Interior Design Psychic
Love it or hate it, the times are always changin’. Not everyone is a fan of things evolving. It’s called taste, and we all have our own. It’s what makes us unique. Some people prefer Ferrari and others prefer Lamborghini. Some Ford, others Chevy. Some could live eating sweets the rest of their lives, where others can’t do without savory. Some will never grow old of traditional interior design, while others are choosing flat and boxy with contemporary interior design.
"It'll soon shake your windows | And rattle your walls | For the times they are a-changin'." - Times They Are A-Changin', Bob Dylan, 1964
Here at Urbanata, we’re not hiding the fact that we’re a fan of contemporary and we embrace that. It’s okay if you aren’t, but there’s something about the cleanliness of rectilinear shapes and straight lines that we are keen on. It’s a fascinating subject to think about how trends change when a large population of people decides on something new being the “it” thing. At one point, the Renaissance was the “it” thing, and then another point in time art deco being the “it” thing. One day you wake up, and curves are all the rage, then the next everyone wants triangles. Right now, at least, it’s pretty hip to be square.
That’s where the excitement for designers comes. It’s impossible to predict the future, as much as you may believe you have it all figured out. It’s like the stock market: there are signals along the way, but you can never be sure of which direction you’re going - just enjoy the rollercoaster ride.
Designing the next big style is never something that comes suddenly. Changes are made incrementally, and those that don’t work get weeded out. The strong, lasting impressions stick when word gets around. A simple Google search of “traditional interior design” will fill your screen with a myriad of neutral earth tones, a plethora of patterns, tons of carved wood and decorative elements--that’s assuming you’re not currently reading this in the year 2843, in which we hope traditional has a bit of a different look.
Now compare that to the differences of a quick search of “contemporary interior design.” Your eyes are now awash with blinding white and stark contrasting black, dark rich woods, shades of gray (probably more than fifty), minimal extraneous fluff, light touches of subdued patterns, and an overwhelming number of right angles.
So why is this a thing and why do we like it? Well, design and cultural influence can be many different factors, including geopolitical or entirely experimental. Aesthetics will always be the fundamentals of what drives design, and it’s hard to deny when something just looks good. In the case of contemporary interior design, a lot of straight lines and very little decorative trim does an excellent job of not being distracting.
It’s easy to create cohesiveness when the only lines being followed are level or plumb. This creates the illusion of cleanliness, especially when paired with little to no clutter. Your eye will naturally slow down and observe breaks in straight lines or interesting shapes because it has more information to take in.
This allows other elements to be the features, such as an accent wall or a quirky piece of furniture. Different items are now becoming the focal point of a room, rather than many decorative pieces adding up to a whole. Again, traditional is not a bad thing; it’s just a different opinion and different look.
It’s not just about aesthetics either; it’s also about functionality. It’s technically impossible to fill more occupied volume in a limited space than with a square. You’re reaching the farthest bounds in an allotted footprint and maximizing your usability.
You can contain any other shape within a cube, and it will never occupy as much area. So when cabinets and dressers are a simple square or rectangle, it isn’t because they’re actively choosing not to be fun, but somewhat utilitarian. Who doesn’t want to get more use out of your space? Sure, there will continue to be design elements that lean on the side of being fanciful or novelty, but in modern metropolises where more people are flooding in by the day and space begins to become limited, functionality becomes a desire. That’s what it comes down to in the end: beautiful design that fulfills our needs. Take it or leave it, contemporary is here to stay.
By: Brock Slowinksi