This blog touches on many tips, recommendations, and guidelines for those interested in stepping up the interior design of their home. From time to time we’ll discuss a few rules that have been molded by the industry over the decades, yet you’ll notice that we never state that you must follow any one of them explicitly. While there certainly is a “science” behind interior design there is also a large artistic and creative component, both of which are very subjective. In the end, the work should suit the personalities of those living in the space. Only then can we claim a successful project. So, while we do need tried and true practices in place for both budding academics entering the field and for many formal projects, there are traditional rules that can be broken when considering the interior design of your home. Read further to find out where you can break-free from the handcuffs and add some fun to your interior design agenda.
Five Interior Design Rules for the Home that are Made to be Broken
1. Only Small Furnishings & Accents for Small Spaces
A few months ago we penned an article on interior design tips for small spaces. You’ll note that we did not abide by the passé principle of furnishing (and decorating) with smaller items so as to create the perception of space. In fact, such a concept often leads to the opposite, with homeowners adding a few too many smalls to a room, creating clutter. Even if you restrain yourself, having only small furnishings in a small room can create an odd miniature-esque environment. The rule-breaker here, is to do the opposite. Select one or two large pieces that tie a small room together and create a feeling of openness and comfort.
2. Art Must Match the Color Scheme of the Room
There are some projects where we sense that the client will want art (paintings, photos, accents) brought into a project to match to the tee the tonality of each room. If you are more creative or eclectic then such a color guideline could be thrown out of the window. Art serves as the final piece of the decorative puzzle, making a statement about you and the purpose of the space. While we take color and design concepts very seriously, we know that there can be no cookie-cutter rule when it comes to art and the interior decor of any given room. Choose pieces that feel right for you from the moment you hang them on the wall or place them on a table, mantle, or stand.
3. Ceilings Should Remain Untouched
This old school thought has been in place for quite some time partly because of the work required to repaint the ceiling. Blame it on gravity! However, just because a project requires more effort does not mean that it is not worth doing. In fact, little can have such a positive impact on the color palette of a room than a custom painted ceiling. Break the egg-white tradition and consider your ceilings in the same way that you do the walls of each room in your home and paint them accordingly.
4. Keep a Strong Sense of Symmetry
There are some obsessed with symmetry when designing a room. A sense of balance is nice, but when done in excess a room can feel more like the lobby of an office building. Just because you have a large vase on one side of your bay window doesn’t mean that you have to match it on the other side. Break the rule of symmetry by avoiding the use of matching pairs when adding furnishings and accents to a room. Even bookends on your library shelf can contradict one another (when selected with care, of course).
5. Period Design Should Be Consistent from Room to Room
Many homeowners feel a special attachment to the design style of a certain era. That being said, they do not necessarily want this to copy over from room to room within the home, yet feel an obligation to do so for the sake of consistency and synchronicity. This common misnomer in interior design can turn your home into a singular homage instead of a living space. Toss aside this misleading law and choose which rooms that you want to tastefully express your appreciation for a period, be it Victorian or Post-Modern. You can then design the remaining rooms based upon other aesthetic and functional preferences. For example, it is not uncommon to see a living room designed with modern flare, yet find the den in the very same home decorated in a far more traditional manner to suit its use as a personal library or professional office space.
While we certainly encourage you to break away from the traditional norm when deciding upon the interior design of your home, you will still want to proceed with a well thought-out plan in place. We would love to assist you (Greater Vancouver residents) prefer to let go of your design inhibitions by creating spaces you’ll love to come home to. Contact us anytime by calling (604) 986-2080 or by completing the form found here.