23 Minimalist Design Ideas That Prove Less Is More

photographs above bed
Photo: Edmund Barr

Less is definitely more when it comes to exceptional minimalist design. See how to incorporate the basics of this understated style into your home with our top ideas for minimalist decor.

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Minimalist Glam Kitchen

geometric modern kitchen with serving area and chairs
Edmund Barr

A waterfall peninsula provides a subtle room divider in this condo's open floor plan. Gray flat-panel cabinets, a favorite in minimalist designs, contrast with the white quartz countertops that repeat as a backsplash. Brass hardware, fixtures, and lighting add a luxe touch to the crisp black-and-white kitchen design.

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Minimalist Bedroom with Global Accents

white bedroom with blue accents and orange striped space rug
Dera Burreson

Crisp shiplap walls provide a neutral backdrop for happy doses of orange and blue in this minimalist bedroom. A Moroccan pouf, woven pendant light, and mix of patterns add a gathered-over-time feel.

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Minimalist Floating Shelves

rattan chair desk area shelving
Dana Gallagher

Find unexpected satisfaction in your home's hardworking office with pretty wood beams. Refashioned oak and pine beams from a train station become floating shelves above a classic marble-top iron table. A painted white chair and neutral keepsakes join the converted storage for a work zone that's cool, calm, and collected.

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Minimalist Kitchen with Farmhouse Twist

Shiplap paneling minimalist kitchen
Robert Brinson

Shiplap paneling painted pale gray runs the length of this minimalist kitchen. The absence of upper cabinets showcases high ceilings and allows for unobstructed window views. Oversize light fixtures frame a rustic island accented with uncomplicated metal-base bar stools.

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Scandinavian Style

Neutral living room with Scandinavian style
Victoria Pearson

Uncovered windows let in light that's reflected and amplified by this living room's white walls, a characteristic of Scandinavian style. Natural surfaces and organic fibers—stone, light woods, weathered concrete, wool, and linen—keep the minimalist design casual and comfortable.

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Streamlined Silhouettes

midcentury-modern chairs farm table
Ryann Ford

For sleek seating, look to iconic midcentury-modern chairs, which pop against a rustic farm table. White walls and trim create a gallerylike backdrop for contemporary artwork and an industrial Sputnik-style chandelier. A pink suede rug softens the look.

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Warm Woods

photographs above bed
Edmund Barr

Incorporate natural elements, such as wood, grasses, stone, and organic textiles, into your minimalist design to prevent it from becoming too sterile. A teak platform bed cozies up to wool fabrics and a wood-look nightstand to take the chill of crisp white walls. Amorphous artwork contrasts the sleek lines of the bedroom furniture.

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Cohesive Color Scheme

white living room remodel black fireplace
Seth Smoot

When planning a minimalist design, start with a neutral color scheme. If black-and-white is too stark for your taste, mix in one additional color in varying intensities. Here, blue repeats on large-scale abstract artwork, pillows, books, and blankets to energize a monochromatic color scheme.

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Open Concept Kitchen

steel and glass shelves in open modern kitchen
Brie Williams Photography

Ground minimalist rooms with a few touches of black. In this kitchen, black paint on the window muntins mimics the look of steel. Maintain an unobstructed feeling by opting for open shelves, like this steel-and-glass unit that plays off the windows, versus upper cabinets in a kitchen. Just make sure they're deep enough to hold plates, if that's the intended use.

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Simple Shelving

bookcase detail home art work decor
Edmund Barr

An elongated reclaimed-wood mantel and painted floating shelves provide a low-key alternative to built-ins. Display framed artwork and groups of mementos for a fresh and functional feature wall.

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Modern Minimalist Bedroom

white bedroom with striped navy accents
Seth Smoot

Consider painting walls white in a small minimalist bedroom. The color naturally bounces light around a room and pairs well with contemporary color schemes, like this blue and black palette. Modern plug-in sconces boast clean angles continued on the artwork and striped bedding.

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Small Minimalist Kitchen

white kitchen with floating shelves
Seth Smoot

Affordable IKEA cabinets with flat panels reflect light in this airy L-shape kitchen. The white base cabinets match glossy subway tile, quartz countertops, and a shiplap ceiling. Low-maintenance concrete floors and open shelving featuring steel piping add industrial style.

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Concealed Storage

Living room with white shelving and TV
David Tsay

Painted to match the walls, built-in shelves frame a TV with an uncluttered mix of art and mementos. Flat-panel base cabinets conceal unsightly media, games, and toys to keep the room tidy. Low-back chairs balance the sofa without blocking sightlines.

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Natural Elements

Retro credenza white brick wall
Anthony Masterson

Warm-up a minimalist room by contrasting clean lines with one organic, over-the-top item, such as the showy peacock feathers in this midcentury entryway. A geometric print and a brass-and-wood lamp serve as period-appropriate companions.

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Mix Textures

rawhide-strap chairs wood plank table
Ryann Ford

To build interest without cluttering your minimalist design, arrange just a few noteworthy furniture pieces from different periods and design styles. Here, rawhide-strap chairs partner with an antique plank-top table at the roomy banquette, while bamboo barstools add natural texture nearby. Built-in shelves exhibit a monochromatic collection of ceramics.

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Black-and-White Living Room

Modern style living room with red accents
Emily Followill

Spice up a black-and-white color scheme with hints of bright hues. Orange accent pillows and oversize artwork add visual interest to this neutral family room that features clean-lined furnishings. White ceiling beams recede against identically painted walls and disguise recessed lighting.

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Minimalist Breakfast Nook

Eclectic style dining room tulip table
Ryann Ford

Contrast streamlined shapes to exude modern minimalism. Upholstered chairs and a round tulip table beautifully juxtapose an angular banquette. A capiz shell chandelier sparkles overhead without distracting from expansive views.

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Curated Collections

minimalist decor mirroring furniture
David Tsay

In this minimalist living room, matching artwork above the fireplace and midcentury furniture around a coffee table create perfect symmetry. Square shelving and ceiling panels enhance the eye-pleasing geometrical design. Thoughtfully curated books and small accessories add color to the otherwise neutral room.

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Minimalist Primary Bedroom

Vaulted ceiling in contemporary style bedroom
Paul Dyer

Simple furnishings—just a platform bed with narrow metal nightstands—keep this minimalist primary bedroom serene. An oversize black-and-white photograph creates a focal point under a vaulted ceiling, while bright textiles energize the cozy design.

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Minimalist Desk

cross-leg desk contemporary vanity
Edmund Barr

A cross-leg desk serves as a contemporary vanity perfect for pampering. Carefully curated accessories, like a geometric lamp base and simple wooden planter, fill the space with just enough visual interest. A molded seat with polished chrome hardware makes it easy to enjoy the view from floor-to-ceiling windows framed in black metal.

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Neutral Minimalist Bedroom

Upholstered headboard built-in bed
Ryann Ford

A built-in headboard framed with floating nightstands anchors this primary bedroom in unfussy yet sophisticated fashion. Painted drawer fronts add depth to the wall of wood, while both the rug and headboard boast a honeycomb pattern for continuity.

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Classic Minimalist Furniture

white tulip table with plants
Kim Cornelison

Whether used in an entryway, foyer, or dining room, tulip tables provide the perfect touch of minimalist style. Pair one with retro furniture for a mid-century look or rush chair seats for a farmhouse twist. Modern accessories, including a ceramic urchin that sits within a glass terrarium, elevates this white laminate version.

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Minimalist Platform Bed

Paper lantern in bedroom with builtin bed
Jay Wilde

Minimalist style works especially well in small spaces. A low-profile platform bed with a basic headboard makes the most of this tiny bedroom. Neutral accessories, including painted animal art and a flat-panel dresser, blend with white walls to keep the room uncluttered. A large pendant spray-painted to give the illusion of copper provides a funky focal point.

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