How Designers Are Achieving Refined Modernism in Their Mood Board Projects

If you read our 2024 Interior Trends Forecast, then you’d be familiar with the trend ‘refined modernism’. This interior design trend is found within so many different styles as it’s the result of fusing elements of modern minimalism with natural connection. Think organic tones, textures, palettes, and materials, blended with functionality and contemporary influences. 

This trend has certainly been embraced within our design community, with so many mood boards exuding a little or a lot of refined modernism. We wanted to dive a little deeper into refined modernism and showcase a few recent mood board projects to demonstrate just how you can bring this trend into your space. 

A Look Inside Refined Modernism

Refined modernism is a trend that focuses on so much more than just aesthetics (although this is still a key factor). Essentially, refined modernism aims to ground, while simultaneously creating a functional space. And this isn’t just limited to practical products. This also includes the way you move around your home and how each piece of furniture and décor creates connection within the room. 

Bethany, the Content Marketing Coordinator at Style Sourcebook, gave us some insight into what we can expect from this trend. “It’s all about state-of-the-art functionality, neutral tones, and rich minimalism,” notes Bethany, “We saw an increasing response to modern content that featured refined, yet natural influences. I think we’ll see an even better response throughout 2024.”

Image credit: SJS Interior Design | Tom Ferguson  

Achieving Refined Modernism


Functionality is at the forefront of this interior design trend. We recommend first focusing on form, before moving on to other aspects such as furniture and fittings. Taking a look at Sarah Bragias bathroom mood board, we love how beautifully it demonstrates the functionality of the space, from the basic practicality of the bathtub to how the curves of different products will work to create flow and movement around the room. 

Because after all, there’s no point in having an aesthetically pleasing space that doesn’t serve a purpose within your home. 

Mood board created by Sarah Bragias on Style Sourcebook. View mood board here.

Modern Influences

Modern influences are the aesthetic stars of the show when it comes to this trend. You want your furniture and décor to be understated, contemporary, and a little luxurious. We also recommend opting for quality over quantity to really elevate that refined approach. Minimalism is key here meaning less is more, however, this doesn’t translate to creating an underwhelming space. For example, this contemporary dining mood board from Arc + Arlo illustrates just how impactful modern minimalist pieces can be. 

Mood board created by Arc + Arlo on Style Sourcebook. View mood board here.

Natural Connection

This laidback mood board from Stevie Renae Interiors perfectly demonstrates how natural connection can cohesively fit with modern elements. Connecting your space to nature doesn’t always have to be done through plants, you can also add organic touches through natural materials, such as jute rugs, stone, and rattan. 

Mood board created by Stevie Renae Interiors on Style Sourcebook. View mood board here.

Organic, Grounding Palettes

Kanla Perla has completely achieved a grounding palette in this luxurious mood board. It’s opulent yet feels warm and inviting - exactly what an organic palette aims to achieve, especially within refined modernism. To create this within your own space, choose a tonal variation you love and really stick with it. This might be warm whites, with hints of terracotta, or soft greys with touches of blue and green. No matter what palette you choose, the aim is to stay consistent within those organic tones.   

Mood board created by K A N L A P E R L A on Style Sourcebook. View mood board here.

We hope you’ve loved taking a deeper dive into the refined modern interior design trend. Discover more forecasted trends for 2024 or find further inspiration from our incredible design community in our mood board library.