Interiors are made up of both architectural and design elements, which converge to give a space its style and ambiance. Style is based on previous designs, and historic periods, while ambiance is based on the energy and feel of the space. By understanding the basic underlying components that make up the appearance of your home, you can gain greater control over how it looks and feels.
Color is probably the most recognizable element in interior decorating. It is the spice of life, noticeable, vivid, and brilliant, it fills the world with its joyous expressions and contentious contrasting. It also heavily affects the psychology of a space, with various tones causing subconscious reactions in people.
In general, reds, oranges, and yellow colors are going to add energy to a space, while calmer greens, blues, and earth tones will make the space more relaxing and comfortable. These can be contrasted with one another to create serene havens that have just a touch of spicy interest.
Lighting is another important and very basic element of home decorating. Illumination takes everything that exists within a space, and casts it in either a bright or shaded light. Its glow can highlight certain features, while its absence can cast negative features into the dark.
Most people don’t pay much attention to the decorative functions of illumination, worrying only about whether the home is bright enough to function in. Part of the problem is that light is an almost ineffable substance, you can’t touch it, you can’t really direct it, and so most people just ignore it.
One way to take control of the lighting in your home is to sue layers of light throughout a room. Just because a space has a great overhead fixture, doesn’t mean you can’t compliment that with a series of table and free standing floor lamps. Add another layer with track lighting, and then tie everything into dimmer switches, to really become the master of your homes illumination.
Texture is another basic decorating component that most people completely overlook. The ambiance of an interior is made up of more than just how it looks, it is also important to understand how a space makes people feel. That can be a reference both to emotion, and to tactile sensation.
If a space has soft fuzzy carpeting, and lots of pillows, it is going to feel comfortable and relaxed, however if it is all stark concrete, with granite countertops, and stainless steal accessories, you will feel colder, more remote, and more professional.
Style itself is a component of the decorative nature of a space. Many decorative items are created according to trends in design that have come and gone throughout human history. As time goes on people become bored with old styles, and so they invent new ones; thus the formal and intricately detailed chair from the Victorian Age is going to be different then the groovy been bag from the sixties.
By understanding and recognizing these basic elements of decorating, you can gain greater insight into how the feeling of a space is evoked. In this way, you can take command, using various techniques to control the ambiance and the psychology of your home.