What is Adamesque?

A style related to the designs of the Adam Brothers, characterized by neoclassical elements.


The term 'Adamesque' refers to a style borne out of the work of the Adam Brothers, mainly Robert and James Adam, who were prominent Scottish architects and furniture designers in the 18th century. This style is best known for its embodiment of neoclassical design principles, incorporating a fine balance of classical motifs, elegant proportions, and light, airy spaces that epitomize harmony and grace. The Adamesque style is distinguished by its use of classical elements such as columns, pilasters, and friezes, combined with playful decorative motifs including urns, swags, and medallions. The style often features delicate color schemes, with an emphasis on pastel shades and light hues, contributing to its overall sense of refinement and sophistication.

In interior design, the Adamesque style is applied to create spaces that are both beautiful and functional, with a strong emphasis on symmetry and alignment. Furniture in the Adamesque style is characterized by its elegance and lightness, often featuring straight lines, contrasting with the curved forms that were typical of earlier styles. Decorative arts and accessories play a significant role in Adamesque interiors, with items such as vases, mirrors, and textiles contributing to the overall aesthetic. This style is considered timeless, offering inspiration for contemporary design projects that seek to blend classical elegance with modern sensibilities.


The Adamesque style can be seen in various architectural works and interior spaces, particularly in historic buildings and estates. It is often adopted in the design of public buildings, such as galleries and museums, as well as in private residences seeking a classic and elegant aesthetic. In furniture design, pieces that exemplify the Adamesque style include elegant bookcases, side tables, and chairs with neoclassical detailing. The Adamesque approach to decoration also influences the choice of fabrics, wallpapers, and other interior finishes, favoring patterns and textures that reflect the lightness and elegance of the style.


  • Who were the Adam Brothers?

    The Adam Brothers, Robert and James Adam, were Scottish architects and furniture designers in the 18th century, renowned for their development of the Adamesque style.

  • What are the key features of the Adamesque style?

    Key features of the Adamesque style include classical motifs, elegant proportions, light and airy spaces, decorative motifs like urns and swags, and a focus on symmetry and alignment.

  • How can the Adamesque style be incorporated into modern design?

    The Adamesque style can be incorporated into modern design by blending its classical elements and elegant proportions with contemporary materials and sensibilities, maintaining a focus on symmetry, refined color schemes, and decorative detailing.

Practical Application

When incorporating the Adamesque style into an interior design project, focus on creating a harmonious balance between classical motifs and contemporary functionality. Choose furniture and decorative items that reflect the elegance and lightness of the style, and consider incorporating classical architectural features, such as columns or friezes, in a measured way. Select color palettes that are subdued and refined, favoring pastels and light hues to enhance the airy and sophisticated feel of the space. The Adamesque style’s emphasis on symmetry and alignment should guide the layout and organization of rooms, creating spaces that are both visually appealing and comfortably livable.