Design Details

What makes a house a home? Is there a way to pull off creating a space that feels clean and lived-in at the same time? In my opinion the goal with interior design is to find that fine balance of old and new – a hint of history with a dash of current tastes. We rent our home and I cannot wait for the day when we own. I dream of window treatments, built-in bookcases, and customized carpets. When that day comes I plan on consulting Horton Design Associates where the very talented Stephanie Horton works alongside her mother-in-law Mimi. The spaces they create are divine. They feel fresh while also having a unique sense of history and character. Steph was kind enough to share some images from her recent projects with us. Below she walks us through some of her favorite design details. I gravitate towards “Young Traditional”. How about you?

Wise Words from Stephanie Horton of Horton Design Associates:
(203.326.1090 –

So often young families find it daunting to define their style and then translate it into a home design that is livable and practical for their lifestyles. We’re resistant to the idea of replicating our childhood home with our parents style, but comforted by the familiar and the time-tested.

At Horton Design Associates we have crafted a look that is neither traditional nor contemporary. It is a fusion of styles, periods, and cultures which is interesting and sophisticated but also clean, fresh and young. We mix classic, urban, traditional, and modern elements until the perfect balance is achieved for each client. We believe that this blend will result in a timeless space that will defy labels and endure ever changing trends.

Below we will take a look at 4 key styles that we use to achieve this balance. Hopefully you will find some inspiration to use in your own homes. Most importantly, we believe that everyone should experience the joy of living with things they love!

Young Traditional: classic, soothing and quiet, with a focus on art or views

With the “Young Traditional” interior, the focus is on soothing quiet tones, classic furniture shapes (perhaps updated in painted finishes), and a focus on art or outdoor views. When the room backgrounds are neutral, it allows the furniture and art to shine. And if you’ve got a great view, let it be the star!

Worldly: exotic, with an ethnic flair

The “Worldly” design style is heavily influenced by exotic locales such as India, Africa, China or the Middle East. Textiles and furniture often have an ethnic flair… such as suzani, ikat or batik fabrics, bone inlay furniture, Asian accent pieces, and animal prints. It is subtle, as you don’t want to create a stage set, but far-flung influences clearly permeate the design.

Modern: contemporary art with touches of classic style


The “Modern” style incorporates contemporary art and furniture into an otherwise traditional canvas. Again it is nuanced not overt, but it results in a streamlined, confident interior. Pop-art, Mid-Century, and modern elements say ‘I’m not afraid to mix yesterday with today’.  It’s hip, retro and very American.

Whimsical: pops of color, playful, and fun

The “Whimsical” interior is all about pops of color, playful elements, and having fun. It’s sophisticated, but it doesn’t take itself too seriously. The whimsy can be achieved through unexpected paint colors and combinations, accessories, fabrics, or furniture… for example a Caviar lamp, stripes and stars, beach ball pillows, apple green fabric and accessories…  Have some fun!

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