It is a subject of much debate: Is this style modern or contemporary? Many use these two style terms interchangeably, making it confusing on where to draw the line. "Modern" is a style of its own, while "contemporary" can encompass many different styles that are current or en vogue. Modern design is often viewed as timeless and iconic, like the work of Eames and Saarinen, whilst contemporary designs may appear current today but may be very outdated in 10 years.

Historically speaking, modern was "form follows function" of the Bauhaus, open floor plans and clean lines. Modern is always forward thinking and innovative as it started as a radical opposition to popular decorative movements of the early 19th century.

Contemporary seems to reflect a catch-all term for any design that is current and not directly referencing historical design styles.

 

Current contemporary designs trending for 2016 - 2017:

The Natural look!

Recent bathroom trade shows in Paris and Milan showed that 2016 trends will focus around natural materials. 2016 is finding trends moving away from artificial materials and into more natural stone and timber.

Timber vanities, seats and accessories showing timber grain will become more prevalent. Timber will be more often used for bathroom floors and even in taps.

Timber will continue to be a prominent feature in our bathrooms, from wall features and open shelving, to hardwood floors and even timber vanities. But be sure to bring in some earthy elements to balance the space out.  Greenery, whites and a patterned tile work beautifully with tactile timber surfaces.

 

Monochrome!

Black and white is always a timeless look, whether you are freshening up with new towels and soap dispensers, or completely changing the space, it is very hard to go past a black and white theme.

Matt black is very in this year and we are seeing more and more taps, showers and accessories readily available. Why not consider a gorgeous pendant over the vanity or bath and change your tapware to matt black for a sleek, classy look.

White freestanding baths are also very much in demand in 2016! Linked with black velvet ottomans and a crystal light fitting, they give the bathroom an air of elegance and a sense of pampering.

The white Carrara porcelain marble look, is incredibly popular. The best thing about porcelain tiles is that they don’t absorb like marble and they are maintenance-free. It will give you the luxury and glamorous look without the price tag.

 

Industrial!

Throughout the later part of 2016 we have found brass, black matte and gunmetal grey are really making a statement within our contemporary bathrooms! These materials in combination with concrete look tiles and simple designs, with minimal detail are really on trend in 2016 - 2017.

Edgy industrial-inspired bathroom designs will be on the up in the later part of 2016 - 2017, which means that so too will the use of concrete in bathing areas. Expect to see this cool, gritty material (or silky smooth if you opt for a polished finish) used not just on bathroom floors but as a wall surface, too.

Concrete can make a space look cold and harsh. Introducing contrasting textures, such as timber, natural fibres and a plush bath mat and towels will help soften the look and add warmth and a welcoming vibe to the scheme.