The History of Interior Design

The History of Interior Design
Evidence shows that the first shelters were caves. They were decorated with drawings of plants, animals and human forms

Tribal cultures made huts with mud, tree branches & animal skins

Egyptians decorated huts with simple furniture, animal skins, sculptures & painted vases

Greeks employed strict rules for building construction

Both Romans & Greeks used vases, mosaic floors & wall paintings to beautify interior spaces

The byzantine style was noted for it's ornamental domes and lavish decorations

Gothic style is best known for vertical emphasis, figurative decoration & murals on walls

The Renaissance in Italy was known for the re-birth of a true sense of beauty. Walls glowed with colour, tapestries & velvet, furniture was elaborately carved

Michelangelo worked on his famous paintings in the Sistine Chapel

Baroque was a period of artistic style which used exaggerated detail to produce drama & Grandeur Rooms were rich with chandeliers & mirrors

Regency style was a new interpretation on Greek styles with emphasis on classic form most regency furniture combined Egyptian, Chinese and Gothic motifs with Neo-Classical elements. It was fashionable for chairs & curtains to match. Red was very popular.

The Industrial Revolution opened up interior design to the common man. Interior design magazines came into vogue.

The Aesthetic movement was radical & was a way for reformers to show their defiance of design standards of the age. The 'Art for Arts sake' Slogan was adopted which turned victorian values upside down.

Art Nouveau was an urban style inspired by natural forms

Eclecticism draws inspiration from multiple theories & styles - interior design styles are created by juxtaposing elements from various eras.

The Beaux arts style took it's name from France. It was imposing & grand & horrified many.

Interior design emerged as a profession. Elsie de wolfe was a prominent interior decorator at the time and photos in magazines helped spread eclecticism to middle classes

Frank Lloyd Wright credited for early success of modernism movement by creating the prairie style house

Dutch for 'the style', De Stiul was a Dutch artistic movement which explored a new utopian idea of harmony & order

International style blossomed in 1920's. Le Corbuisier Ludwig Wes Vanderrohe % Walter Gropius were big names for modern architecture

There was a radical simplification of form, a rejection of ornamental & adoption of glass, steel & concrete and preferred materials

Art deco flourished internationally throughout the 1930's. It represented glamour, elegance & modernity. Featured simple clean lines, striking colours & stylised patterns

As countries recovered from the war, there was a return to prosperity

'Suburban Sprawl'- Clausters of houses were developed & interiors were designed by the home owners

Vinyl was the flooring product of choice

After WWI, Air travel increased speed of communication & increased awareness of design

Post Modernism Borrowed styles from the past to create eclectic designs

Post modernism mixed various styles. The movement was synonymous with fantasy and freedom

Arevival of traditional style of post modernism new works were built on basis of classic principles

The late 90's saw interior design sky rocket thanks to TV makeover shows like 'Changing Rooms'

Contemporary interior design sees bright, bold colours matched with neutrals, smooth lines & a minimalistic look

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The History of Interior Design

shared by rachelIO on Jul 02, 2012 in Home


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Everyone wants their homes to look nice. From the cavemen to the Egyptians and the Baroque to Regency, people across the ages have witnessed a remarkable transformation of daily life and domestic dec...
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