Focusing your own consciousness. Recognising what you really need. Assigning new value to things. That’s what minimalism is all about. In line with the motto “less is more”, increasing numbers of people are following their desire for clarity and order – also when it comes to designing their homes.
The real art of minimalism, however, is not owning as little as possible, but keeping the right things and showcasing them in masterful fashion. We explain how your home can become more minimalist without having to forego exciting eye-catchers and a personal touch.
The path to a minimalist home begins with a number of questions and some preconceptions. The aim is not to ban as much as possible from your four walls. This just destroys the chance of genuine well-being. We’re all attached to certain things which, viewed objectively, have actually very little use. What makes them so important to us is their emotional value, because they remind us of particular experiences or people. It is so very easy to forget the essentials when you, like the average German, possess over 10,000 different things. That is why it is so it’s important to set priorities and to focus on objects that have a special meaning for you or on timeless design classics that remain fashionable and fit in almost any room.
Minimalist homes tend to shun bright colour mixes, patterns and shapes. To prevent sensory overload, the emphasis is often on uniform, clean design rather than extravagant combinations. The topmost maxim is striving for purity of style. This in turn can be broken down into three central principles: clear shapes, plain materials and discreet colours.
In minimalist homes the design language is about reduction to the essentials, so that objects exist in their own right. The eye can rest on clear lines. When choosing furniture, you should look for plain items with geometric shapes or straight lines and no frills – a wing chair in Rococo style would just not be right. And when it comes to technical products in particular, clear design often translates into sophisticated functionality. In other words: not everything that looks plain is also simple. Instead, innovative, complex technology is integrated into a reduced, modern form that fulfils a purpose while also creating a visual highlight – like the Avoury One.
Exciting structures: When it comes to selecting materials, you should also go for a uniform look and place quality above quantity. If your focus is on less furniture and fewer accessories, you can opt for classy materials such as silk or cashmere and high-quality surfaces made of precious wood or marble. However, mixing different surface structures, materials and textiles can bring an optical counter-point to a clean, all-white look. An inspirational total look can be achieved where matt meets shiny, warm meets cool or smooth meets fluffy.
White is traditionally the dominant colour in minimalism. Its cool purity has a tidy appearance, makes rooms look larger and underscores the reduced furnishings. Other neutral colours like grey and black match the minimalist living style. You can use black to give new accents to white – by artfully placing a black sculpture on a white shelf, for example. It’s best to use the entire range of shades of a colour. This ensures optical depth.
If white, grey or black is too cool for you, then pale green shades or calming blue tones are also perfect for a purist home, as are elegant shades of caramel, beige right through to greige – a popular combination of grey and beige. The general rule of thumb is that a room only needs three colours: a maximum of two base colours and a third colour for accentuation. So, for large areas and walls, rather opt for neutral colours, whereas with individual furniture items or accessories you can be a little louder.
Despite the guidelines mentioned above, there are no upper limits for the number of furniture items that you should own when it comes to minimalism. At the end of the day, it’s up to the individual to choose their own style. While some minimalists consciously forego decoration, others make a statement using selected, striking objects. Whether it’s a modern sculpture, a plant or a particular artwork, your own preferences and personality can also be incorporated into a minimalist home in a number of ways.
Even if decoration is certainly allowed, it’s unnecessary to adorn every wall and surface. Instead, minimalism is about letting surfaces themselves create effect and not worrying that walls stay blank. Empty walls or floor areas can make a room appear larger, and they can provide a counterbalance to deco elements elsewhere, which then assume a greater presence.
Overall, the following applies: a pure basic decorative style is neither unimaginative nor boring, but is timeless and versatile. There is ample scope to add your own personal touch to a room by means of individual eye-catchers. In addition, reduced home decoration not only makes for more space, order and calm in a room, but also for greater clarity of mind.