by Chantelle McLarty, CM Interior Design –
Scale and proportion are often overlooked but are a crital element in design. When designing a space, it is important to consider the relationship between objects while keeping in mind scale and proportion.
Designers need to consider, and are often asked, what is the most functional and properly-sized furniture that will work best in a space to create a sucessful design.
In residential interior design, scale relates to the size of an object compared with the space it occupies, while proportion is concerned with the relationship of elements to one another.
You may have the perfect colour palette and style in mind for a space, but by choosing the wrong size furniture and accent pieces, the design will not be successful.
Selecting the right scale of furniture and accent pieces will make a room feel balanced.
For example: while at first it may seem that a piece of artwork is too large or too small, proportionally the scale of the surrounding furniture pieces may balance the artwork, making it work for that room.
Sometimes furniture needs to be repositioned within a space to create the proper balance; this is particularly true in small spaces like condos and townhomes and it can make all the difference.
Try adding larger pieces in a smaller space to create impact and balance rather than a bunch of smaller, mixed furniture pieces.
Colour, style and art selection – these are all subjective, but scale, proportion and balance are rules most of us underestimate and often overlook.
While the typical convention would be to use large pieces for a large space and smaller pieces for smaller spaces, this isn’t necessarily the case. Often bold strokes can create the impression of space, while too many small pieces can make a room feel cluttered. For example: a larger scale lamp with a stack of books with an interesting vase creates balance on an entry table and often works better than several small pieces of the same height – this creates visual interest along with appealing scale and proportion.
A coffee table that is too small or too large can throw off a living room and create imbalance. Maybe the room would work better with a round table. Similarly, an undersized area rug makes a small room seem smaller and a large room look disconnected. It is ideal in a seating arrangement to have the front legs on the area rug.
Every home should ultimately reflect the homeowner’s style, using scale, proportion and balance to acheive an overall sucessful design.
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