I find that when I'm to talking about Interior Design, i usually use what I like to refer to as 'designer jargon'. Which are essentially regular words which have taken on a different meaning in the world of design. These definitions are known to designers only, and it can confuse clients. Clients who don't have an understanding of these words struggle to understand the designer and the design. So therefore I have decided to put together a series of posts, that I'm calling 'Jargon Busters', to help people exactly what Interior Designers are talking about.
First up we have the Principles of Design. The big players. These 6 principles is what makes professional Interior Designers standout amongst the amateurs. These 6 principles gives the designer the ability to combine all the design elements together seamlessly. Design elements refers to the style, colours, textures, materials, furniture and accessories.
This is how an item of furniture or accessory relates to the size of the room. The smaller the room, the smaller scaled furniture. The larger the room, the larger scaled furniture. It is as simple as that. You can play around with different scales, but it takes a trained eye to hit the mark with this.
This is how an item of furniture or accessory relates in size to another item of furniture or accessory. Small with small, big with big. Again seasoned Interior Designers will play around with proportion but but the general rule is to keep things similar sized.
This relates to the equilibrium of objects and elements in a room. Each element and item should play off one another in order to achieve balance. This is tricky one, even designers sometimes struggle to find the right balance. There are 3 types of balance:
Symmetrical - where all items and elements are mirrored equally on both sides of the room.
Asymmetrical - where the items are of the same visual weight, but different in size, shape, texture and colour. For example, two table lamps placed on either side of the bed which are two different designs.
Radial - where all the items are arranged around one central focal point.
This refers to walls, floors, ceilings and furniture. All these elements together create what is known as lines. There are 4 different types of lines that you can achieve in an Interior:
Horizontal - widens and shortens the room, ideal in creating intimate informal spaces.
Vertical - narrows and lengthens the room, ideal in creating traditional and grand spaces.
Curved - used to soften the harshness of square and rectangular shapes, ideal for children's spaces and bathrooms
Diagonal - creates the movement of energy in a room, this particular line is immensely difficult to achieve and best left in the hands of a professional.
This relates to how design elements contrast and compliment each other. It's achieved by repetition of colour, materials, pattern and shape.
This relates to how all the design elements relate with one another. It's how they work in terms of scale and proportion, how the lines are balanced, and how rhythmic the interior is.