Interior design terms – are they really a thing?
Ever heard a professional interior designer use words such as layered, herringbone or patina and wondered what on earth they were talking about? You’re not alone, the interior design world has their own terminology and concepts that aren’t widely known outside of the industry.
Whether you prefer to DIY or would rather use a professional you could benefit from knowing some of the insider design terms and principles. They can give you an insight on how to create a cohesive environment and how to finish up with your desired outcome.
Below We Have Listed Some Of The Common Words That Will Help Bridge The Gap Between You And The Professional.
A space that utilises inherent, environmental conditions. The definition of the surrounding area or environment.
A natural view or object that draws your eye or generates interest when first entering a room or space. For example, a big window with a view, a fireplace with a mantle, a feature wall or even a piece of artwork.
Layering adds interest and depth to a space by building a room from the ground up. This is achieved by taking each of the individual elements in a room and pulling them together to create a cohesive look.
Dark layers and mixed deep textures are used. It’s visually opposite to the light and airy style.
Bespoke refers to something that is custom made for you, as per your taste and preferences. It could be a service or a piece of furniture.
Antique or Vintage
One in the same, right? …wrong!
Antique is anything over 100 years old, and vintage can be between 20 and 100 years old and usually reflects a particular period.
A decorative style from the 1940s characterised by clean lines. Not the same as Modern.
A colour scheme built around one single hue and its varying tones, tints and shades.
What does curated mean?
A design that is a thought-out and well put together collection of furnishings or accessories that can reflect a personal style or historical meaning. It’s combining various elements belonging to different sources together but giving the appearance that they belong together.
Originally used to define the way metal ages, but now this term is also used to characterise the desirable weathering conditions of antiques and vintage pieces.
There are also paint effects on the market that can create this look.
Hope These Explanations Of Interior Design Terms Are Giving You A Helping Hand So Far? Here Are A Few More…
A paired down minimalist style without clutter or frills. Also, minimal colour with the emphasis placed on simple lines and shapes.
A bolster cushion is long and cylindrical and adds contrasting shape and size when grouped with the more commonly used square cushions.
A heavy textile containing nubby, looped yarn (often in two different shades) that creates texture.
A scaled drawing showing a view from above. Also, it outlines relationships between rooms and traffic patterns. Dimensions are usually drawn to specify room sizes, windows, doors and wall lengths.
A style of design which takes its name from an influential German art school that operated from 1919 to 1933. Bauhaus style is defined by simplistic modernism and the concept of “form following function.”
Painters Use This Term…..
To brush an unloaded paintbrush across a wet painted surface to create a smooth as possible finish.
A gallery wall is a cohesive grouping of artwork, photos, memento’s and/or collections. They can be formal with symmetry or informal with an eclectic blend in random order.
A natural fibre plant that is extremely durable and is used to make flooring. It comes from the stem of white jute plants. It’s a popular and affordable flooring option, especially for high traffic areas.
A thin material such as plastic or wood that is glued to the exterior of another surface, such as a cabinet or benchtop.
What’s An Elevation?
An elevation is a two-dimensional drawing of a wall (or series of walls) with varying degrees of detail.
Essentially, a facade is the front face of a house or building. An exterior that looks out onto a street or open space.
A pattern made up of rows of parallel lines which in any two adjacent rows slope in opposite directions. This popular pattern can be used for things such as floor and wall tiles, timber flooring, upholstery and any fabric accessories. The herringbone pattern can be subtle or striking depending on its size.
A general term given to small items of furniture such as end tables or side tables, that are only occasionally used.
A hue is another word for colour.
What Is Molding?
Ornamental strips of material (wood, metal, plaster or plastic) with various profiles that are applied to surfaces for decoration.
A elegant and simple design style that was popular during the late 1700’s through to 1800’s. It featured motifs borrowed from ancient Rome and Greece.
Something that is not transparent. For example, a material that cannot be seen through or allow light to pass through. Bathroom windows can quite often be opaque, especially on new builds.
Scale is one of the elements and principles of design and relates to size. For example, the size of one object in relation to other surrounding objects.
A panel placed against the wall behind a sink or stove that protects the wall from splashes.
A secondary colour is achieved by mixing together two primary colours. There are three of them; green (blue & yellow), purple (blue & red) and orange (red & yellow).
Ever Heard Of Shaker?
A distinctive style of furniture design with simple features such as tapered, straight legs and woven-strap chair seats. The Shaker style is renowned for exceptional design combined with functionality and beauty. It originates from an American religious sect during the mid 1770’s,
Tertiary colours are combinations of primary and secondary colours. And there are six of them; red-orange, yellow-orange, yellow-green, blue-green, blue-purple and red-purple.
A design element that is artificially constructed to mimic another type of material or piece.
An element or item that has been customised for an area or space.
Modern design is really not modern at all, but refers to the period between the 1920s and 1950s. Furniture styles with clean, streamline designs and tone-on-tone or monochrome colour palettes were popular.
A Danish word which describes comfort and cosiness with all things pre-loved and worn in.
A recessed area within a wall or room. Niches are common in bathrooms or entry ways.
A type of light fixture that is fastened to a wall for support.
So there you have it. You now have a basic understanding of some common interior design terms. This will make it easier for you to navigate your way around conversations with a professional. And will also help you to create and implement your personal ideas and designs.