If you’re aware of the variations of styles when it comes to interior design, the stark colors and lack of clutter may have already caught your eye, elegant, modern minimalism. A style that focuses not only on form but function.
The minimalist style makes an easy, beautiful living space out of any home. But it takes work to fight those decorating urges a lot of us have collected over the years. In this article, we’re going to look at how to tone it down, keep it classy and achieve the elegance of minimalist design.
Choose the Best Materials for your Furniture
Modern design sensibilities are about how you use the space to frame what décor choices you make. However for a lot of people, there’s a concern that modern furniture is too cold and much too impersonal.
This all comes down to the materials you choose when you’re buying furniture. A lot of minimalist designers are turning to furniture made of more natural materials. The kinds of designs from PlumGoose.com and other providers.
Designers use porcelain with leather, brass and wood. The combination of a new style of design alongside classic, down-to-earth materials. Just because you’re going for the minimalist style, it doesn’t mean you can’t incorporate your own taste.
Clear the Decks
One aspect of the elegance of modern design is cleanliness. Both in the materials you select for the home and how well you look after them. Consider, for example, using hardwood floors instead of carpet.
They’re easier to clean and longer lasting, providing that you take the right steps to preserve them. Similarly, look at the materials you use in the kitchen. Try granite counter tops or other non-porous materials that allow spills and messes to be cleaned more quickly and easily.
These hard surfaces are not only more functionally fitting, but they don’t trap in light like going overboard on fabrics. Keep décor and housework simple by thinking about how to incorporate cleaner, clearer surfaces in the home.
Make Lighting a Focus
As I have hinted above, maximizing the light in your home is an important part of modern design. In a lot of ways, light equals space.
The more shadows and dark spaces in the home, the more cramped and small it can feel. So in addition to the furniture and materials you choose, you need to find more ways to introduce light. Both in terms of natural light and the fixtures.
In terms of how you get rid of shadow, place lights above the biggest pieces of furniture. Angled lighting produces more shadow, whereas light from directly above reduces them.
If you’re able, think about allowing for slits in the roof to let more natural light in from above as well. Growing up we had skylights in most of the larger rooms in our home.
Tie it Together with a Bit of Joie de Vivre
Minimalist design relies of reducing the amount of decorations and accessories that take up your space. However there are still some additions that may be wise to include.
For example you want to make it feel like a home, to feel welcoming regardless of what style you’re looking to attain. Simple touches can help you do that.
One way to do this is through the houseplants you carefully select that aren’t just for adding a bit of life.
They have very real health benefits in terms of making the air cleaner to breathe and in some cases they’re good for mental health too, helping you fight stress for a more relaxing home.
Keep Colors Bright
Minimalist design relies on space and light. Those two aspects give your home a spacious, clean look. The colors you use in the home can have a huge effect on that. Look to find a color scheme that compliments the colors and textures of your new furniture.
Look at the focal points or the biggest pieces on the wall and think about which colors best accompany it. At the same time, you want to choose from those the colors that are best for using light. These examples from Decoist.com show how people use contrasts.
A few ways people do this is to use black and white to better emphasize the space of their rooms. Others make use of lighter, sky blues and natural, light woods for their walls.
Don’t skimp on comfort
One of the most common misunderstandings of the minimalist style is that you have to get rid of everything comfortable in the home.
That couldn’t be farther from the truth. Minimalism is about reducing the clutter of the home while making it more functionally beneficial to you.
Getting rid of comfort isn’t functionally beneficial. Account for comfort to make all your senses feel more at home.
Embrace comfort as part of your minimalist style. Don’t get rid of your favorite seats and by all means, tie the room together with a rug that feels good.
There’s no point to creating an elegant, gorgeous home if you don’t feel at ease in it or feel like it’s one of those rooms only to be seen not used. Make sure you always have a place you can relax and feel good.
Free it from clutter
Getting rid of absolutely everything is, as we said, not what a minimalist design is about. Rather it’s about making the best use of your space with the things that matter.
This does, however, mean that you need to fight clutter in whatever ways you find possible.
Take the time, even just five minutes a day, to clear as much clutter and organize things as you can. Find or create more storage spaces that you can keep in inconspicuous locations.
Use a proper system to organize your bills and tax forms and all the paperwork we need for our day-to-day lives. Create a makeshift mudroom at the entrance so that people enter with only the things they really need.
Select multi-purpose pieces
One great way you can cut down on the amount of things you have inside the home, while keeping the function, is by choosing furniture that does more for you.
Even improving ways that they can. For example, in your children’s rooms, you can get beds that have desks attached to them.
Thus keeping more space in the room. Homedit.com shows one idea about using hooks on the wall to hang chairs from.
These chairs can act as added storage, then fold back up when you’re not using them. Or if you need more seats, you simply lift them down from the wall.
Multipurpose furniture can make sure that you’re not using two tools where one would be just as good.
Keeping windows clear
A lot of design concepts that led up to the birth of the minimalist style was based on cluttering your house with as many knickknacks as possible.
Making sure no space was left clear. We now know that this can create a rather untidy environment. But it’s not just the floor and the furniture that was full of unnecessary additions. The rest of the home, including the windows, were victims of this style too.
So you need to clear up the windows. Sometimes, only the most minimal of additions, like a small houseplant, can keep it looking great. As far as the window treatments go, try to use those that let in as much light as possible. Think horizontal blinds, not thick curtains.
Another vertical space that needs your consideration is the walls of each room. A lot of people will have understandable concerns about entirely getting rid of wall décor.
The great thing is that you don’t have to. Instead, think about keeping it subtle and simple. If you have a piece of art you love, by all means, make the focal point of the room.
Use mirrors to maximize the effect of lighting in the room. If you have bright wall colors, think about a wooden frame on some small aspect of the décor to pair the light with the earthy tones.
If you have one aspect of your life you love to show off, we’re covering that in our next point.
A lot of people want to go the path of simple, minimalist design so they have place that looks sleek and adds less fuss to their lives.
However, going minimalist doesn’t mean getting rid of all traces of your personality. We all have hobbies and interests and some of us like to make them as much a part of our homes as they are our lives.
It’s entirely acceptable for you to make a space where you display your tastes. A place to hang guitars, a bookcase, a display of records. The key is to keep it classy and subtle.
Don’t go garish and let it dominate a room. Rather, let it serve as a point of interest.
Remember that reduction is the name of the game to the minimalist style. Always look out for ways you can reduce the clutter and confusion of your décor.
At the same time, don’t feel like you have to get rid everything. It’s the little touches that really make the style yours.