When some people think of contemporary homes, they think of a stark white box with a white interior — perhaps like the Rachofsky Residence by Richard Meier in Preston Hollow – essentially an art-museum-house-hybrid.

Enrique Montenegro, a principal at SHM Architects, says contemporary is really anything that’s not traditional in architecture, but it’s not necessarily a “classic white box.”

“Contemporary doesn’t have to be cold,” he says.

CandysDirt.com sat down with Enrique Montenegro of Dallas-based SHM Architects to discuss how to design a contemporary home that feels warm and comfortable.

CandysDirt: Let’s start with the criticisms. What are the stereotypes people have of contemporary-style homes?

Enrique Montenegro: Everybody’s got a different idea of what contemporary means. Clean lines is a term that people use a lot when they’re referring to contemporary homes, where everything’s super straight, with minimal details, and very crisp.

But we’ve all been in these kinds of spaces where you feel like you can’t put your feet up. They are rooms full of furniture that make you feel like you’ve got to sit straight up. The way the space is furnished and how the walls are finished can make it feel very cold and too formal. (more…)