Table of Contents
Principles of Interior Design
One should know the Interior design principles while applying design elements in the project. They are the basic foundation of design and should be kept in mind during the entire process. Whether you voluntarily put in these principles or not, all good interior designs adhere to these principles.
Balance is applied by all designers, whether or not they are interior designers. It majorly refers to the visual weight and symmetry of your designs. Some designers are of the belief that elements disintegrate in the absence of balance. In terms of interior design, it means creating a balance between all the elements you put into your designs. Creating symmetry with similar or matching objects, or keeping a particular object as a focus, might help restore balance in the space.
For a more relaxed and casual feel, a combination of tall and short, big and small, or light and dark elements of interior design can do the trick. The principle of balance is applied by all designers, whether they are interior designers or not. Balance majorly refers to the visual weight and symmetry of your designs. Some designers are of the belief that the rest of the elements disintegrate if balance isn’t created in the designs. In terms of interior design, it means balancing all the elements you put into your designs.
Making sure that each space is not disparate when you travel from one to another is the key component of unity. Unity is a necessary element in interior design for creating visual connectivity. Using similar elements helps in creating unity. Having a set of colors and following that theme creates a better sense of unity instead of introducing different colors into each room.
The principle of contrast makes a space interesting. It can be implemented in space, colors, patterns, forms, or even the lighting in interior design. To create a contrast, pieces of furniture or any other aspect of design can have opposite colors or completely different patterns or prints. Two completely different shapes, like a rectangle or a square combined with another circular object, can also help in creating contrast. Mixing and matching diverse materials or amalgamating different types of textures are ways to inculcate contrast in interior design. Inculcating contrast in interior design helps in grabbing the viewer’s attention to both the pieces equally.
Just like in music, rhythm is the thread that holds the entire design together in interior design as well. A majority of people believe that rhythm is the secret sauce for a great design. Rhythm helps people judge the aesthetic value of a particular space. A design with rhythm refers to how the viewer’s eyes move around the space and the way they perceive it.
Rhythm helps the continuous introduction of various elements that create a visual movement from one setting in the room to another. This can be achieved by introducing gradation of different colors, transitioning from one focal point to another, or adding elements to help visual navigation. Repeating a pattern, texture, lighting pattern, shapes, or any other architectural features helps achieve rhythm.
Scale and proportion
Scale and proportion are one of the most important factors to consider in interior design. The scale signifies one entity’s size regarding another one. For example, the size of furniture pieces regarding the floor-to-floor height, or the height of a person regarding the furniture pieces. The connection between these two features is known as proportion.
‘Emphasis’ in interior design grabs the viewer’s attention. An art piece, furniture, or any other design element can be placed in such a way that it becomes the focal element of a person as soon as they walk into the room. All the other elements can be placed around it to complement the focus element. The focus element can be anything ranging from color, texture, patterns, or form. This element is the dominant character in the entire design.
Interior Design Elements
Interior design is entirely dependent on space, which is why space is the most important out of all the elements of interior design. There are two types of space, 2D space and 3D space. 2D space is thought about while introducing rugs, carpets. 3D space is thought about while introducing elements taking up height as the third dimension, such as shelves. Space filled with furniture or other décor pieces is known as positive space. Space that is unused or empty in the room is known as negative space.
Balancing the percentage of positive and negative spaces is very essential. Disproportion regarding this might lead to a too crowded or too scarce space. The representation of space depends on the user. Elements of interior design can be placed in such a way that it creates visual illusions of a bigger or smaller space or higher or lower ceilings. For example, vertical stripes added to a wall, or reducing the height of all furniture pieces might make the overall height look bigger. Cutting down certain walls, or coloring them in lighter shades according to the user’s choice can help the space look bigger.
Lines in interior design help people perceive space. Designers can experiment with this area for people to recognize the space in the manner that they wish to. Horizontal lines make the space look simple and down-to-earth. They give a warm, sheltered, and stable feel to the space. Vertical lines draw people’s attention upwards. Angular, circular, or zigzag lines represent energy, stimulation, and movement. They encourage the viewer to move their gaze around. Overuse of any one type of line might make the room look monotonous.
Form or shape
Assembling horizontal, vertical, and/or dynamic lines like curves, angular, or zigzag lines, gives birth to open or closed shapes called forms. These forms are used to represent a specific style depending on the user’s needs and interior design choices. There are two types of forms, organic forms (natural, curvy), and geometric forms (angular, sharp, man-made by lines and geometric shapes with lines and edges)
Repetition of interior design elements as shapes, lines, and forms, gives rise to specific patterns. Patterns can be represented in the use of light, wall colors, wallpapers, use of fabrics, or any other design aspects. Patterns can be a focal point while designing a room. Patterns help in highlighting certain elements of the room, like staircases, ceilings, or even walls. Options for inculcating patterns into interior design have never-ending array options, from grains of wood uses, to the frames of pictures or paintings, blinds, pillow covers, fabrics used, etc.
Different types of light represent different moods. Lighting sets the entire mood of a particular room. This can make or mar other elements of interior design. Natural lighting and artificial lighting are two different types of lighting. In case customization is possible, where windows can be placed in such a way that it emphasizes elements according to the user’s needs. In the absence of customization, artificial lighting can be used. It can be used to either set the mood for the entire room, or for a specific purpose like desk or reading lights, or a part of art pieces for display.
The purpose of paint in interior design goes beyond just introducing color. It is also related to style, energy, and functionality. Just like lighting, color also represents different moods. Along with moods, color also sets the tone and the energy in the room. It affects human psychology and behavior. It has the capacity to create positive as well as negative feelings.
When it comes to painting shades in interior design, there is no one size fits all formula. Lighter shades make the room look larger, while darker shades have a tendency of the opposite. Knowing about color psychology in interior design plays a major role in deciding the color palette. Lavender is known for stress relief. Red encourages stimulation and raises energy levels. Yellow encourages optimistic feelings. The color blue is said to make the place feel calm and peaceful.
Elements of texture to consider in interior design are look and feel. Textures give depth to the room. Textures can be incorporated into rugs, wall panels or papers, furniture surfaces, curtains, and other fabrics introduced in the room. This is an element that is usually ignored by people, but it has the capacity to add more dimension to the room.
Interior Design in Home
There are certain design tips you can follow to make your bedroom calming, comfortable, and breathable. When picking a chandelier, make sure that it is in synergy with the overall interior design. Make sure the size of the rug is proportionate enough for you to step on it when you get down from your bed. Enhance the walls with artwork. Make sure that you have an ample amount of storage to avoid a mess in your bedroom. The furniture sizes should not be too big or too small for the bedroom. The use of multiple light sources will play well in bedroom design.
The kitchen layout matters the most out of all the other rooms in home interior design. A professional designer’s priority, while kitchen design is the layout of the kitchen. Maximum circulation space should be the first thing to consider in the layout. The most important elements are the stove, refrigerator, and sink. Enough space should be provided for more than one person to work alongside each other in the kitchen. To achieve this, designers create the ‘The Kitchen Work Triangle’. The area for food preparation, the area for cooking, and the area for dining and circulation should not interfere with each other.
When it comes to interior design for homes, the living room is undoubtedly the most important room. Living room design gives away the first impression of your house. Make sure you select the right type and size of furniture that caters to your own needs. You can have a focal point in the room and introduce elements to complement it. Pick a color palette according to your design choice and the mood and energy you want your living room to reflect. Play with lighting and introduce a variety of lights meant for specific tasks, or in specific spaces.
Even though the washroom is usually the smallest room for interior design, choosing design aspects from floor to ceiling to fixtures can be pretty overwhelming. For a bold and colorful design, make an accent wall in the washroom. Wallpapers are back in trend with a variety of colors and designs. Unless you are actually using the bathtub, removing it would be a great space saver. Allow the flow of natural light. Place mirrors and glass in such a way that light bounces off of them. In case of the absence of a window, introduce artificial light that mimics natural light.
Interior Design in Office
Office cabin Design
Considering the increase in people’s health consciousness, a wellness office, just like a wellness home, will be appreciated by people. Inculcating more nature inside the office will have positive effects on the physical and the mental health of the person. Other elements like larger windows or sheer curtains that allow the flow of sunlight into the house give a better chance of promoting a healthy work environment. Inculcating minimalism with the help of geometric shapes and rigid lines with a mixture of colors, give an elegant, simple, and clean look to office cabin interior design.
Conference Hall Design
Whether you want the conference hall interior design to be giving out a proper corporate feel or a laid back and creative feel is a matter of design choice provided they do not compromise the functionality. The space should encourage interaction and communication. It should help people connect and collaborate with each other.
It should also meet the physical needs of the people using it. Consideration should be given to the technology and equipment that will be used. Make sure the acoustics in the room are appropriate. Adequate amount of space for people to fit should be a priority while designing the layout. The furnishing should be done in such a way that there is no scope for overcrowding the space. The color palette can be determined by the type of office.
Co-working spaces Design
The style in office interior design represents the culture the company adopts. Bright colors with an earthy feel and natural look give out a more play full feel to the space. Since more and more people are getting used to working from home, providing spaces that give a similar environment in the office might help people’s productivity. Colors that promote mental stimulation might help as well. Spaces that are designed in a way to promote interaction with people help in building better relationships in the office.
Pantry/ Cafeteria Design
Make sure that the pantry is designed in such a way that even the food item at the back of the shelf is always accessible. Along with aesthetics, it is important that the storage system of the pantry should be organized and clutter-free with an ample amount of space for circulation.
Interior Design Styles
Transitional interior design results from a blend of contemporary and classical styles. It merges together with the elements of traditional and contemporary design. It gives off a modern, elegant, and cozy look. The features include clean lines, bold colors, rich materials, bold decorations, and a variety of furniture pieces. It usually creates a flow from one space to another. It gives a certain character to the space depending on the user’s choice. How bold or subtle the room is a matter of choice.
The fundamental rule of maximalist interior design is “go busy or go big”. The maximalist design uses bold colors, layering, bold styling elements, and patterns. Finishes like wood and marble are used. The maximalist design avoids having a naked spot in the room. Maximalist designs go big in terms of wallpapers, accessories, furniture pieces, paintings, carpets, art pieces, wall hangings, rugs, artifacts, showpieces, etc. A variety of colors, patterns, and textures are mixed, matched together to create an interesting look. Layering is the key to creating a maximalist look.
Bohemian interior design is also known as ‘boho-chic’. This style comprises a variety of bright colors and vintage styles. Usually, the walls and ceilings are plain, and each and every component in the room is treated with a different design element. The furniture pieces, accessories, and a variety of fabrics. Embroidered sofa or curtains, cane wall hangings and other wooden decorations, mirrors, indoor plants, textured pillows, and a variety of textured carpets or rugs, etc. are some of the elements of bohemian interior design.
Memphis design dates back to 1981 in Milan, Italy. Characteristics of Memphis’ interior design include dynamic neons combined with flat, pastel shades, contrasting palettes, black and white stripes, abstract squiggles, bold and repetitive graphic patterns, and simple geometric shapes. This style is a blend of 1950s kitsch, art déco, and Pop Art.
Scandinavian interior design is derived from the climatic conditions of mid-century Europe. Since extreme cold was a common trait in that area, the housing typology comprises small houses that feel comfortable, airy, and follow a natural theme. Each element reflects sunlight. This style gives off a cozy feel that is simple, clean, elegant, and minimalistic.
The common features of Scandinavian interior design include the use of light colors, wood, stone, straight lines, white walls, subtle aesthetics, plain layouts promoting functionality, basic lines and shapes, modern furniture, clutter-free spaces, use of candles, plants, minimalistic fixtures, neutral color schemes, and use of natural fabrics like cotton, wool, and linen in order to imitate nature.
The fundamental rule of minimalist interior design is “less is more”. This makes a design look simple, minimalistic, uncluttered, clean, plain, monochromatic, unfussy, and unpretentious. In this style, the color acts as the accent. Aspects of décor like furniture pieces, paintings, art pieces, wall hangings, artifacts, showpieces, etc. follow a simple color scheme and sleek, clean patterns with minimum ornamentation, giving it a light, airy, weightless, soft, and subtle feel.
The key features of industrial interior design are exposed ceiling pipes and mechanical components. These elements create a contrast with the white spaces, producing an interesting rustic style. The walls are colored or exposed to concrete, bricks, or wood. Polished concrete flooring is usually preferred for industrial style. Wood or stone adds contrast. Defects, spots, stains, scratches, or any other imperfections are not a problem in this style because they usually add character to the space.
Shabby chic interior design focuses on furniture pieces that look old, dull, scraped, and a little deteriorated. It gives off a very rustic feel. It comprises vintage elements but also has a modern look. To get this look, furniture pieces are sanded or wiped after painting or the surface layer is removed. This can be done around the edges to expose the layer underneath. A variety of textures and patterns can be combined with distressed metal or wood to get this style. How bold or subtle the color palette is a matter of choice.
Mid Century Modern
Mid Century Modern interior design belongs to the mid-1930s to mid-1960s. The representation of this style is done by the use of shapes, textures, and patterns. Characteristics of this style are straight lines, gentle organic curves, a blend of different materials and shapes, sometimes contrasting ones. This style comprises minimum embellishment, simple decoration, with organic, curvaceous, and sleek forms, giving a minimalistic, classic, simple, uncluttered, and unpretentious look with exceptional quality. The materials used are wood, metal, glass, vinyl, and plywood. This style can be done in a variety of colors, from neutral palettes to metallic colors and black and white.
The rustic interior design follows a natural theme that is the bold, simple, rough, vintage, and basic design. Natural wood can be used for most elements in this style. Elements of design in this style usually aren’t glossy or lustrous, giving it an unpolished look. Other components like sofa, blankets, pillows, floors, ceilings, curtains, rugs, carpets, etc. all imitate nature.
The type of traditional interior design depends on region. That being said, there are certain characteristics that are common between them. Most of the traditional designs have the usage of wood. Darker wood gives a more rustic feel to the space. In luxury houses, marble is used for flooring. A variety of carpets and rugs are used. The use of moldings gives a sophisticated look. It comprises warm color palettes, mirrors, paintings, wall hangings, coffered ceilings, heavy curtains, ornamental pieces, use of iron or brass, chandeliers, candles, etc. This gives off a feeling of luxury, richness, and vibrancy.