European interior design has a rich and diverse tradition with some trends dating back centuries. From Italian, French, German, Victorian, Mediterranean, Scandinavian styles and influences, Europe blends an eclectic and unique style that’s full of history. We have featured furniture design by Italian designers Ezio Riva and Arturo Montanelli, which illustrates northern European design. Here we’d like to go over a few classic interior designs from around the continent to inspire your home.
Scandinavian interior design is all about maximizing light and space with luminous, breezy and minimalist spaces as the main feature. Because northern winters can be very dark and gloomy, Scandinavian interior design focuses on ways to bring light into living spaces. From white walls to light-colored wood like oak or ash, muted colors, and accents, to decluttered, functional layouts, Scandinavian style showcases an easy and uncomplicated aesthetic. Whereas other styles focus on more cluttered design styles to make a place look cozy, Scandinavian style shies away from the richness and intricacies of traditional styles and focuses on functional contemporary elements.
A style of the 18th to early 19th century in the UK, Victorian interior design is characterized by rich and intricate designs, including high ceilings, elaborate molded plaster cornices, and marble fireplaces. House Beautiful also notes how the décor features darker motifs, with dark furniture and decorations in the dining room, study, and other areas. While these homes have rich designs and décor, unless upgraded, the out-dated appliances and plumbing might cause an issue for modern fixtures and gadgets, like your boiler for example. So, if you’ve just inherited one or are in the market for a Victorian character home, it’s very important to ensure that professionals inspect them beforehand to give you an idea of what you’re getting yourself into. In fact, HomeServe recommend always making sure that your utilities are well-maintained — plumbing, electrics, boiler, and central heating are just as important as your interiors. And if you have one of the aforementioned ‘on the way out’ you will need to get it replaced immediately. Even more so if homeowners are looking to take on a Victorian house and renovate it. This will not only ensure that your décor and furniture remain cozy and comfortable, but also ensure a worry-free home knowing that your heating system and fixtures are operating optimally.
German interior design is generally associated with the industrial design style of the Bauhaus era, but nowadays German designers are focused on cozier, luxury designs that take a backseat to functionality. Whereas German design was characterized by the idea of creating a total work of art, by meshing fine art and industrial craftsmanship, a new generation of designers is focusing on a new elegance and socially responsible design. As such, new elegance features furniture made from lightweight and responsibly sourced materials that are sturdy and elegant. It also marries popular designs from the past with a contemporary flair by providing an updated style to daybeds, cocktail chairs and screens.
Italian interior design and architecture are synonymous with beauty and style and balance a clean look with cozy warmth. Think of a cross between Victorian and Scandinavian design, combining the best elements from each style. Italian designer Elisabetta Rizzato explained how modern Italian style is not about rich patterns and textiles that characterize traditional European styles. Therefore, look to anchor the look of your room with bold pieces like an oversized leather sofa coupled with eye-catching pieces in milder shades and textures like gold or marble for a mix of classic and ultra-modern Italian style.
For more design inspiration, please continue to check out WE AND THE COLOR.
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