Every good design plan will have a set of guidelines to help keep it on track. These fundamental truths serve to keep everything on track, and interior design is no exception. Though interior design gives every person different aspects of freedom to help express themselves; there are still principles to consider. Interior design is created by facilitating the seven different elements into your home or workspace. These elements will work together to create your design. Today, we are going to discuss rhythm. Let’s take a look!
Rhythm is the flow of the room. How do your eyes travel from one area to the next? Rhythm can tie together your design in a unique way. Consider a band with a guitarist, drummer, bass, and singer. While each member is critical to enhancing the performance, they must work together. If each performer plays a different song at once, the music is lost. Learning how to facilitate rhythm is key to design as well.
In music, rhythm is usually created by the percussionist through repetition. Repetition has a powerful psychological effect. Our brain will notice repetition and correlate multiple things as one. This powerful technique can be used in design. By adding repeating patterns or repetition of colors, we will subconsciously associate the room as being unified (another key principle). Having your curtains, pillows, and rugs with the same patterns will help create rhythm. While rhythm can easily be one of the most forgot elements to novice designers, it can be a key to your success! However, there is more just repetition used to create rhythm.
You can also help the flow of the room visually through gradation. We can easily identify this as shading. By incorporating gradation in a room, you can direct where people look in a room.
Likewise, you can also direct “eye traffic” through your furniture. If you want to emphasize the height of a vase, you may place a smaller vase followed by a medium vase followed by a large vase. This will easily be noticed, yet can help create rhythm in your home.
Another powerful tool used to create rhythm is contrast. Even in some songs, dramatic pauses can create a powerful impact. Likewise, you create a dramatic visual impact with contrast. The most common contrasting colors are black and white—think the “subway” types of tile that are so popular in bathrooms—but many opposing colors like red and blue can have this effect as well.
Like radial symmetry, radiation is creating rhythm revolving around your focal point in a room. This will establish the balance in your space while creating the rhythm you desire.
Rhythm is important and commonly overlooked. If you can master rhythm, you will achieve a beautiful and aesthetically pleasing space. There are still two more key principles that are important to design. Even with rhythm, a room can feel awkward if the proportions and scale are not considered. Check out the next part of the series to see the secret to scaling your space and achieving perfect proportions every time!