As an artistic trend, minimalism first appeared in the Western world in the 1960s and 1970s as a reaction to abstract expressionism. It relies on repetition and pared-down design elements, and generally gives off an air of understated elegance. To that end, you can see why minimalism has been an attractive style as far as interior design goes. Most people want their homes to be simple but welcoming, elegant yet not overbearing, which helps to explain why minimalist principles have become so popular in recent years. If you’re thinking about renovating or purchasing a home in this style, here are five main ways that minimalism can directly contribute to interior design:
The literal building blocks of every home, walls are essential in giving your house or apartment its overall look and feel. Minimalism abhors clutter more than everything, so shy away from things like gaudy wallpapers and shiny surfaces. Instead opt for flat, smooth walls covered in matt emulsion for a more neutral look. When it comes to decoration, stick to a few large pieces of artwork and mirrors instead of several smaller items. If you feel the need for a bit more oomph, you can choose to have an accent wall that can showcase a different yet complementary color.
Speaking of colors, it’s no surprise that minimalism generally prefers muted tones like white or cream instead of more garish shades. Aside from eliminating tonal clashes, this also makes for a more relaxing environment. That being said, the occasional splash of color in smaller areas such as alcoves can be a welcome exclamation point for your home. Also, don’t forget that you also have the option of using textured timbers to induce warmth as well. These design elements can offset any potential drabness due to color limitations by imbuing your home with a more rustic, lived-in feel.
No house or apartment would be complete without some quality furniture to fill all that empty space. That being said, having too many furnishings can clutter your home needlessly, so think well before you decide which pieces to invest in. As far as placement goes, keep in mind that open space is at a premium, so always try to place your furniture in such a way that it still allows for free movement around the house. Go for quality and functionality instead of quantity and bombast, and remember to invest in things with ample storage facilities so you can save on space later on.
Having well lit rooms is a staple of minimalist design, with natural light generally being regarded as a much more desirable option than its artificial alternative. To that end, large windows without blinds are always a good idea, but be aware of the natural patterns of the sun, lest you end up having to deal with constant streams of light in your eyes. As far as artificial light is concerned, things like floor lamps, led strip lights and other concealed sources are a great way to light up a room while also giving it a nice visual boost.
- Building materials
One of the most core aspects of the design process lies in identifying which building materials you prefer to use in your home. As a general rule of thumb, minimalism entails the use of simple materials. Things like wood and glass are often found in most minimalist homes, in everything from furniture to decorations, as the desire for understated elegance extends to all aspects of interior design. For instance, a popular trend in recent years has revolved around using exposed brick as a distinctive design feature that’s both neat and elegant. You can also choose to paint over the exposed bricks if you prefer a slightly different aesthetic.
As you can see, there are a number of design areas that can be influenced by minimalist principles, which can definitely alter the look of a home quite drastically if properly applied. Always make sure you take plenty of time to think about any big changes before implementing them and try to invest in some kind of interior design software that will allow you to map out your home beforehand. Finally, don’t hesitate to enlist the services of a professional interior decorator if you can afford it.