With residential and commercial projects it’s important to decide from the beginning
if custom built ins will be a part of the design. By factoring in the size, scale, colors, location and finish (s) of a built in within the framework of the overall design, the shelving will fit seamlessly into the design. Since built ins can take up a substantial portion of a space, deciding on the right combination of materials and finishes which match the flooring or perhaps an accent color will tie the room together. If the built in is an afterthought long after the design is complete it may be more challenging to match existing colors or move walls if necessary.
In the first example there are two different matching wood grains in the wall shelving unit which match the side tables next to the banquette. The shelf exteriors have a slightly smoother grain and the backsplash and undersides of the shelves incorporate a more visible wood grain. This subtle variation in addition to the medium color tone which matches the flooring and textiles offer balance to the space. The very large and long shelves do not overwhelm the space either by being a single finish or too dark/light. In the second example the designer mixed the natural wood shelves alongside a granite exterior fireplace in the living room. In the second example the shelves also match the wood flooring and the base is designed as almost an extension of the wood flooring. The gold backsplash accent creates the feeling more of a piece of furniture that of a shelving unit.
It should be noted that all three of these custom built ins are recessed which can offer more flexibility for integrating larger or more unusual designs.
Eclectic design is a mixture of styles, periods and sometimes unique elements in a space. The most effective eclectic design incorporates the right balance of disparate elements in a cohesive way. When done well the interior will look phenomenal and memorable, following a seemingly uniform style. On the other hand if too many items from different styles are put together without a thorough understanding of proportion, scale, color and balance, the space will feel more like a collector’s showcase of items instead of an effective, harmonious design. Today eclectic interior design often connotes a modern, clean style mixed with vintage elements. Here are some examples of an effective eclectic mix of design elements.
Selecting the right piece of art for an interior is essential to creating a memorable, iconic space. Artwork can serve as an inspiration and it can be helpful to look at pieces before the design rather than after. A piece of art can serve as a guide to frame the design aesthetic. Many galleries will permit clients to take artwork on approval to see if it works in a space. It’s helpful to be able to “live” with a piece of art for a few days. Often pieces will grow on you or you will like them less over time. It’s a very subjective area as art can look so different in one space, a gallery for instance, versus in your home. Helpful elements to look for is the size, the color, and the mood. Does the artwork feel cold or warm? Serene or angry? Feminine or masculine? Inspiring or transcendant?