Seven Ways To Elevate Modern Homes

Modern design offers a beautiful starting point to make small changes and have a big design impact.

Modern design can be beautiful but it can also be cold and overly simple. Fortunately, modern homes are some of the easiest spaces to elevate. Even just one change can create a major design impact. Whether you are currently living in, looking for, or building a modern home, here are seven ways to improve these spaces as seen in some of the top modern luxury homes on the market in 2022.  

Statement Staircases

interior view of a modern staircase with a piano underneath

These floating steps pair beautifully with the large double height windows behind them. (Hilton & Hyland)

Any modern home that is at least two stories should have a grand statement staircase. We see a great example of this at this Brentwood modern farmhouse. The wood staircase is quite simply jaw-dropping. From the rails to the continuation of the wood underneath, it gives this six-bedroom,  home true character. But the most creative part of the design is how the stairs pair with the soaring windows behind them, making the floating steps feel even more immersive. It’s an incredible use of the space. 

Finished Laundry Room

Laundry rooms used to be utility rooms of sorts—undecorated small spaces with a washer and dryer and perhaps a sink and folding table. Today, the bar has been set much higher for these rooms in modern homes. The laundry room at this modern farmhouse in Tualatin, Oregon, is an ideal example of how a laundry room can have major appeal to buyers. This room features matching floors and shiplap walls, giving it true farmhouse character. The marble countertop and classic shaker cabinets are clean and simple. The black hardware is a sleek touch that is very much on-trend right now. This room has plenty of storage for all the laundry accouterments from detergent to dryer sheets and other supplies. 

interior view of a finished laundry room

With double washer and dryers in this finished laundry room, this modern approach is also incredibly functional. (LUXE)

Better yet, there are two washers and dryers. With six bedrooms, it is essential—no need to deliberate over washing light and dark loads first.

Matching Countertop and Backsplash

interior view of a kitchen with a sleek modern design

Matching the countertops with the backsplash ties the kitchen together in a sophisticated way. (LUXE)

One of the most popular kitchen trends in recent years is a matching countertop and backsplash. As long as it’s cut from the same stone (so be sure to measure properly and purchase enough at the stone yard), it provides a clean, seamless look, as seen in the same Tualatin, Oregon, modern farmhouse. The Carrara marble goes all the way up to the ceiling, giving the kitchen a sleek, finished feel. 

Read More: Eight Ways You Never Thought To Use Tile

Dark Marble Kitchens

interior view of a kitchen with dramatic black marble detail

This dramatic kitchen uses black marble to create contrast with the rest of the space. (Elegran)

Dark marble kitchens became very popular in 2022. It’s a masculine aesthetic appreciated by home chefs and design aficionados alike. The dark stone and cabinetry truly pop against the wood island at this chic Lower East Side condo in New York City. It also contains the white cabinetry of the island. We only see this look becoming more popular and potentially replacing white kitchens in the years to come. 


Many people think that wallpaper looks best in more traditional and contemporary homes, but it can work just as well in modern spaces. We see this at 161 West 15th Street, Apartment 5B, in New York City. It not only helps to establish the home office space but also adds true pizzazz to the living room. 

interior view of a living room with a wallpaper accent

A pop of wallpaper adds character to this room and also designates the office desk as a work space. (Elegran)

However, this is not the only way to install wallpaper in modern homes. Wallpaper elevates bedrooms and or even powder rooms instantly, where there is a true opportunity to do something very unique with design. While you can use conventional wallpaper, you may also want to consider peel-and-stick wallpaper in rooms where you may not want the same design for more than a few years, such as children’s bedrooms and baby nurseries. You can also install peel-and-stick wallpaper on your own as a weekend project.

Fluted Walls

Interior view of a home with fluted walls

These wooden fluted walls add warmth despite their geometric design. (Moreland Properties)

Fluted walls have been having a moment for the past several years. It’s easy to understand why. They add an interesting texture. We see fluted wall design at its best at 1607 Mohle Drive in Austin, Texas. Not only does the wall complement the furniture and vintage fireplace in the living room, but it also coordinates with the exterior fluting of the property. Previously featured in the distinguished publication Dwell magazine, this home was designed by legendary Austin architect Kevin Alter of Alterstudio.

Read More: Interior Designers Dish On Choosing The Perfect Rug For Any Room

Double-sided Fireplace

A modern take on the traditional fireplace, this design element still evokes the feeling of being at the heart of a home. (Hilton & Hyland)

Fireplaces can be beautifully old-fashioned but they can also be very modern. Instantly, they take any modern living room to an entirely new level of wow as at this wonderful condo located at 10790 Wilshire Boulevard in Los Angeles. Cool but also practical, it illuminates the living room and adds a unique accent to the home office.



I am a writer, design expert, host of the podcast Bougie Adjacent, and comedic performer. I am absolutely fascinated by all aspects of décor and design. It once took me six months to choose a soap dispenser and I can’t even remember what it looked like. I like bright prints, southern exposure and any location you can call a “village or town.” There are currently over 100 episodes of House Hunters on my DVR.

Properties You Might Also Like