Essential Principles of Interior Design

As responsible individuals, we spend at least 40 hours a week at our place of work. These environments are more powerful than we recognize and, thus, are well-thought out in regard to design. Everything from the wall hangings to paint color will affect our mood and ability to produce good work. That is why an entire industry of architects and interior designers flourish in creating seamless environments for both home and commercial spaces.
Design is much more than just wall hangings and paint color. A great deal of knowledge, both architectural and design-oriented, is critical to employing effective interior design. Designers must be licensed to offer their expertise in a given space, as well. While a final product might appear simple to achieve, it is anything but the case. Interior designers follow a set of principles which help accomplish homeostasis.

Consider the following interior design principles as essential to a work space environment:
Unity & Harmony

In order for an entire work space to be cohesive, the colors and design choices must resonate throughout all rooms of the space. Typically, a designer will showcase the architectural layout with a choice of two or three colors. These colors will complement one another throughout the entirety of the space.

In terms of interior design, balance refers to the equal supply of visual weight in the work space. This can be best understood by:

Symmetrical balance: When two identical objects are positioned on both sides of a vertical axis, mimicking the human form.

Asymmetrical balance: The placement of dissimilar objects to achieve a less manufactured look and feel. This is often understood as a focal point in a room that the designer purposely uses to attract the eye.

Radial balance: The process of placing all objects in a room around a center point of focus.

Focal Point

A good designer will enforce a focal point in every room. The focal point should ideally be a main attraction of the room, without overshadowing the other elements of design. Everything like scale, color, theme, and style are considered in creating an effective focal point. For example, the President's main office will establish a focal point via an impressive desk. All surrounding elements will reinforce this space.


The rhythm of design refers to the visual pattern that appears throughout the space through continuous, organized, and recurring movements. Rhythm should lead one's eye from one place to the next and includes:

Repetition: Reinforcement of a chosen design element throughout the work space.

Progression: The general increase or decrease of a design element throughout the space, best understood by size gradation.

Transition: The element of design that actually leads one's eyes from place to place. It is typically subtle and hard to define, like the curve of a light fixture.

Contrast: The best way to explain contrast is by example. The placement of black and white table settings is a good one. The stark difference will set off a unique and contrasting design experience.


Details are those elements of design that visitors notice after they concentrate on focal points. These are the elements that bring the design full circle.

Color: Colors are probably the most powerful force on a person's mood.

Scale/Proportion: Scale is the portion of design that maintains the ratio of one design to another.

By Michelle Buckles
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  1. This is interesting. I will add and apply those tips because I'm planning to redecorate my place soon. Thanks! :)

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    Ayala Land Premeir Senta

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