History of Interior Design

By continm
  • 6000 BCE

    The Stone Age: 6000B.C.-2000B.C.

    The Stone Age:  6000B.C.-2000B.C.
    -First evidence of interior design was found in prehistoric human dwellings
    -Their dwellings were built for practicality
    -Not much has remained but evidence shows that they took time to decorate their dwellings with drawing of animals, plants and humans
    -Mud, animal skin and sticks were used in the construction of their dwellings
    -Check out this video on cave art! The first evidence of interior decorating!
  • 2700 BCE


    -While the civilians of Egypt still lived in mud huts the royal families lived in the magnificent buildings they are well known for.
    -These buildings were decorated with murals which depicted their history and beliefs. They had basic furniture as well as vases and sculptures to use in their homes.
    -The Hypostyle Hall:
    Multiple, usually large, pillars that held up the roof, naturally consumed much of the floor space of such halls.
    -Decorated with religious motifs (1290-1224B.C.)
  • 2565 BCE

    Egyptian continued... Architecture

    Egyptian continued... Architecture
    -The pyramids exemplify the Egyptians’ architectural and engineering achievements
    -Their tombs and temples were built of stone and fitted together with extreme precision
    -They took pride in their craftsmanship of their furniture, developing joints that are still used today such as mortise and tenon
    -Famous Giza Pyramids built over the span of years (2575-2465)
  • 2000 BCE

    Neolithic Europe 2000-1700 B.C

    Neolithic Europe 2000-1700 B.C
    -Neolithic Dwellings: Skra Brae consists of 8 dwellings built together
    Other structures included round circular one room structures -Handmade ceramic pottery for practical and decorative use, some of which items were decorated with paint.
  • 1332 BCE

    Egyptian continued... Interiors

    Egyptian continued... Interiors
    -Their interiors were minimally furnished but decorated with bright colours
    -They took pride in their craftsmanship of their furniture, developing joints that are still used today such as mortise and tenon
    -They created design motifs based on their native vegetation—lilies, lotuses, reeds, date palms, and papyrus
    -Interior View of King Tutankhamun's Tomb and Wall Paintings in Tomb (He reigned from 1332-1323B.C.)
  • 1200 BCE

    Greek 1200-31 B.C.

    Greek 1200-31 B.C.
    -The improvements in civilization allowed for regular people to decorate their homes in their own style, the wealthier of which had furniture containing silver and ivory. The Greeks also brought in rules for construction of buildings which iconically contained impressive pillars.
    -They fashioned hairline joints without mortar
    -They also developed the wooden truss
    -Their designs were interlocking geometric shapes
    -The Parthenon displays a high sense of order, proportion, and symmetry
  • 453 BCE

    Roman 453 B.C.-480 A.D.

    Roman 453 B.C.-480 A.D.
    -This was the first time where ordinary people, not only royals could could show their wealth through their homes.
    -They decorated with murals and mosaics as well as bespoke furniture.
    -Typical Roman furniture had clawed feet and soft furnishings.
    -Example of a Roman Curule chair
  • 430 BCE

    Greek continued... an example of furniture

    Greek continued... an example of furniture
    -The Greek klismos Chair featured concave back and splayed legs
  • 72

    Roman continued... Architecture

    Roman continued... Architecture
    -They ruled much of Europe, The Near East, and northern Africa
    -They built roads and aqua ducts
    -Their architecture were copies from Greek forms and then further developed
    -One of the key to the development to Roman architecture and interiors was the use of concrete which strengthened masonry The
    -The Colosseum 72-80 A.D. seated approximately 60 000 spectators
  • 500

    Byzantine 500-1500 A.D.

    Byzantine 500-1500 A.D.
    -During the Byzantine era grand domes and extravagant decorations became the norm.
    -The important architecture and interiors belonged to religious structures
    -During this time the pendentive dome was developed
    -Mosaic technique interiors which were small pieces of coloured marble or glass that were pressed in wet cement to create elaborate designs
    -The church of Hagia Sophia (532-537 A.D.) in Istanbul has an open main vault that is richly decorated in mosaic tile patterns
  • May 13, 900

    The Middle (Dark) Ages 900-1100 A.D.

    The Middle (Dark) Ages 900-1100 A.D.
    -The fall and breakup of the Roman empire threw Western Europe into a period of upheaval
    -Widespread poverty
    -During the dark ages there was the downfall of interior design which meant home interiors went down to basic wood panelling, minimal furniture and stone slab floors.
  • May 13, 1140

    Gothic 1140-1400 A.D.

    Gothic 1140-1400 A.D.
    -Following the dark ages, decorative ornaments and colours were brought into homes again.
    -The Gothic era is noted for its figurative decor and vertical line focus as well as bringing the trend of open floor plans and an emphasis on windows to increase light.
    -The Cathedral of Notre Dame is an example of French Gothic architecture
  • May 13, 1400

    The Renaissance 1400-1600

    The Renaissance 1400-1600
    -During the renaissance the beauty was the impact factor to design interiors.
    -Grand paintings and furniture, often with a lot of colour and expensive fabrics such as velvet, were used alongside marble floors to create these beautiful spaces.
    -A bedroom in the Palazzo Davanzati at Florence during the 15th century has tiled floors, richly painted walls and carved wood ceilings
  • Baroque 1590-1725 A.D.

    Baroque 1590-1725 A.D.
    -Flamboyance, grandeur and artistic excess were the focus of this era.
    -There was the popular use of stained glass, columns with twists, marble with colour, mirrors, chandeliers and painted ceilings
    -The first note of architects also working as interior designers was in ancient India around 1600AD
  • Rococo 1700 A.D.

    Rococo 1700 A.D.
    -A very elegant style utilizing flower based design work and the use of different materials such as tortoise shell and pearls on furniture.
    -They also included Asian porcelain in their home decor.
    This grand style is most often associated with the reign of Louis XV moving into that of Louis XVI.
  • Neoclassicism 1780-1880 A.D.

    Neoclassicism 1780-1880 A.D.
    -In the United States began about 1790 when the ancient Roman buildings were used as models for American architecture and interiors
    -Inspiration was from the ancient cultures of Greece and Rome.
    -This could be seen in the architecture of the time but also in the furniture which heavily used metals such as bronze and fabrics such as velvet, satin and silk.
  • Tropical 1800-Now

    Tropical 1800-Now
    -As the British empire grew into countries such as India and the West Indies they created homes with influence of both cultures.
    -This style was traditional but with the exoticism of the tropics.
    -Native craftsman began to recreate the British designs using local materials such as ebony, teak, mahogany, rattan, wicker, and animal hide.
    -They would often add their own flourishes such as the carved pineapple.
  • Victorian 1837-1901

    Victorian 1837-1901
    -Generally associated with Queen Victoria
    -Ornaments were the focal point of a room with all surfaces filled with objects the owner had collected.
    -The colour choices of walls followed a strict code depending on room type and always used colours which were placed beside or exactly opposite on the colour wheel.

    -Crystal Palace was built and set the standard for modern architecture.
  • Tuscan 1840’s-Now

    Tuscan 1840’s-Now
    -Influenced by the calm and nature of Tuscany in Italy the focus was very much of simplicity and elegance but with a touch of the luxury.
  • Arts and Crafts 1860-1910

    Arts and Crafts 1860-1910
    -As a movement to oppose industrialism people turned to traditional crafts to produce items of furniture and decoration.
    -Stemming from William Morris’ design firm, he designed textiles, wallpapers, furniture and small objects
    -He used dense overall pattern based on leaf, flower and bird forms
    -His followers used simple, well crafted furniture What time period does Elsie DeWolf, the first American Interior Designer fit in? [https://youtu.be/n4ZIPMH_BUI]
  • Rustic 1870’s-Now

    Rustic 1870’s-Now
    -Handcrafted furniture and large open rooms were the feature of this style.
    -Wooden beams and columns originally allowed rooms to be open and airy and are still sought-after features today.
    -Kamp Kill Kare Lodge on Lake Kora New York was built circa 1916-1920
    -Massive stone fireplaces, logs with their bark still intact and furniture made of tree branches
  • Art Nouveau 1890-1910 A.D.

    Art Nouveau 1890-1910 A.D.
    -Attempted to blend interiors with exterior natural elements and therefore much design took the form of curved lines and was inspired by plant life and flowers.
    -Originating in Belgium, it is characterized by the abandonment of all historical references which made for a truly original style in a long time
    -Dining room of Casa Batllo in Barcelona by Antonio Gaudi
  • Eclectic 1900s-Now

    Eclectic 1900s-Now
    -The eclectic style forced a rise in the interior design ideas as it created a need for people with an understanding of differing styles and interior design history.
    -The lavish interiors created for the wealthy increased demand for the style into the middle and lower classes.
    -Eclecticism means “ borrowing from many sources” and this was the leading characteristic of interior design
    -Combines colour and composition
  • Asian 1900’s-Now

    Asian 1900’s-Now
    -Known for it’s minimalist look the Asian style featured the use of natural materials and furniture such as mats, futons and screens.
    -While the Chinese ornaments were deep in design and colour, the Japanese were very basic and focused on function.
  • Modern and Mid-Century Modern 1918-1950

    Modern and Mid-Century Modern 1918-1950
    -Moving away from the typically ornate and somewhat cluttered home the modern style was focused on under-furnished spaces and bold primary colours.
    -Materials such as plastic, steel and laminate were heavily used.
    -Flooring would blend from one room to another, as would the walls which were usually left bare or painted white.
  • Country 1920-1970’s

    Country 1920-1970’s
    Inspired by farmhouses the style was very practical but with quality, and somewhat vintage furnishings.
  • Mediterranean 1920’s-Now

    Mediterranean 1920’s-Now
    -Textures such as plastered walls, terracotta and stone are used to recreate the feel of costal European countries.
    -Wrought iron, patterned tiles and aqua colours are used to give an extra element of style.
  • Art Deco 1920’s-1960’s

    Art Deco 1920’s-1960’s
    Art Deco is one of the most well known interior design styles and stood for modernity as well as elegance and glamour.
    -It is noted for clean lines, bold colour, angular shapes and stylised patterns such as zig-zags. Lavish ornaments were also used to give an extra sense of glamour.
    -It as named after the 1925 Paris Expostion of Decorative Arts
    -Art Deco bedroom by Paul Ruand (Paris 1933)
  • Mid-Century Modern 1930-1950

    Mid-Century Modern 1930-1950
    The aim was to bring the outdoors in and therefore big windows and open planned rooms were utilized. The style was relatively simple.
    -Image of Falling Water in Pittsburg Pennsylvania (1936-1939) designed by Frank Lloyd Wright
  • Minimalism 1980’s

    Minimalism 1980’s
    -Minimalism continued the trend of artists rejecting the lavish, highly-decorative styles of the past.
    -Decoration had become so intense that it had begun to undermine the function of the objects it touched.

    -Minimalists asked the question: How much can you strip away from an item — paintings, sculptures, buildings, furniture — without losing its essential purpose and identity?
  • Contemporary 1980’s-Now

    Contemporary 1980’s-Now
    -With neutral colours, furniture in basic materials such as wood and stainless steel and a minimal amount of ornaments the aim is for a clean and uncluttered feel.
    -Bright colours are sometimes used to contrast against the all round neutral feel