Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : July 21st 2013 Contents 6
Sunday Guardian www.guardian.co.tt July 21, 2013
UNITY. Always think of your space as a whole: Not as a collection
of vignettes or as individual pieces that you love just living in a space.
Every design decision must take the whole into consideration be-
cause everything affects, and has a relationship with, other items in
the room. The aim is to have everything looking and feeling as though
they belong to the same story. Colour is a great way to create that
perfect story. Select a colour scheme and work it relentlessly through-
out the space. The scheme will make the space appear to be a cohe-
sive whole. Be careful!! With extreme unity your space can appear to
be lifeless, predictable, unimaginative and boring. Conversely painting
every room in a different colour can be very unsettling and appear er-
ratic and unplanned. Create interest by selecting a palette with more
than one colour, or by using a limited palette but have varying shapes,
textures, sizes, styles or themes, or use patterns, for instance.
BALANCE. Balance is essentially an equitable positioning and
arrangement of items in the room. Balance gives a sense of calm,
comfort and completion to the space. To achieve this, you must con-
sider the even distribution of items according to their visual weight.
You can have symmetrical, asymmetrical and radial balance.
With SYMMETRICAL BALANCE items are arranged as mirror
images of each other; quite like the human body. So we feel an in-
stinctual comfort. Symmetrical balance is very formal and is most
often found in traditional interiors. It is pleasing to look at, but it can
be predictable and seem contrived. The eye rests to unthinkingly ap-
preciate the evenness of the space; not needing to examine, explore
or question because of the sameness. If it is overdone, symmetry can
lack visual stimulation.
ASYMMETRICAL BALANCE is more subtle and can be less in-
stinctive to achieve. Items can be different and can be less precisely
placed than items in symmetrical balance. Items can be balanced by
height, colour, shape, etc. The balance is achieved by matching the vi-
sual weight of the items. Because items are not exact replicas of each
other, there is a tension between them as they compete for attention.
This causes your eye to move across and explore the space. Asym-
metrical balance is more casual and spontaneous and can be more
engaging and dynamic.
RADIAL BALANCE is all about circles. Items are arranged
around a central element. The classical example is a round dining
table. Think of all the plate settings, chairs, dressings, etc of a round
table. Each sliver of the circle is in equilibrium with other segments.
FOCAL POINT. You may be asking how you can achieve a focal
point whilst striving to accomplish unity and harmony. All the design
literature and tutorage indicates that a room must have a focal point
for the design to work. Focal points essentially have to be in contrast
to everything around. It draws attention to itself and stands out. Your
focal point can be just about anything: an accent wall, wall art, an in-
teresting piece of furniture, a television, a fantastic view... The key is
that your focal point must seem to belong in the space and should
not suck all the attention. Other parts of the room should be per-
ceived as being supporting the focal point and not competing. A focal
point, therefore, will not be successful without being in unity, har-
mony and balance with the space. Your focal point draws you in and
you then appreciate everything else around it as your eye is pull
around the room.
These are just a few of the guidelines we should keep at the front
of mind when we decorate. Next week, I will share a few more. So do
not miss next week's copy of the WomanWise.
Very often you may set out
to decorate your room and
though you have very beauti-
ful things that you love, the
space does not seem as
pleasing as you envisioned it
would. As decorators, we are
guided by a few guidelines that we always keep
in focus when composing a space. I will share a
few of these secrets with you today.
Beyond Drapery Limited
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