Monday, April 5, 2010

Elements of design

I have mentioned several times how important scale and proportion are to a room. With all interiors, the Elements of Design are successful when there is a unifying theme that runs through out the room. This blends everything together and creates Harmony. Of all the principles of design, scale and proportion create harmony and this is most important. Without this, the room lacks cohesiveness and sabotages any chance for flow.

Sarah Richardson
Harmony is easy to achieve if the scale is correct. The furniture should be in close relation to the rooms size, fabrics should be appropriate for the furniture frame and rooms use, and accessories should be in context to the rooms appropriate size  and various elements, such as furniture in the room. One of the most critical elements for achieving harmony is the color palette. Color is a constant influence in our everyday lives. And it is imperative that there be at least one or two common threads of color throughout a room. Just like any good outfit there needs to be common ground and there needs to be an element of organization. It is crucial that there be flow, and connection, so that it creates a beautiful movement around an interior space. Color should reflect your personality and of all things, it accomplishes harmony and flow. When these two things are right, the room feels good, and looks good with ease.
 Another design element to achieve is comfort, so the room is easy to live in. Comfort is calming, and softens a room so that harmony and balance can be achieved. Comfort brings a restful feeling and provides a welcome accent to your guests.
There is little doubt that color is emotional. Every color conveys a mood, thus creating atmosphere. Have you ever walked into a room and felt calm, or uplifted? Colors translate into feelings, and those feelings mixed with beautiful lighting, fabrics, and furnishings evokes atmosphere.
Texture is not often grouped with words like glamour, but it is essential to any well designed room. For example, if you choose to deck your entire room out in neutrals, it will fall flat on it's butt without texture playing a major role. Think about this when designing your next room. Think about a room with textured linen, draperies with stripes, marble veining in a table, and hardwood floors with nubby sisal rugs. This my friends is a room rich in design and texture

David Duncan Livingston
The key to success in reaching your desired design goals, is in the mix.(see photo below) The Elements of Design can be subtle or they can be bold. You can take a slightly varied approach with assorted textures, or introduce many different elements. Always combine things to keep them interesting. Remember the key Elements of Design are:
1) Scale
2) Harmony
3) Color
4) Comfort
5) Atmosphere
6) Texture
Kenneth Brown
This room above achieves all of the elements of design. The scale and proportion are perfect. The colors, brown and white create cohesiveness throughout the room allowing the eye to easily read the room. The slipcovered sofas and side chairs look inviting and comfortable and the linen drapes and lamp shades, the scratched leather ottoman, and the window box fabric on the side chairs gives us the depth and texture we need to create a beautiful flow and atmosphere. Just stunning!

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  1. Thank you for another informative post!

  2. Amanda,
    Those are all such great examples of how to get it right. Nice article. I adore the diningroom table with the settee and chairs not to mention the fab-u-lous table base. Oh did I mention the artwork too? I love this room.

    You were too early for the diningroom post. It's up now, stop over and have a peek.

  3. Absolutely, you definitely notice when scale and proportion are wrong. I've made the mistake in the past of buying furniture that is too large for the space. Hopefully, I've learnt! Great post..Rachaelxx

  4. Amanda, hope your Easter was good for you. Love the calm, cohesive pictures! Thanks!
    On another subject, can you tell me what program you use for your online design? I would like to get it to start mine. Thanks!


  5. Always sensible advice here. I know the Mrs. would love to redesign some of room, but with little ones, practical and unbreakable are the features that trump all other qualities.

  6. Thanks for the great design tips, these are all important things to consider when designing any room! PS. Love the room by Sarah Richardson!

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  8. Thanks for the great info. and the pretty pictures to illustrate. I always seem to like Sarah Richardson's stuff.

  9. Great post!! So many elements come into play when you decorate a room. It's really helpful to see these pictures of rooms that show how they all work together.

    Love Sarah's room -- she always uses the best fabrics :-)


  10. Amanda: Thanks so much for visiting my blog!
    Yours is just wonderful; How could I not have been here sooner?
    I'll subscribe and be back commenting very soon! thanks.

  11. Hello and thanks so much for visiting La Lamp Shade today!


    If the Lamp Shade Fits

  12. Excellent post Amanda, as usual! xo Maria

  13. I love the candle holder in the first pic, its so different looking and pretty!

  14. An excellent post. I love this comment "Colors translate into feelings, and those feelings mixed with beautiful lighting, fabrics, and furnishings evokes atmosphere" and relates perfectly to the point Maria Killiam was making on her blog today.

  15. Great post..and I am inlove with the ottoman in the last image..gorgeous!