The basic rules of proportion and scale are unchanging. They are reinterpreted according to the needs of the time. I like simplicity and I believe in restraint. Above all, there should be harmony-of proportion, line, color, and feeling. The most important element in decorating is the relationship between objects- in size, form, texture, color, and meaning. None of these is in good taste in itself but only in relationship to where it has been placed and what purpose it is to serve.
Eleanor McMillen Brown
Interior design is about the big picture and the big picture works when it is the result of a carefully planned compilation of elements and principles.
When the principles are spurned,, there is a very good chance that a space will appear haphazard and chaotic.
These principles are basic to all good design and must be treated with the respect they are due and should be altered only with care.
Balance: You will most likely feel if a room is unbalanced. Balance simply refers to the visual equilibrium of a room which is achieved by the placement of objects within a room according to visual weight.
Shape, color and texture all help to determine their visual weight.
Focus: This refers to the direction the eye travels and remains as it first enters a space. A multitude of focal points in a room make it quite uncomfortable as there is no place for the eye to rest
Harmony: This is achieved when the elements of a room work together to form a visually pleasing cohesiveness with the proper balance of variety and unity. Harmony in design is similarity of components or objects looking like these belong together. This unity can be defined as a design thread that tells a story from one element to another.
Proportion: Ah, Proportion and his best friend Scale . This is something the real estate agent fails to mention when showing you a home with a two story great room. Technically, proportion refers to how the elements within an object relate to the object as a whole while scale relates to the size of an object compared to the space in which it is located.
Rhythm: The rhythm of a room controls the visual flow around a room. Rhythm allows the eyes to move around from one object to another and creates a harmonious atmosphere in a room
A family home that incorporates these is not unlike the paints that an artist uses in the creation of a breathtaking work of art…each color and brushstroke plays off another color within the guidelines of design principle. The result is a warm, inviting space for living.