Finding your Favourite Flavour
Tell me this, are you like me, do you find it hard to define your interior style? If someone were to ask me on the spot I would really struggle. Not because I don’t know what I like but because your interpretation of a word or phrase may be different to mine. “Transitional” may cover it, “eclectic” even might work, they seem “catch all” enough, vague enough to pass myself with an answer.
Let me chat to you about what I don’t like and that might help you understand what I do like; how perfectly, perversely Irish of me to arrive at my destination in this roundabout way. So when I say “Contemporary” interior design I assume you think like me, clean lines, maybe some glass, metal, marble even, shiny and generally cold to touch materials used. There would probably be a quite contrasting, stark colour palette involved if not incredibly minimalistic with only monochromatic shades on offer. That is how I see a space that is described as contemporary. Hands up, I have to admit “clean lines” contemporary interior design is not my absolute “go-to” choice, there of lots of it I admire but it isn’t generally my favourite in a room full of things.
Logic would follow that to dive into the opposite of that would be to think of traditional interior design. But this is where it gets tricky for me? Because if you wanted an either/or answer; do you prefer contemporary or traditional styles of interior design? I would struggle to say traditional in case that the traditional you mean when you say traditional is not the traditional that I like. Traditional can so easily and so often mean the overly embellished ornate details, lots of patterns, old fashioned rich colours, lots of damask, tassels, fringing, velvets and heavy fabrics. That may be your automatic mental picture of a space designed in traditional and that is not my thing. So what do I like about more traditional interior design? I do like warmth, I like the use of textures and fabrics, I like the odd curve and squishiness to my furniture. I found Décor Aid’s overview of traditional style super helpful in shaping some of my understanding on this.
So I think to define your style you must need to go a little more specific in your language I am not sure that broad brush works when it comes to interior design sweeping statements. When I think of traditional elements of a room, ie not contemporary or modern ones, they are often period features that I love most. I love the high ceilings, some panelling, the scale of the space, an ornate antique fireplace, the distinguished colour palette used in period properties. These are the elements I love. The more I read the style I veer to is probably modern classical. I like fresh but with depth. I like detail and display of craftsmanship without the fuddy duddy elements. I like rich and robust without trying to be fancy pants exclusive. I like real, I like fun, I like colour and most of all I think authenticity.
Have a read of some of these helpful articles and see if it helps you redefine your focus and help you define what makes your heart sing when it comes to interiors. Ironically it is rarely just black and white….