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  • Writer's pictureKatherine Walker

10 Things you didn't know about Interior Design

I don't know about you, but I love to learn, I love museums, reading, art, psychology, and the history of people, places, and things. I thought it would be fun to share some things about Interior Design that you may not know.

1) Interior design dates back to the ancient Egyptians

People always think of pyramids, ancient civilizations, and when they think of Ancient Egypt. The Egyptians also took pride in the design and decor of their interiors. They had skilled artisans who would produce furniture made of high-quality materials such as wood, gold, and stone. In Ancient Egypt, the design of their homes would serve as a sign of status. Also, the workmanship you can see in preserved examples of the tombs shows how much pride they took in making interiors beautiful with intricate paintings and carvings on walls.

ancient Egypt workmanship intricate paintings carvings hieroglyphics

ancient Egypt workmanship intricate paintings carvings hieroglyphics

2) Elise de Wolfe was the first interior designer who was paid for her services, defining a career in 1913

Elise de Wolf was an American Actress born in New York City, she became known for decorating her home. In 1905 with the help of a long-time Architect friend, she earned her first commission for a project. This was the first time anyone had been paid to provide Interior Design services! When the project was finished, it was a huge departure from the normal heavy and dark Victorian style and was a huge success. From that point on she became extremely influential in her field.

3) Interior decorating and interior designing aren’t the same

Interior Design and Interior Decorating are often used interchangeably however they are different. While many similarities are shared between the two, designers are more versed in space planning, construction documents, managing contractors, and working with Architects. An Interior Designer has formal schooling and certification, whereas Decorators do not have the same formal schooling and are typically not licensed. Interior decorating involves adorning a space with decorative elements. Interior designers may decorate, but decorators do not design.

4) There is a psychology behind interior design

Most of our lives are spent indoors, therefore the interiors we spend our time in play a major role in our behavior. The psychology behind interior design is known as environmental psychology. Environmental Psychology studies the relationship between humans and the external world, and how natural and human-built surroundings impact how people feel, think and behave. There have been numerous studies done on access to daylight, color perception, acoustics, furniture layouts, workplace productivity, sick building syndrome, retail behavior, well-being, etc all driven by interiors.

5) Design trends are different in different countries

This may seem obvious but design trends are different in different countries! Although social media brings us all closer together than ever before, much like fashion, certain trends are different around the world. Also much like fashion, many Interior design trends and products originate in Europe before making their way to the States. Many cultural, and living differences do play a role in trends as well but it's interesting to see how trends are adapted in different parts of the world.

Some current trends in Classic English kitchens differ because of the age and architecture of the home, as seen by deVOL kitchens.

classic english kitchen age Europe culture

classic english kitchen age Europe culture

6) Most interior designers by state

Florida has the second highest employment level of interior designers! According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the top five states with the most interior designers are:

California - 8,330 Interior Designers
Florida - 6,470 Interior Designers
New York - 6,110 Interior Designers
Texas - 4,690 Interior Designers
Illinois - 2,390 Interior Designers

7) Interior design is a broad profession

Interior design is a broad profession, spanning many different areas of expertise. While most commonly known in residential, furniture stores, and commercial interior design, interior designers can also specialize in more niche areas. For instance, Healthcare, Workplace, Hospitality, Retail, Film and Video Production, Fashion, Museum and Gallery Exhibition, Cruise Ships and Yachts, Aircraft and Private Jets, and so on. Within Residential, designers can also specialize in a certain area of the home such as offices, and playrooms, have you heard of the new show on Netflix, "How to Design a Sex Room"... interior design is an art, and art can take on many forms!

8) The coined term interior design isn’t even 100 years old

Interior Design is defined by Merriam-Webster as 'the art or practice of planning and supervising the design and execution of architectural interiors and their furnishings.' The term 'interior decorator' was first used in America in the early 1900s. The term 'interior designer' was coined in the 1930s, by a magazine called “Interior Design and Decoration.”

9) Interior design is regulated by building codes and ADA

A qualified interior designer will understand building codes, life safety, proper egress, flammability requirements, and Accessibility requirements. Local and State Building codes, and the Americans with Disabilities Act play a huge role in the interior design profession. The Great Chicago fire in 1871 changed building codes forever, as the fire destroyed over 17 THOUSAND buildings. After the fire, laws were passed to prevent that from happening again. The Americas with Disabilities Act (ADA) was signed into law in 1990 to prevent discrimination against people with disabilities.

10) There are 6 principles of Interior design

Balance, Harmony and Unity, Rhythm, Emphasis and Focus, Contrast and Variety, and Proportion are the six principles of interior design. Balance is the idea of visual weight for a visual equilibrium. Harmony and Unity are the agreement of parts together to the whole, where everything seems to belong together. Rhythm is the repetition of elements in a regular pattern, such as identical objects such as furniture, doors, plants, etc. Contrast and Variety is the juxtaposition of dissimilar elements, black and white, left and right, there needs to be contrast to create liveliness. Finally, Proportion is the relationship between one part of an object to another., this can also be referred to as scale. These principles can be explored in detail as each plays an important role in interior design.

So there you have it! 10 Things about Interior Design you probably didn't know. We would love to share our expertise with you on your upcoming project.

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