How to Decorate using Principles of Design- #3 Balance and Symmetry
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If you missed part one, go back and read it HERE! I talked about Principle of Design #1 & 2, Repetition with Variation and Texture/Pattern.
Principle of Design #3- Balance/ Symmetry
This one can make such an impact in interior design. When you think of balance, think of a fulcrum lever. The image below is by Andrew Loomis all about design in drawing. I know it’s not interior design, but bear with me here and take a look.
Andrew Loomis explains the idea of the fulcrum lever so well. In the case of the drawings, the items need to be in balance within the picture frame. In interior design, the items need to be in balance within and in reference to the walls. To sum it up, the items in an interior design don’t need to be the same objects, they just need to appear to be in balance.
Let’s use the photo above as an example. It has bookcases on both sides of the doorway and they feel equal and balanced because they are the same on both sides. Then come more to the foreground. One wall (with the window) holds a small side table and chair, the opposite wall a more heavy dresser. It feels balanced because of two small items on one side and one large item on the other.
Emily Henderson does a great job with balance in her living room. The fireplace and bookcases are symmetrical and balanced. Next the chaise and table on the left wall and on the opposite wall the sideboard cabinet balances it out. A little closer to the foreground, the sofa and the accent chairs across from it are in balance. Visually, both sides of the interior feel like equal weights.
Symmetry is a little more straight forward. If you put a line down the middle of a room, it would look the same on both sides. A bedroom is a great place to use symmetry because it can make a space feel calm and relaxing. In the photo above, it’s almost identical on both sides, except for the items on the night stands. You will notice the items are different, yet they have the same visual weight and feel balanced.
This library is another great use of symmetry. The space feels balanced on both sides. If you were to stand in a different location, for example either adjacent wall, and look at the room from that vantage point it would still feel balanced. A heavy couch on one side and two smaller chairs on the other with the tables in the middle.
Here is a great example of both balance and symmetry! This is a design by Lauren Liess. There is symmetry in the windows next to the fireplace, the sofas, the chairs. Balance comes in with the side tables in the foreground. They are different, yet appear to be in balance. The wall of french doors on the right of the photo is balanced out by the sideboard and art on the left side of the photo.
Design Principle #3- Balance/Symmetry
In interior design, the items need to be in balance within and in reference to the walls.
The items in an interior design don’t need to be the same objects, they just need to appear to be in balance. Imagine a fulcrum lever.
When using symmetry in a room, if you put a line down the middle of a room, it would look the same on both sides.
Symmetry is a great way to make a space feel both balanced and calm and relaxing.