Besides speaking a common language with slight dialect and writing variation, the European and American homes are entirely different.
If you’re an advent fan of house-flipping or travel shows, you can notice key differences in home design. With a single trip from Europe to the US or vice-versa, you can know various architectural differences at one glance.
Knowing the difference between American and European homes is a concern for designers looking to renovate or construct a new house incorporating the best features from both worlds.
It also comes in handy for designers who want to infuse a home design with an across-continent interior design concept.
While architecture in European countries stayed true to its roots, the US had many different migrants that influenced the country’s architectural design.
Apart from this, there are many areas where the interior design of American and European home is different.
We have a whole list waiting for you!
Comparing interior design of European and American homes
Here are a few key interior design aspects where these two continents differ from each other:
1. Floor planning
The way people construct their floor plan is perhaps a significant difference between these two continents. The American floor plan promotes open living space, whereas Europeans prefer to separate all rooms from one another.
You can create an open living space in an American home using free home design software where you connect two rooms with an open plan.
Also, in many US homes, you will find that all rooms connect into one big living area. In an American home, it’s common to see an interior that connects with your kitchen, living space, and dining room.
They focus on such a floor plan because Americans prefer to spend their time indoors with families, and even when they’re not living in the same room, they can spend time together by accessing the living area.
However, Europeans are slowly shifting their home design towards an open-plan and not preferring rooms that are cut-off from each other.
Design software like Foyr Neo can help you create floor plans as per expectation. From creating multi-story 3D floor plans to designing the layout of each room, this software provides a 360-degree rendering of your home design.
In Europe, kitchens are entirely separated from the rest of the house because preparing food for guests in the open is considered unglamorous. As a result, Europeans prefer eating in a dining room rather than their kitchen where they cook food.
Also, as the dining area is separate, the kitchen of a European house is small in size, provide less light and less counter space than American homes.
You can even notice a significant difference in the cabinets because Europeans use frameless cabinets while Americans use framed cabinets. Interior designs in European countries are generally simplistic, have cleaner lines, and are usually hidden or tucked away.
In contrast, American kitchens boast many fine details like big fridges and cookers, which make their design prominent.
Even kitchen flooring is different between these two continents. For instance, American kitchens use tiled floors, whereas Europeans prefer floors made from stones or marbles.
There is one place where these two continents share the same taste.
Both Americans and Europeans share a passion for wooden flooring in the rest of their home and granite worktops in their kitchen area.
Another area where these two continents think differently in terms of home designing is materials. For example, Americans favor single roof brick walls whereas Europeans like their roof in stone or wood. In most American homes, tile or wood flooring dominates the entire home except for their kitchen.
Due to the extreme weather conditions, American homes use lightweight materials like bricks, plaster, or wood for construction.
European thinking is completely different because they prefer homes that can stand the test of time and last for more than a hundred years. So, for this reason, Europeans prefer using heavy-duty materials like stone and wood to construct their dream home.
Unlike Americans, who changed and accepted the influences of people from around the world, For more than a hundred years, Europeans have been using the same material without mixing with other influences. As a result, their homes are stylish, unique, and visually appealing than most American homes.
4. Bedrooms and bathroom
Traditionally, Americans purchase or rent out large houses with many upgraded bedrooms so that each child has a separate room. They also prefer houses with spare rooms to use as guest rooms or multi-functional rooms.
There is a preference in the number of bathrooms. Typically, in a US home with four bedrooms, you’re likely to find three to four bathrooms.
On the other hand, Europeans prefer tiny houses and are happy with a house with the number of bedrooms they need. It’s uncommon in European countries to have four bathrooms with a four-bedroom apartment. The house is likely to have one or a maximum of two bathrooms for everyone to share.
5. Home positioning
When it comes to home positioning, Americans and Europeans are worlds apart. While most European homes have their front door opening directly onto streets, others may be far away from the road. Their home may or may not have a small front garden.
Americans’ homes are completely opposite in their positioning. They prefer positioning their home farther from the road with a driveway and large garden in front of their house.
Often, you will find the front entrance of American homes raised. This becomes an excellent place for children to play and adults to relax after a hectic day at work.
6. Comfort and minimalism
Americans are comfy creatures and prefer investing in lavish and visually appealing designs and decors. Most Europeans prefer a simple and minimalistic décor. While American homes boast tapestry elements and plush and thick upholstery in rich colors, Europeans feel content with a minimalistic aesthetic.
Interestingly, Europeans have a habit of matching their prints and fabric throughout their room.
Europeans prefer maintaining grand antique showpieces and traditional furniture to make their house look elegant. In contrast, Americans use rich colors to decorate their room and prefer placing modern furniture in their home.
In American homes, symmetry is the mother of all themes, they pair accessories and furniture pieces in a centered manner. As the furniture matches their interior décor, their house looks like a cohesive unit.
On the other hand, European culture advocates the use of ornate and heavy furniture. From using wood-carved furniture to tufted upholstery, Europeans like to keep everything in line with their tradition.
In many European homes, you’re likely to find chandeliers, vases, candleholders. This helps in adding a sense to their interior design without being too flashy.
8. Doors and windows
While American doors and windows serve the purpose of ‘open’ and ‘close,’ European windows are strategically designed to regulate airflow from exterior to interior and vice-versa.
In a European home, filtered air passes into your home through the sides while allowing the warm air to escape from the top.
9. Home extension
It is common practice in American and European homes to extend their property to build extra rooms, kitchens, or even patios. Americans increase their space by ensuring that additional space complements and reflects the style and design of their existing structure.
Europeans are happy by combining the traditional look of their existing architecture with some ultra-modern extension. However, they prefer matching colors for each room.
Traditionally, Europeans prefer floral and multicolored prints in drapery to connect them with their history and heritage. These prints add a feminine touch to their house, making it feel comfortable and homely. However, these light-colored patterns often get dirty and can be a nightmare to clean.
On the other hand, Americans prefer using bright colored drapery or one with symmetric or geometric patterns. This gives their home a modern look.
Difference today-and why they matter
Historical and cultural influences play a significant role in designing American and European homes. Americans focus on comfort and functionality in every design aspect,starting from furniture to the material they use.
Rather than focusing on intricate details and patterns of tiles or furniture they use, Americans prefer showing quality design through durability and comfort.
On the other hand, Europeans are still grounded in their roots and want their home interior design to reflect their rich heritage, culture, and tradition.
While both homes are distinct, each promotes a different sense of style, floor plan, and interior design. Both American and European homes have their own set of individuality, inimitability, and class.
So, when constructing a new home or renovating an existing one, use this guide to pick out the best from these two cultures and create a home that others envy.
Which interior design concepts do you prefer, American or European?
Please share your thoughts with us!