. The piece provides a place for accents and accessories.


A sleep sofa was placed directly opposite of the desk unit and provides a comfortable place to catch up on reading materials or even grab a rejuvenating cat nap. We know the client will laugh when she reads the nap part!

Queen sleep sofa

Three custom made pillows adorn the sofa; two square in a floral fabric welted in taupe, and a self-welted rectangular pillow in a chain-link pattern. The sofa has a pull-out queen mattress to accommodate guests when necessary.

Custom made pillows

The large and small windows were casually treated with faux wood blinds in a finish that brings everything together.

Hunter Douglas Everwoods

The bathroom directly across from the office was given a partial renovation. The tub/shower, toilet, and tile remained as is. We designed a simple painted wood vanity with shaker-style doors fabricated by our cabinet maker.

Bathroom vanity

The vanity received a quartzite top (that was a remnant), undermount sink and graceful faucet.

quartzite and undermount sink

The final touch in the room was a wall covering with a grey trellis pattern on a white background.

Trellis wall covering

A new silver and wood framed mirror and chrome square knobs will soon be added.

The same taupey faux wood blinds in the office adorn the window in the bathroom.

Hunter Douglas Everwood

During a recent conversation, the client expressed her delight with the office space and at being able to close the door during a recent business phone call; a simple act that further helped separate work from home.

The (mostly) finished product…