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In interior design and home decor, there are many styles to choose from. There are the “pure” styles and then the mix-n-match styles. Two of the most common styles are the rustic chic style and the industrial style. Many people think that these styles are one in the same. I am here to explain why they are not the same style. First, a couple of questions.

What do you think of when I say rustic chic? Do you think of a country house, a log cabin with wooden tables and exposed beams? Or do you think of quilts, aged wood reclaimed with chicken wire, and galvanized metal? Both descriptions are correct when it comes to rustic elegance.

Now, what do you think of when I say industrial design style? Do you think of hardwoods, pipes, and other metals? Maybe dark, neutral colors, old typewriters, and wood stoves? If so, you have the right industrial design idea.

Both rustic chic design and industrial design have common elements, but they also have a distinctive difference. Let’s take a look at each one individually and then maybe we can really see the difference.

Rustic chic

The rustic chic design is lighter, more feminine and focuses on natural wood colors or light stains. Like light colored paints and aged woods. Furnishing items would include mismatched hardware, chicken wire, galvanized (rusted) metal, exposed wood beams, and specific wood furniture. The easiest way for me to remember rustic elegance is to think of a perfect little farmhouse on a meadow with its simple colors and used items.


Industrial design is darker and more masculine. It has dark neutral colors and dark woods. It incorporates a large quantity of polished or brushed metals. Common features include exposed ductwork, pipes, and basically anything we try to hide when building a home. Furnishing items include antique metal items, wooden shelves, and things that remind you of America’s hard-working industrial age. An easy way to remember this layout would be to think of a warehouse or commercial kitchen converted to a house or apartment.

These two design styles have many things in common, such as the use of metal woods, but the colors and finishes of those woods and metals are different. It is very common today to find people who mix and match between these two styles to create a rustic industrial style house. They complement each other very well and create a cozy and practical home. You can find many great images of rustic industrial houses on the internet for more details on how they work together.

Whether you decide to design your home in one way or another or mix them up for an even broader spectrum of opportunities, make sure your home says who you are. Your home is a place where you can be yourself! Let it be a perfect window into your soul and show off your rustic or industrial home in style. Have fun decorating your home with your new knowledge.


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