Design Tips

Last week I was a guest speaker at Blue Valley West High School's Interior Design class!

I basically told them my own story (the idea of "story" seems to be so powerful to me lately.  Everyone has their own story and the depth behind story can mean so much; purpose, identity, brand...  Who doesn't love hearing a story?  In this case, not necessarily fictional- although that makes me think of the movie Big Fish, but our history and how our journey leads to our future)  My story included  the steps it took to get me to this point in my career (childhood, interests, classes, KSU interior architecture program, work, experience) and what I'm up to now.  Of course, it's an adventure and I'm excited to see how the "now" becomes my history and what my new "now" will  be in the future!

I thought of a few little Design Tips to give you all:

grouping like-items: to visually organize things, it helps to group them.  Examples shown are similar vases clustered, books arranged by color, collectibles organized by wall display boxes, and many different items on shelves to show how grouping items de-clutters a space for your eye.  This is the easiest way to display collections without them taking over and overwhelming a space.

adding something natural: just by adding an object such as a wood table, linen pillows, flowers, or by using natural materials like stone, brick, or reclaimed wood you help to ground a space.  A natural object helps to warm up a contemporary room, make guests feel comfortable in a formal space, or to add some organic visual interest to a clean-lined modern home.  It helps to blend the line between man-made and down-to-earth.

repetition: this is another trick to keep organization and consistency visually with items you want to display or accentuate.  Repetition creates visual harmony. The framed photos along a long wall but instead of hung in clusters and grouped they are hung along a central line which creates repetition.  A fun idea is to pick out a favorite wallpaper and use it to line the risers of an old staircase.  This creates surprise but also visual repetition and interest in an otherwise sometimes predictable area of the home.

symmetry vs. balance: sometimes a tricky one to understand, just because things might not be symmetrical does not mean they aren't balanced.  For instance, the mantle in the photo has a mirror centrally positioned above it and stools on either side on the floor = symmetry, but the branch, frames, vase and decorative objects are positioned asymmetrically creating a more interesting composition to look at yet the visual weight of the objects are still balanced on either side.  Main point: asymmetry is much more interesting to look at and experience.  Asymmetry excites the eye while keeping it balanced doesn't overwhelm the eye.  

Tell me if any of these tips helped you in your quest for solving your own design dilemmas.  I'd love to see pictures of projects you've conquered!  Feel free to chime into the conversation.

1 comment:

Austin & Terri said...

These are very helfup tips. I never have any idea how to do any of this stuff, so this helps a lot! Thanks Kara!