Design Dilemma: Relaxed Spaces
Summer’s over, but not our appreciation for relaxed, restful spaces that are not straining to be hip. It’s sort of a summer attitude that we would love to see carried on throughout the year. We call it real style. Since the Europeans and Africans are the masters of this kind of look (as contrasted with Americans who are often concerned with airbrushed perfectionism) many of these interiors come from France or North Africa.
Above, it’s the tousled informality contrasted with elaborate and formal architectural details that make this space seem so utterly perfect, sans design trends or bold color. Below, kelly green walls, fantastically high ceilings and an old tile floor set off a shabbily chic English settee. It’s the imperfections in this space which make it special.
Below, more tousled informality seems a chic contrast to beautiful tiled floors and white-beamed ceilings.
And one more:
All of these spaces are so different, and yet, they all feel totally at ease, totally unselfconscious.
What are the keys to this relaxed style?
- Decorate with what you like, irrespective of the trends.
- Keep things comfortable. Can you put your feet up without fear?
- Mix and match with abandon. Don’t feel constrained to adhere to any one style, era or period.
- Celebrate imperfections. They are what make your space unique.
- Don’t overstuff your space. It’s the slightly “undone” feeling that lends many of these spaces that feeling of creative anticipation. There’s enough space in any of these places to allow for change, additions, subtractions. The feeling is one of a work in progress, not completion, or worse, stagnation.