Interior Design 101: Basic Things You Should Know About Interior Design

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You don’t need to be a pro to decorate your home beautifully.

You don’t need to have a formal interior design education to transform any space beautifully. However, you will need to know the basics of interior design. From principles and guidelines to practical tips, you’ll need to know them all.

Luckily, it’s easy to get started with interior design. If you want to try your hand at remodeling your home, here’s what you need to know.

What Is Interior Design?

Interior design is the process of manipulating interior space. Interior design combines aspects of environmental psychology, architecture, and product design. It is both an art and a science.

Interior designers are the professionals in the interior design field. They handle everything from conceptualization to implementation. In some areas, interior designers need licenses to practice professionally.

What Are the Principles of Interior Design?

1. Balance

Balance creates a feeling of equilibrium between. When you consider balance, you assign weights to each object. Then, you make sure to keep these weights in mind when designing your space. Note that balance isn’t created only through shape, but also through pattern, color, and texture.

There are three distinct types of balance.

  • Symmetrical Balance. Symmetrical balance splits spaces into two identical sides. For example, you’d put two chairs on the left side of a table and two sides on the right. This kind of balance is easy to put in place since all you need to do is make sure both sides are identical. If you overuse symmetrical balance, however, things tend to get boring and monotonous.
  • Asymmetrical Balance. With asymmetrical balance, you balance the visual weights of colors, lines, forms, and textures without exact duplication. It isn’t as straightforward as symmetrical balance, but it does create more interest. For example, you can asymmetrically balance out a large sofa by placing two chairs opposite it.
  • Radial Balance. With radial balance, you assign an item to be a focal point and position other objects according to your focal point. For example, you could have a round dining table as the focal point. Then, arrange several chairs surrounding the table.

2. Harmony

Harmony uses all elements to create a unified message. It creates a sense of calm. For instance, you can create harmony by using only one color. Despite using one color, your objects may vary greatly in shape, texture, and size.

3. Emphasis

If you give everything in a room equal importance, the scene will look either scattered or boring. Therefore, you need an anchor to give emphasis to. This can be something like a fireplace or a large window with a fantastic view. You can give more emphasis to a certain point by arranging furniture around it.

4. Proportion & Scale

Proportion refers to how big one thing is compared to another thing. Scale refers to how big something is compared to the space that it’s in. You’ll need to make sure that everything is proportionate and scaled properly. A long dining table in a tiny room is not scaled properly.

5. Rhythm

Rhythm exists outside of music. In fact, you can experience rhythm visually. In interior design, rhythm is all about making patterns of contrast and repetition to create visual interest. You can do this by using the same shape or color at different intervals.

The goal is to get an observer’s eye to move across the room. You lead the viewer’s gaze using visual rhythm.

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