The history of minimalism
Minimalism has its roots in music, but found its major incarnation in interior and exterior design. The reaction to the torrent of colorful Pop-Art in America in the 70's formed the basis of the minimalist movement.
Designers got tired of chasing after constant changes, bursts of random colors and dynamic, bright compositions and focused instead on exploring sharp, calm lines, clean space and natural colors and tones. It was in this climate that thea slogan of the minimalist movement appeared: "Small is beautiful."
Minimalism, unlike other decorating styles, uses no decorative elements. The major geometric element is the rectangle — either with sharp corners or geometrically precise corners with a slight curve. Its surfaces and forms, as well as their texture, are all that matter in minimalistic decor.
Modeling space and light using only necessary objects, is the essence of the style. Clear, muted colors and tones with no patterns and prints are all that are used in the minimalist style. White, soft grey and mild natural colors are frequently employed.
The color palette determines a well-balanced and smart lighting design with natural light dominating via large rectangular windows, complimented by functional and softly dispensed ambient electric light.
Another characteristic of the minimalist style is the importance of open space. Nothing should be in your way, whether you’re moving, relaxing or simply living. Freedom of space is key.
It's not for everyone
In minimalism, an object is less important than its absence. Interior design portrays the fullness of its inhabitant’s personality and life philosophy. Minimalistic design is a reflection of a person's goals — it suits a personality that demands balanced, un-crowded space.
People who feel that their lives are chaotic — people in search of rationality amid hectic and changing surroundings — often want to create a well-balanced, clean, calm and smart atmosphere.
And smart it is, with audio and video, advanced home appliances, AC, lighting, heating and everything else controlled from one portable device such as an iPad or iPhone.
All these features reflect a person's character, his will to achieve new goals by making smart moves. Someone with the means and desire can obtain the latest technologies for his minimalistic design and make his dream come true. His passion for modern, smart, functional and practical technology displays his up- to- date views and fresh, contemporary tastes.
If a space designed in a minimalistic key doesn't seem too simple, cold or clinical to you and if you feel comfortable expressing yourself with few words, then this might be the style for you.
Lighting is everything!
Lighting plays the main part in the minimalist style. The space has to be filled with diffused natural light, which is reflected from wall, ceiling and floor surfaces. Interiors in the minimalist style are airy—there is always freedom of space. Try to avoid dividing a room and create as much uniform space as possible.
If you can ’t entirely do without them, use glass dividers, doors and stairs to make a space look whole and expansive.
In small rooms, lighten the atmosphere by making the walls and ceilings appear further from each other with the help of mirrors and glossy elements. The placement and organization of objects in the room must be impeccable.
Lighting must be the protagonist of the room. Use all possibilities, including spot-lights, LED lighting, pendant lamps, floor and table lamps and wall fixtures — and use them smartly. Lighting must strike a perfect balanced between ambience and function.
Color in Minimalism
A minimalist designer chooses one or two colors, but often he stops at solid white, as it places the most emphasis on the lines and form of interior objects. To add vigor to an interior, simply pick details that contrast in color and texture to the background color.
Natural, soft tones are also typical of minimalism, including sky-blue, milky white, pale green, pale yellow, beige and, salmon pink.
Materials in minimalism
Modern minimalism employs sustainable, eco-friendly materials. A big change brought about by minimalism was the use of such diverse elements as glass, mirrors, polished cement, architectural fabric, stone and wire.
All the elements must fit together and create a whole. Wood is used a lot as well, especially cherry and pear.
The amount of furniture must be reduced to it's bare minimum. Furniture shouldn't have bright upholstery, intricate patterns or be large in size.
A simple geometric shape, solid color, soft upholstery and functionality are the prime criteria in choosing furniture for the minimalist style. Glossy and matte surfaces can correlate with shiny, polished elements. The furniture color can be contrasted to the wall color or be just plain white.
The amount of pieces should follow this proportion: 20% furniture to 80% free space.
Textiles in Minimalism
A minimalistic interior does not just mean taking everything out of a room and clearing the space, but selecting objects based on their functionality and necessity in a room. As for textiles, any pattern goes away.
Only solid colored fabrics are used. White textiles are preferred as well as natural materials, such as cotton or flax.
Windows are the source of natural light and shouldn't be covered by traditional curtains. Roman curtains, roll curtains or fabric jalousies can be selected for the minimalist style.
Objects in a minimalist design context
Minimalism praises does not highlight the presence of something, but its absence. Keeping this in mind, any object you choose must be perfect from any vantage point. Its texture and form must be uniform and exquisite. That is why art objects are usually treated as decorative objects in minimalism.
There is one drawback to these kinds of objects - their short lifespan. Their perfect texture fades quickly rather than getting better with age, like wine or vintage décor.
Storage is another issue, that has to be considered and resolved. Daily, utilitarian items need to be hidden.
Minimalistic ceiling design
As experts in ceiling systems, NYCeiling, Inc. highly recommends stretch ceilings for use in minimalistic interiors. Glossy ceilings expand small spaces, while matte ceiling fabric—which provides up to 16 feet (before a weld mark is needed) of perfectly smooth, eco-friendly material on the ceiling or wall— can be used for any other objective.
Its durable character keeps stretch ceiling material maintenance-free and easy to care for. The surface will stay unchanged during the whole period of use. For a big room, we offer a perfect solution to sound issues: acoustic printable architectural fabric.
Any lighting system is compatible with stretch ceilings, including spot-lights that provide great ambient light or LED lighting hidden behind the fabric that creates a relaxing, soft glow that you can control from an iPad.
As a result..
To sum up the minimalistic style, remember that it's essence is balance and practical simplicity. It creates a space filled with light and freshness where you’ll feel comfortable and free.
Our company will do our best to make it happen!