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Modern decor is great, but sometimes it skews a little cold. However, a clutch of new interior design shops have opened that display a much warmer and relaxed sort of contemporary style. This new aesthetic is less like a psychiatrist’s waiting room and more like an artist’s groovy home. 

We’ve drilled down the trends from RH Modern, Serena & Lily and The Apartment by The Line to give you tips for making your own home timelessly comfortable.

Go for Glitz

Sterile chrome can make a room feel cold. Instead, add something glittering to a room, like this chandelier from the new RH Modern collection.

RH Modern, 8772 Beverly Blvd., West Hollywood; 310-652-0323 or

Add Stuffing

Still thinking of modern seating as hard and uncomfortable? RH Modern explodes that cliché by redesigning the traditional chesterfield sofa to be sleek (metal legs and a squared-off frame) but still sumptuous.

Consider Curves

New shop The Apartment by The Line is arranged to look like a real home--except everything is for sale. Throughout the bedroom, kitchen, living room and bath areas, angular lines (couches, counters) are softened by lighting, tables and accessories with curvy shapes. This adds a welcome feel, which counteracts the usual hard edges of modern décor.

The Apartment by The Line, 8463 Melrose Pl., 323-746-5056 or

Black Furniture 597x430

Paint it Black

A whole room full of matchy-matchy brown midcentury modern furniture is passé. Instead, mix in a piece or two of matte black furniture--like this coffee table at The Apartment by the Line--to add some drama to your room.

Layer Patterns

No longer just a study in solid, subtle tones, today’s modern décor celebrates layered patterns in happy colors. The just-opened Serena & Lily shop lets you choose from pre-sewn bedding and custom upholstery.

Serena & Lily, 8422 Melrose Ave.; 323-852-3191 or

Go Natural

A natural material such as wicker, raffia or bamboo warms up a room filled with contemporary or industrial-styled furniture. This Serena & Lily rattan chair is based on a Scandinavian chair from the ’60s; slipped into a room of stiff corners, it’s like a friendly guest at a party.

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