Interior for traditional home design refers to an amalgamation of several traditional styles from around the world in a single space. Design traditions from places as varied as England, Italy, Spain, France, China and the United States become part of a single distinctive traditional decor.
Furniture – Traditional furniture provides classic style but doesn’t skimp on comfort. Adding a generously proportioned wing chair or a plumply cushioned camel-back sofa to a room conveys an air of relaxation and leisure. Furniture in traditional rooms is usually placed in a configuration that encourages easy conversation; pieces are relatively close to one another, ensuring that no one has to shout across the room to be heard. End tables, conveniently placed alongside sofas and chairs, are the ideal spot for lamps, special collections and objects d’art. Upholstered pieces are formal and tailored but arranged to promote casual conversation. A single home or room may include American Federal pieces alongside Chippendale and Louis XVI pieces. These styles lend themselves to darker woods. Rooms are designed to be full, but not cluttered.
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Color Palette – As it refers to decorating, the term “traditional” can mean the particular style of a specific time period, such as neoclassical or Georgian. Today, however, traditional often describes a combination of sophisticated, yet not pretentious, furniture pieces from various periods and countries, as well as luxurious accessories and trimmings.
Interior for traditional home design is characterized by warm color tones. Common combinations include burgundy and gold or dark green and cream. Wall colors tend to be lighter while fabrics, rugs and upholstery accommodate mid-tone colors. Although woods typically range from honey to chocolate brown, painting them gray or white to create light-toned traditional spaces is acceptable.
The refined look of traditional decorating calls for rich, warm colors, especially on walls. Deep red and marigold yellow have long been popular color choices; for an updated traditional color palette, consider taupe, cream or a tint of lavender. Decorative paint techniques, including stippling and combing, can add texture and visual appeal to rooms. Wallpaper and wallpaper borders offer an alternative to paint and can also cover up wall imperfections, especially in older homes.
Fabrics – Much of the style’s color comes from its abundant use of fabrics. Traditional window treatments are made from many yards of fabric that usually fall to the floor. Solid-colored velvet, chintz, crewel, and tone-on-tone damask fabrics are all traditional choices. Highly textured or shiny fabrics are usually avoided.
Traditional home design and decor should have an overall cohesive, refined look, but you can include eclectic elements as long as they reflect the room’s overall look and feel in their shape or color. Traditional doesn’t have to be conventional; by adding unexpected touches, you can be sure that your decor will never be a bore.