Minimalist style

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In contrast to traditional interior design, which is all about filling or decorating space, minimalism is about taking away – reducing elements to the bare minimum, preserving empty space and making us more aware of that space.
Peggy's Zen living room makeover, Seattle, Washington, USA
Many of today's minimalist interiors trace their origins back to the Bauhaus Design School that originated in pre-WWII Germany, and dictated that ‘form follows function.' It disdained ornamentation or decoration. There is also a strong Japanese aesthetic in the simple lines and empty spaces of many minimalist homes.
This ‘less is more' philosophy places greater emphasis on underlying shape and structure. Walls, floors, simple surfaces and the play of light on surfaces become important design elements in themselves – eliminating the need to cover or decorate them.

More than just a design style, minimalism dictates a certain lifestyle. It is essentially ‘anti-clutter'. Minimalism demands that ‘stuff' is eliminated or at least hidden away. This is not a design aesthetic to be embraced by hoarders, collectors, or people who aren't good at putting things away. It's perfect for people who like ‘everything in its place'. Good storage is probably the first prerequisite to achieve a minimalist look and the illusion of greater space.

Colour is used sparingly. Wall colours tend to be neutral, with colour used to draw the eye to specific elements, to create a dramatic contrast, or to make subtle connections between architectural forms. White, in its many versions, creates a ‘blank canvas' backdrop and helps to achieve the illusion of greater space.

In the absence of colour, light is used to create visual interest,highlighting areas and creating dramatic shadows to emphasise form. Natural light is often filtered through screens, louvres or trees.  Careful interior lighting is used to emphasise shapes and forms.

Furniture is kept to a minimum. This is not the place for the ornate or overstuffed. On the other hand, there’s no reason why comfort should be sacrificed to style. A well-designed sofa or chair will offer both.

Today, the minimalist aesthetic extends not only to furniture, but to many household appliances. The clean lines of today's digital kitchen appliances are well suited to minimalist homes. Fridges tend to be concealed behind kitchen cabinetry. TV sets and other electronic gadgetry can also be concealed – even the most beautifully designed TVs don't add much to the minimalist look of a room.

The basic rule is ‘restraint,' but that's not to say that minimalism need be cold and sterile. There's plenty of room for personality, colour, drama – and comfort.  It's worth bearing in mind that in a home using raw, stark surfaces, good heating and warm lighting are crucial.

 
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  • I love vintage homely finds.
  • KH says
    Nice and peaceful.
  • Mel80 says
    My mother always said "Less is more"!!! And it turns out that quite often mothers' actually knows what they're talking about!!!
  • Cinty says
    Mothers always know what they're talking about. Even though we don't want to admit it! Hehe. Even more so when they're interior designers
  • Wice says
    An examples of minimalist art by Ad Reinhardt - who does he think he is kidding!
    • Dee-Dee says
      ...hmmm I wonder who bought this piece and how much they parted with....
    • Starlite5 says
      Good concept...I love the fact that everthing has it's place but I would probably have a room dedicated to storage with everything on hand on shelves and in cupboards and knowing me labelled so I could find everything more easily.
    • Dee-Dee says
      ...I like the contemporary look in a minimalist form....I have plans for my dream home right down to the curtains....lol...have been making adjustments on it for years but would really love to combine it with a technology driven home system...all connected through a central point....I dream about having the ultimate Entertainment, Communications and Security unit with all the bells and whistles......
    • Rosie says
      I love how tidy it all looks!

      Your dream sounds ideal Deed.
      • Dee-Dee says
        it does inDeed Rosie :-)
        • New Member says
          Hi Chelsey girls, I really like this blog.

          Recently I've found this this amazing lamps, all of them are inspired in jazz and soul musicians They have a new one, Clark , and also one inspired in Amy Winehouse. I think you will love them because they are so vintage too! take a look.

          But only for you I recommend this :)
          http://www.delightfull.eu/floor/ike_floor.html

          hope you enjoy it!!
          • New Member says
            Hi Chelsey girls, I really like this blog.

            Recently I've found this this amazing lamps, all of them are inspired in jazz and soul musicians They have a new one, Clark , and also one inspired in Amy Winehouse. I think you will love them because they are so vintage too! take a look.

            But only for you I recommend this :)
            http://www.delightfull.eu/floor/ike_floor.html

            hope you enjoy it!!
            • Wice says
              This post once again, looks ominously like an advertisement to steer people to a website (albeit a Portuguese one). Note the slightly stilted English! More pointing, however, is that the lamp is pretty ordinary.

              Does this type of post matter? Maybe not unless we all start advertising our businesses!

              PS: Apologies if I have misjudged you New Member in which case I take it all back :-)
              • New Member says
                Hi Rosie, not spam of course. I post twice by mistake. I'm a freelance journalist that love to write about design. If you want you can visit some of the blogs I write for designgallerist.com and mydesignagenda.com
              • Wice says
                A minimalistt cartoon!

                If you like it you can see more at: http://www.mymodernmet.com/profiles/blogs/minimalist-comics-that-make
              • New Member says
                I cherish the way that everything has it's place yet I would most likely have a room committed to capacity with everything close by on racks and in organizers and knowing me named so I could discover everything all the more effortlessly.
                write my essay for me free online
                Nate Ferguson

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