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The Different Types of Home Design

When moving into your first home or apartment after college it can be a daunting task when it comes to deciding how you are going to decorate your home. The reason it can be very challenging is that most people, when decorating their first home or apartment, want to show off their unique style and taste and it can be difficult deciding what your personal taste is. Also, it can be difficult to decide whether to stick with one theme or combine different interior design styles together. The three most popular types of interior design styles are Modern/Contemporary, which includes modern furniture and modern design furniture, Romantic, and French. Most people like to choose one or a combination of two or all three of these styles for their home decoration.

The Modern/Contemporary style is marked by a minimalist approach to design. Most people who prefer the Contemporary look prefer to have a home that appears to have no clutter and therefore very little furniture. The look also uses clean lines and very defined pieces of furniture in its style. The colors that are usually associated with this kind of style are black and white, however, nowadays it seems that bright, bold colors can also be part of the contemporary design, and a bright yellow would be an example.

The French style is all about the rustic, country look. A lot of the French style has bright, detailed furniture that also looks antique. Distressed furniture pieces are also a part of the French style. It is all about a natural look. The colors that are normally associated with this kind of style are light and soft colors, like a taupe or a light green color. Also, the flooring in the French style is often wood or tile that looks like it has been worn.

The Romantic style is all about deep colors, big comfortable furniture, and rooms that feel cozy and intimate. This kind of design also encourages less lighting in all of the rooms for a more intimate feel in each room. Also, the fabrics used in the Romantic style need to be bold in color or design. As far as colors, the Romantic look is supposed to look like it sounds, passionate with deep tones like reds, oranges, and purple. Finally, many who prefer the Romantic style also prefer to have carpet in as many rooms as possible to give the home a more intimate and cozy feeling.

It is important to remember that these are just the three major types of interior design styles. There are plenty of other options that are available to you. And, if you are not planning on redoing your entire house from top to bottom, it is possible to still have these styles in your home without painting all of the walls and putting in all new floors. It is also important to remember that it is your home and your kind of style that will make the home truly yours, so don't be afraid to experiment or pair different styles together.

Modern Home Plans - Having a New Home Designed

Modern home plans are available for those looking to purchase a new home that reflects the latest in architectural house designs. There are many companies that can work with you to help design a modern home based on contemporary styles and layouts. Many firms offer pre designed plans that can be changed to accommodate individual tastes and preferences. There is a huge range of plans available online and from architectural companies - your task is sorting through all the various elements until you can narrow down a list of crucial components to be incorporated into your plan.

A few questions you will need to answer will include: how many bedrooms, whether or not to have a family room, if a separate study room is valuable, and if internal garage access will be important. Plans come in both 2D and 3D versions for you to review before building begins. You will want to go over these with a fine toothed comb, as changes are much easier to make on the blue prints then once actually constructed on the ground.

The building site also needs to be taken into consideration for school districts, noise levels, and neighbours. Different sites will also require different types of permits at different prices. Planning a new home can be challenging as it is a big investment, so the new home should meet all of your specifications. Depending on what stage of life you are at may also indicate the style of design you need to consider. If you are looking at building a family home for example, then storage space for recreational gear such as bikes, boats and tents should be considered, as should backyard space for outdoor activities.

It is wise to speak to your architect about potential roadblocks in the project and about any other extras that are likely to be added to your bottom line figure. You may also want to discuss anything that your architect may think is a better design choice. Given their professional experience in house designing, it can be helpful to hear why certain elements will and will not work as you may envision. Your architect will be able to show you 3D walk through plans too. This can be useful exercise to examine sun patterns at different times of day and get a feel for the scale of your future modern home.

Modern home plans vary greatly, but tend to lean towards a more minimalist feel. Many people feel that contemporary modern homes are more aesthetically pleasing than traditional styles. New house designers today tend to make use of large glass windows for lots of natural light, open floor plans, and living areas that flow into one another. Having a new house designed is certainly an exciting time; ensure you view a wide range of styles and designer plans before you commit to print your future home.

Organizing Interior of Your Minimalist Home

Decorating your home will be a great investment for your entire family's comfort and convenience. Especially when you decor your home in a minimalist design, you should get the best decoration so you will bring the real minimalist touch into your home. Since the minimalist design is one most favorites design today, this kind of house will be the answer for the needs of the community who wanted a house that is simple but can be maximized.

This design will be the best solution for your limited land and space especially when you live in metropolitan city. You should get the right deal of its interior and exterior design to get the large touch. If you deal with these conditions, you can start by avoiding the permanent divider for your room. This permanent divider will give a narrow touch to your room. You can start to use the divider that is characterized as temporary and accessories. You can choose the one that is clean, firm, without a profile, and minimal geometric shapes.

In addition, if you do not want to use the divider, you can organize your home with carpet. You can choose the one that has a solid color that makes your room looks large and fresh. Instead of carpet you can also add with some additional accessories such as accessories, for example painting. You can choose the frame that has compositions and simple shape without carving or profile. You also need to be aware of your furniture choice. It is highly recommended that you select the furniture that is simple with no profile and carvings with dark colors, like dark chocolate.

Here are some simple steps that you can do if you want to get a minimalist decoration nowadays. Decorating your interior design in modern and minimalist house needs to be done very carefully indeed because the limitation of existing space brings a narrow sense.

Uses of Home Design Software

One of the best things that you can invest in when you go to design a home is home design software. There are a plethora of options that you can choose from when it comes to home design software. Some of these options are free where as others you will need to pay for. The have many options that are included in the software and some of these can even do the designs that you would like in 3D. You will be able to do a test run on what it is that you want to do to your home and see how it would look before you actually went and did what it is that you were planning to do. You can have fun and experiment with the different ideas and styles that are out there. There are also some options that would let you decide on the exterior as well as the landscaping design.

Remember this is something that you can use if you are going to build a home or if you are simply going to remodel your current one. This means that you can go from the ground up with the designs and create the home of your dreams without the need of someone telling you what they have available and what it is that they can do for you. You will be able to set dimensions, create locations and sizes of bathrooms as well as determine how you will put everything together.

When you are focusing on the outside of the home you need to take into consideration the lay of the land as well as where utilities and other options will be coming in. There are quite a few different things that you will need to account for when building and planning your home.

The last things you will want to plan are things such as colors as well as interior designs. You can use your home design software to aid you in determining how furniture should be arranged as well as where you should place wall hangings and different items in the home that will work as accents to create the aesthetics. Think of drapes as well as window treatments that you will use in order to allow you to best create the look and feel that you want in your home once the construction is complete. This software will help you to work out every last detail so as to finish and get everything you want into your home.

Minimalist Home Designs

Minimalist Home Designs



What Is a Minimalist Home?

Many people have an impression of a minimalist home as a mostly white, bland space with very little furniture and a not very welcoming feel. But a truly minimal home can also be comfortable and reflect something of the owner's character with carefully selected statement decorations. Minimalist living is not about removing comfort and personality from a space but about injecting a calm, stress-free atmosphere by removing all clutter and storing the majority of necessary items out of sight.

As with all styles of decorating and living, there are different levels of minimalism that work for different people but every minimal home will have some of these common elements:

Clear surfaces - the majority of visible flat surfaces will be clear of any items. There may be a few open bookcases and the kitchen surfaces may contain a few items that are impractical to store away such as the kettle and toaster, but, in general, even the most frequently used items will have an allotted storage space inside a cupboard or drawer.

Simple Furniture - rooms will only contain essential furniture and it will all be of a simple, elegant design, without any fancy decorative touches. Soft furnishings will be in neutral, or pale, muted colours and there will be no patterns in sight.

Simple Window Treatments - a minimal room may have curtains but they will be a plain feature of the room (no tie-backs, pelmets or fancy rails) but more often the windows will be unadorned or have just a simple blind for privacy.

Plain Neutral or Muted Colours - one of the ways of creating the calm atmosphere of a minimalist room is to use neutral and soft, muted colours only. This will not create a bland or cold room if combined with some textural elements in the furniture or flooring. There will be a distinct absence of any patterns however subtle.

Personal Touches - it is important for a home to reflect something of the character of the owner and no one would wish to live in a completely impersonal space so a few carefully chosen items will be on display; maybe an elegant Scandinavian vase on the window ledge or a simply framed family photo on the coffee table.

Decoration - good paintings often play an important part in the design of a minimalist space; they enable colour, texture and vibrancy to be added to a room without encroaching on the physical space. They also reflect the personality of the owner and bring character to the room to prevent it from seeming too bland.

Abundant storage space - this is the most essential element in any minimalist home, without which a minimal lifestyle would be impossible. The storage space should be abundant but also well organised with a defined space for every item that needs to be stored away.

To many of us it may seem like an impossible ideal to live in a minimalist home but it is possible to start to move towards that calmer and more serene way of living by taking one step at a time. Start by de-cluttering and creating plenty of storage cupboards and drawers. Attempt to make the easiest rooms minimal first - those that already have the least amount of furniture and clutter and discard all but the most essential pieces of furniture. Next, redecorate in neutral colours and you are already nearly there.

The act of redecorating a room will involve removing almost everything from the room so it is then simply a matter of resisting the temptation to put everything back again. Review every item again, even if you think you have already discarded everything possible there is always the opportunity to remove even more stuff. Try to ensure that all flat surfaces are completely clear and store away the essential items you have kept in their pre-allocated space in the storage cupboards. It is vital that a minimalist home has plenty of good, well-organised storage space from which items are easily accessible.

Design Styles, Minimalistic Interior Design

In this age of less equals more, minimalism, has found a growing population of admirers. While not everyone is ready to "let go" of their materialistic tendencies and embrace an ideology that promotes space and empty areas as desirable interior design elements, many do. If you're toying with the idea of simplifying your life and your interior design scheme, but aren't ready to sell the Chippendale yet, then design styles featuring minimalistic interior design elements can be added to an existing decor very sparingly (pun intended).

For instance, let's consider an average home that contains: two bedrooms, two baths, a living room, a dining area, a kitchen and maybe a den. In the "average" home that is already decorated in one of the more typical design schools, you'd have well over a hundred items of furniture inside, and usually a lot more. In a minimalist house, on the other hand, you'd have no more than twenty-five and probably less. Since the extremes between how most of us live and the minimalist ideal decor are so very far apart from one another, compromise seems a wise course of action.

In an ideal minimalist home, the living room would have a simple, flat bench, a rug and maybe a lamp. No television set, no coffee table, no chairs and no excessive materialism would be allowed in the space. In a compromised minimalist environment, however, you could winnow out some of the excess furniture and banish the clutter gathering bits. It would not, of course, be purely minimalist but it would be headed in the direction of it.

Design ideas incorporating minimalistic interior design elements can be added to existing homes and incorporated into emerging decors with ease. In fact, the biggest problem with this school of decorating is working too hard at it.

Minimalist Architecture For New Home Designs

If you are looking for modern house designs especially designed for style and functionality, then choosing Minimalist house designs and plans is right for you. It makes use of clean, geometric lines to create a sleek look. This is great for house design with limited area space. You will be able to make full use of all the space. It is simple, stylish and effective. To achieve a full minimalist effect, most houses use multiple function elements. The heater, for example, could be directly installed in the floors or walls.

Lighting is also very important when it comes to minimalist architecture. It makes use of only high quality lights, because the idea is to create a simple effect. Also, the colours black and white are very common. They are usually the basic colour of minimalist design houses. Sometimes, dark wood is also used for the floors. The roofs are usually flat, unlike regular houses. This is to further create a simple effect. It pays attention to the cleanliness of the joints of the walls as well. This is another reason why minimalist design makes use of flat roofs.

Pops of colour brighten the minimalist designed house. Bright colours like red, yellow and orange provide an interesting and aesthetically pleasing contrast to the overall design of the house. They usually take the form of vases, artworks, or simple pieces of display furniture.

If you want to know more about the latest in home design, it would be best to consult new home builders. They can design homes for you in any style you want. They can easily make use of the minimalist design. You can look at their various house designs and plans to see which one works for you. You can also look at a few house design and plan, for some inspiration. You can easily get your dream minimalist house and land package with the help of a good, reliable home builder.

Minimalist Interior Design For the Modern Home

A minimalist interior design scheme doesn't need to be stark and cold!

Modern minimalist designs are not the old, harsh decor of years ago. The new look for minimalist interior design is a softer look, more personal and easier to live with. Yes, you can have a real life, or even kids, and go for a minimalist look in your home!

It is true that you do really need to be a certain kind of person to get on well with a minimalist scheme - messy people need not apply! But seriously ... if you find it easy to stay neat and tidy, are very organised and hate clutter in any form, this is very likely a look that will work for you.

I love the look of a minimalist interior design scheme. But I have come to realise it just isn't for me! If you do struggle to keep on top of mess or clutter, if you like your knick-knacks and collections, or just enjoy being surrounded by all your favourite possessions, this probably isn't a look you can live comfortably with...

Keeping your house 'spick and span' and clutter free can be hard work, there's no two ways about it. But your reward will be worth it! A minimalist interior design scheme is a very simple, relaxing style, which will bring an air of real tranquillity to your home - but it has a great, cutting-edge, contemporary feel too!

Walls and Color

Of course, white has got to be the ultimate color for any self-respecting minimalist scheme.

But, you can opt for a softer look, by choosing warm neutrals and colors from nature. Try stone, beige, taupe, brown and even green. Your base colors should be 'pale and interesting' - but go for a splash of a bolder color for accents.

Your accents can be as little or as much as you like. Try a vase, or cushions for quite a subtle introduction to color, or a whole wall or sofa, for a bigger statement!

Only choose one color, or color group, for your accent color. Bright red is a good choice, or any other bright color. As an alternative, just choose a darker natural tone - a deep green or brown will always work well.


Choose something simple and classy for your minimalist interior design look.

Plain, modern-looking furniture is ideal - in natural wood (especially dark wood), dark leather, white or bright colors, or chrome, glass, mirror and stainless steel.

Low level furniture will help with the modern look and minimalist feel in your room, as it is much less bulky!

Floors and Windows

Less is more with a minimalist style. Choose plain, wooden floors for a simple effect. But don't forget to add a rug, for live-ability and style.

Try to keep your window treatments simple too. Bare windows, shutters and blinds will give a very minimal look, but you might feel happier softening up the look a touch. Choose simple, neutral curtains or white floaty voiles, for an easy look.


Naturally, accessories are not a major part of a modern minimalist look. But don't just sweep the shelves bare...! By all means clear out the clutter, and have a god sort out, but remember that your minimalist interior design look does need a few, well-chosen, carefully positioned accessories, to complete the look, and make your house into a home.

One large, very striking picture, painting or wall hanging will make a better statement than several smaller ones. Choose something you really love, and are proud to display as large as life in your home.

This picture will probably set the choice of accent color for the rest of your accessories - cushions, vases, candlesticks and lamps.

Limit yourself to only 1 or 2 accessories on each display surface. If you have special treasures you can put these into storage for a while, and display them in rotation.

Of course, managing your storage will be another big part of making a minimalist interior design scheme successful in your home, so think very carefully about what you need in your room, where you need it and how you will use it, before you invest in your storage solutions.

Maintaining a successful minimalist interior design scheme will take a little more work on your part. But the results are very satisfying - a beautiful, clean and tidy room, with a tranquil, soothing air - exactly the kind of room you want to relax into when you come home after a hard day...!

Victorian-Style Home Design Ideas

These days, most people believe that 'simple is better'. You may notice that most houses built today have minimalist style. As a result, we often find that one house is not so different from the other. If you are the type of person with quite an eccentric taste, you might not like the idea of minimalism. You will likely to expect something different, especially when you are designing your house. Instead of following the trend of using modern, minimalistic home design ideas, you probably would like to give Victorian style a try. Because of its complexity, people tend to avoid designing their house in this manner. Therefore, you can be confident that your house will be unique and one of a kind.

This unique home design idea emphasizes on the use of beautiful and sophisticated decorative pieces as well as furniture pieces. Just as the name suggests, this style is inspired by the architectural style commonly utilized during the era of Queen Victoria of England. The houses and buildings built during that period were elegant and luxurious, due to the choice of furniture and colors. The one thing that you have to keep in mind is that building a Victorian-style house might cost you a large sum of money. Even so, the result will not disappoint you. If, however, you are running on a limited budget, you can just take some important aspects of this style to decorate your house. Nowadays, there are also lots of second-hand Victorian-inspired furniture pieces that you can find with relatively cheap price and good quality.

The walls of a Victorian-style house need to be painted in bold colors. Try using dark yet lively colors such as ruby or sapphire. You can also use wallpapers with floral motifs. Choose wallpapers with smaller patterns if your house is small, so that it won't appear smaller than it really is. Opt for wood flooring and cover with luxurious carpet. For the curtains, use materials such as velvet or brocade for that Victorian look. And to decorate, you can put antique figurines, candles, flowers, or oriental dolls in a display cupboard or on a table.

Remember that Victorian style is all about uniqueness and being different. This home design idea is not just for anyone. You need to be artistic and creative when it comes to decorating your house and the house that you have always dreamed of is yours.

Wrought Iron Patio Furniture Sets For Minimalist Home Design

These days, people are now concerned with space. As much as possible, they would like to spend lesser space particularly in their home area. This is why minimalist home design has been one of the top design choices of people with the help wrought iron patio furniture sets.

The concept of minimalist came from the term minimal or minimum. In home design, people would like to remove unnecessary elements to give an effect of lightness and cleanliness in homes. And aside from Zen inspired furniture, wrought iron patio furniture sets has the ability to bring this minimalist feel on your home.

Why does this type of furniture has this capability? First of all, they are made from thin pieces of iron material. This means that this furniture will offer you mere frames. Thus, it will give the minimalist feel in your home. This type of furniture also comes in different types that will be useful on your patio area.

The first type of furniture that you will get is the seating options for your patio. There are seats where you can have your coffee and with coffee tables that can be good places where you can hangout with your guests. Since they look like frames, you will not really feel that the furniture are there in your home.

You will find different inclusions in getting wrought iron patio furniture sets like a magazine rack. Again these, magazine racks made from this material looks very simple but can still be a good item to keep your magazines at your covered patio. These frames will be good pieces of furniture to attract the attention of your guests who will visit your home.

Finally, you will find some wrought iron patio furniture sets that include garden racks. These are perfect for you if you want to have an item where you can keep your beautiful flowers in small pots like bonsais. You will find them as good display items that will make your home looking beautiful than what it used to be.

So if you are all about space and would like to apply the beauty of minimalist home design, you just need to get these wrought iron patio furniture sets for your home and get its modern and minimalist feel right on your patio. This will definitely improve the overall look of your home and make it more functional in terms of getting the space that you want.

Minimalist Home Interior

Minimalist home design, with very little and simple furniture, has impressed many people. Many a time the way we value our home, the way we furnish and decorate a home with carefully selected decoration, reflects the character of the owner. Though it looks simple, minimalist home design can also be comfortable, it is not about removing personality and comfort from your home, however, minimalist home design presents a stress-free environment by storing the majority of necessary items out of sight and removing all clutter, arranging the pieces of furniture and offer them a simplistic aspect, making them both spectacular and functional. Minimalist home interior enhances your overall home appearance without wasting so much money and space.

If you are kind of person with a minimalist sense of style, you can have a serene and organized living room, for example. You can make things a lot simpler, if you can decorate your home with minimalist viewpoint and you will feel much more comfortable and peaceful with your environment. Why minimalism has become so successful and very popular because it removes all the unnecessary elements.

In order to create a simple model, you can use technology; you can create a high quality and an innovative model on the computer. You can create a beauty design by using basic shape and combining different color and textures when drawing, so that you can create neat and clean product.

The advantages of minimalism

  • More elegance and attractive. Your simple and elegant pieces of furniture are only surrounded by clear uncluttered space. Rooms will only contain essential furniture.
  • Easier to clean. Since your floors are free from clutter, it is much easier to Hoover and dust. You don't have to move so many object before you can clean them.
  • More stress-free life. Removing all clutter and neatly storing the majority of necessary items out of sight, in their own allotted space, will make them easy to find when needed. No more rushing time.

Minimalism is great for home with limited area space, where you can make full use of all the space; especially it is designed for functionality and style. You can consult your designer or home builder about the latest design. You can add your own concept, or maybe you can ask the opinion of your family member to add personal touch. Or you can combine the different concepts to see which one works for you.

Minimalist Home Designs

Minimalist home designs are often chosen by house owners these days to refurbish or build their properties, because their simple and seamless style makes their abode more comfortable and relaxing. Minimalist design is influenced by the Japanese art elements of clean lines and open spaces. It doesn't support elaborate features, clutter, and unnecessary items that take up space.

If you'd like to apply this principle on your own house's architecture, you have to focus on being simple and keeping things at their most natural state. You should choose a flatter roof and more open spaces. Try avoiding a roof structure that has a steep pitch. For your interior house design, if you need to have a private space, try avoiding permanent walls and use a shoji or a sliding door, instead. In this way, you can still have an open space when you don't need an enclosed area.

Flooring should go with the simple and natural theme. Wood is often the choice for this style. You can still have stone tiles, but refrain from the shiny types. Muted stone tiles in earth colors would be best.

Wood beams, walls, and countertops should be left in their barest look. If the item is of wood material, the most you should do is have it stained to bring out the natural beauty of the wood. Stone countertops should just be polished also to bring out the grains and specks of the material. Metal items should also just be polished and not painted.

Minimalist home designs should have an overall look that's spotless and effortless. When choosing paint for the walls, you can still veer away from white, though. But you have to stay with the neutral shades like beige. The strongest color you can pick is a pale shade of terra cotta. The guideline in selecting colors for this type of design is to remain creating the feel of open spaces. Colors that make an area feel enclosed should be avoided. The idea is for your home to be in harmony with nature. You can add mirror doors for a modern twist, if you wish.

Windows are also crucial in creating open spaces in minimalist house designs. Large sliding windows are ideal. If you need to use blinds, select those made of bamboo or wood or those that are of neutral color. If you prefer to use curtains, don't use ones with floral or ornate prints. Choose those with sheer materials, preferably of white, beige, sand, and other neutral hues.

These are just some ideas to help you have your own home in the minimalist look that you want. You can add in your own concepts to add personal touches. Simply keep in mind about open spaces and being one with nature and you won't go wrong.

Why Choose a Minimalist Web Design?

Most advice on web design will tell the reader that less is more when it comes to the web, some simply saying that minimalism is the current fashion while others describe it as an essential aesthetic principle. But choosing a minimalist web design can often seem like an unfair trade-off between all the content and features you want to include and adherence to a particular look. So what are the advantages of a minimalist web design and how should you create a look that is clean and simple but still expresses personality?

  • One good idea is better than ten: Letting one visual or textual feature dominate your web design can create a much greater impact on your viewer than a site cluttered with different images and messages. Deciding what to put on the all important home page in your website design can be difficult as the space is generally limited even if you don't choose to stick to minimalist aesthetics.

Practising restraint, however, can be the best way to produce a successful website design. The website designs users find most enticing usually have one large attractive feature on the home page, in the form of a highly defined image, a carefully worded banner or an easily identifiable call to action. Minimalist web designs that use this technique have a well defined focus and communicate their message to the viewer quickly and effectively.

  • Minimalism doesn't have to be boring:The strict definition of minimalism is design stripped of extraneous aesthetic qualities to focus on the function of an object rather than a decorative form. However, minimalism can be interpreted in a number of different ways, and there is no need to ignore aesthetic concerns altogether. The function of most website designs is in fact to connect with a human being through an online interface, and this is best done through attractive visual features.

Minimalist web design places emphasis on the aspects of the site that appeal to the viewer the most, whether these are emotive images or beautiful typography. Many successful websites combine striking visual features with a generous use of white space to make interesting, engaging and easily understandable minimalist designs.

  • Simple web designs send complex messages:Web designs are created to communicate something, or sometimes quite a lot of related things, to the viewer. If you have many different messages to communicate to your audience, it could seem to make sense to use a variety of different elements to do it.

In fact, complex web designs are just about as successful as complex billboards that cannot be read from a distance or while driving at a high speed. Minimalist designs, on the other hand can make a significant impact on the reader and are more capable of conveying complex messages for the viewer to consider later.

Minimalist Interior Design - Below the Surface


Minimalist interior design came about as a direct result of the Minimalist art movement which first surfaced in the 1950s in New York and dominated the art world through the 1950s and 1960s. The art movement came from the overarching movement of the time, Modernism. This is why the terms Modernism and Minimalism are often used almost interchangeably when discussing design. While it is accurate to say that a minimal approach is a modern one, the reverse is not always true. 

Minimalist art is self-contained art; external references and emotion are avoided. Interior designers who work with minimalism tend to broadly follow this ideal. The approach to minimalism in interior design is less rigorous than it is in the art world. This is to be expected as a building's interior has to serve a function beyond the aesthetic--it has to be conducive to the act and to the art of living.

There are several distinct objectives within minimalist interior design and the task of the designer is to make these rationales come together as seamlessly as possible. This is no easy task and involves a lot more than knocking down a couple of non-supporting walls and painting everything white.

The Spiritual

The first objective is the spiritual. Minimalist interiors are designed to facilitate a sense of calm and peace. People's surroundings have a huge impact on the way that they feel and consequently act. To this end colors tend to be extremely pale or white so as not to induce an emotional response. The use of whites and pastels on walls also maximizes the reflection of light giving a soft, diffuse illumination that is not harsh or uncomfortable. The minimalist interior designer uses light to define the forms and the spaces where other designers would use materials and finishes. 

Open plan designs are favored as this type of architecture promotes a calm, detached feeling. Patterns and textures are generally not used unless they are essential to an object's function. An unfinished brick wall could easily be incorporated into minimalist design as the texture is directly related to its function, but wallpaper with an image of bricks would be about as anti-minimalist as it is possible to be. 

The Practical

The second objective is the practical. Multi-purpose objects are important in this regard. The floor that is also a radiator, windows arranged for the gathering of heat as well as light, and even the sofa that converts to a bed all follow the minimalist ideal. This multi-purposing ethos also extends to the use of spaces within the home. A committed minimalist will not be happy until every space serves at least two distinct functions.

Energy Efficiency

Thirty years ago this third objective would have been a subset of the practical. The importance of energy conservation in the light of recent discoveries regarding climate change and potential fuel scarcities means that energy efficiency is now an essential part of minimalist design. In fact it could be argued that it is impossible for a home to be considered an example of minimalist design without a serious attempt at energy conservation. At the very least the house should be insulated and all windows double- or triple-glazed. A purist would argue that the minimalist needs to go beyond these standard measures and look at non-fossil fuel options such as geothermal heating or solar panels.

If a designer meets these three objectives, the design produced would undoubtedly be a minimalist one.

Concluding thought

Of course many will slap a coat of white paint on the walls, rip some carpets up, and put a few openings in walls and call it a minimalist design, but for a design to be truly minimalist a bottom-up approach is needed. The functioning of the home, spiritually, practically, and energy-efficiently, will to a very large extent dictate its appearance. This is true minimalism and it comes from below the surface.

Create a Minimalist Home

In trying to obtain a minimalist home, it doesn't have to be devoid of life. It will bring in more comfort, light and life. In clearing away all the clutter we so often accumulate over time we gain more peace of mind, clarity in our thinking and the ability to get more done with less distractions.

Start with one room at a time. Focus on one room and make that your calming center. By focusing on one room it will give you the inspiration to move onto the next. Trying to do the entire house or apartment usually ends up becoming very overwhelming and nothing gets done.

Examine the furniture. In trying to minimize your surroundings, see which pieces can be sacrificed without sacrificing your comfort. The less furniture the better. It will open up the room and bring in much more light. Starting with something as simple as a coffee table, and moving from there is often the best way to go.

Whether you are looking at the furniture or anything else in the room, only stick with the essentials. If it is something you can live without, get rid of it. Clean away anything that isn't an essential item, you can always add in later. Anything bulky, cluttered, or non-essential should be removed. You can have a yard sale, give to charitable organizations that might be in need of what you have just striped away.

Clear away anything and everything from the floor. Aside from your furniture, nothing should be cluttering or laying on the floor. Clear it, trash it, give it away, or find a new home for it. Nothing should be stacked, or piled on the floor.

Clean all your flat surfaces. Unless it is essential in being there, such as in your kitchen (which should be stripped down as well to only the bare essentials) then once again, clear it away, trash it, give it away and clean it. Decorating can be done later.

As mentioned above, anything cleared away should have a place or given away. Keeping books, DVD's, CD's etc should have a place. Utilize your drawers and cabinets but not to overflowing since that itself will cause a clutter problem. Except for a few decorations and not entire collections of things (I have a husband who has this clutter problem) all things should have a home.

Cleaning up your walls and placing a few simple pieces of artwork will create an elegant but open and airy feel to your home. This also goes for your windows as well. Choose simple and clean window treatments like wooden blinds, or simple solid colored or print designs.

In decorating your home, keep it as simple as a vase of flowers, or some potted plants. You can also add a splash of color in accenting your home such as red or yellow. An example of this would be the pillows used for your couch, or any chairs you might have. It gives the place energy and life.

Examine your new look, sit back, relax and feel proud of yourself in decluttering your home which will in turn declutter other parts of your life as well.