Bay Area Interior Design Newsletter: Principles of Design

SECRETS OF SUCCESSFUL ROOMS. Do you ever look at a room in a design magazine and immediately love it but don’t know why? A big part of my job is figuring out what my clients are drawn to. Beneath all the details lie the principles of good design. Read on as I reveal four of the key elements used to create successful interiors.

Proportion/Scale. As far as design rules, this one will get you the biggest bang for your buck. Paying attention to the scale of your room is vital. Most people don’t think about how high their ceilings are when they are looking for a new bookcase or armoire. Consider the following factors when purchasing furniture: Width, depth, and height. A feeling of balance will be created if the pieces relate well to each other and are in correct proportion to size of the room.

Balance. Balance can be achieved in many ways. It’s more traditional to use symmetrical balance, but it can be more fun to create balance using asymmetry. Grouping smaller pieces of artwork together to balance a larger piece is one trick. Pay attention to the furniture placement, as well as the location of splashes of color and pattern in a room.

Harmony. This is a little harder to define, but harmony is achieved when all the elements in a room work well together. Focus on repeating patterns, shapes, tones or textures throughout a room. According to the gestalt theory of visual psychology, “viewers are actually looking for some sort of organization, something to relate the various elements” within a space.

Emphasis. Creating a focal point in a space will attract the viewer’s eye and provide contrast and visual emphasis. Be aware of your current focal point. You may not be too pleased to find that 1970’s fireplace tile is attracting the most visual attention in your living room. Try to highlight the room’s best attributes or your favorite pieces.

NICHE NEWS: I’m proud to announce my status as a Certified Green Building Professional! This knowledge will help create healthier homes for you and our planet.

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