In recent years, there has been a growing preference for minimalistic design. What’s great about this is that those that do want to get involved in the trend don’t have to spend any extra money: indeed, they can get closer to the aesthetics of minimalism by simply throwing some things away! These are some of the key minimalist trends and techniques that have never gone away:
Clean pale colours
The use of pale colours has always been a key feature within minimalist design. There remains, just as there always was, something wonderfully stylish about a room decked out solely in white (or off-white) and then dotted with elements of colour. If the room‘s walls are largely pale, then the addition of even one or two warmer colours – such as those from a sofa or armchair – can actually make the place feel more comforting. Even something like choosing from a wide range of table bases to match any theme can add a splash of colour without breaking the bank.
Compactness, but not necessarily sparsity
Many people still confuse minimalist and compact design with sparsity. Minimalist design isn’t about having the least amount of items (though that can help) but about not taking up space or spending money for the sake of it. For instance, a standard room might have a double bed, a chest of drawers, two lamps and a TV in it. A minimalist design will simply make use of pendant lighting, built-in storage and a fold-away bed. As a result, the design feels far more spacious and uncluttered, but boasts the same practical features.
Use matching accessories
This is a particularly useful technique for creating a more minimalist bathroom, but can work in any space. The over-riding trend is to create a room that has the same visual aesthetic as a professional room would – i.e. a bathroom mimics a spa, a bedroom looks like one you’d find in a hotel, etc. Using matching containers for soaps, lotions, creams and the like can help to enhance this feeling of professional coherence. One of the reasons that bathrooms in particular often look more cluttered is that they contain no end of things in different colours, whether they’re cosmetic products, razors, sponges or mirrors. The more accessories match and the more uniform the colour schemes, the more minimalistic and compact the overall aesthetic will be.
Focus expressly on the purpose of the room
One of the key techniques within minimalism is to focus solely on the purpose of the room. For instance, a standard kitchen might feature a number of other features in addition to those required to cook food, such as a TV, some books or even a laptop. If you want to achieve a more minimalistic, compact design, then these extras need to be kept away. Keep the TV, books and other electronics in the living room, and leave the kitchen for the preparation and eating of food.
Use more practical furniture
Finally, it’s important to make use of furniture around the house that offers practicality and compactness rather than style for the sake of it. For instance, if you’ve got a spare room that’s already short of space, it might be worth considering the installation of a day-bed, so that during the day there’s more floor space available. In the kitchen, it’s worth exploring a folding table, as these can be slid under worktops when not in used, allowing for a less cluttered room. Essentially, any furniture that can be slid out of the way when not in use is the minimalist’s dream!
This article was written by freelance writer and mother of three, Kathryn Thompson. Follow her on Twitter: @katht35