Interior designing is an art that comprises of different elements. Just like there are elements of art, there are elements of interior design which help to differentiate, visualise and plan a space and it’s surroundings.

Architects and Interior Designers worldwide use these elements to visualize and conceptualize a layout. We all come in contact with these elements in our day to day life and any creative person with the right bend towards practical visualisation, sometimes without even realising it, utilises these elements to accentuate a particular decor. Remember when you helped choose where to lay a flowerpot or hang a picture so that the room looks bigger, better?

If you are somebody who is eager to design their room themselves – D.I.Y (do it yourself) fashion, then going through the following article will definitely help you to think clearly and definitively.

This blog will try to discuss the seven elements of interior design. For your reference we list out the seven answers first and then discuss it further point to point.

The Seven Elements of Interior Design are:-

1) Space

2) Lines

3) Form

4) Light

5) Color

6) Texture

7) Pattern



1) Space

Interior designing involves the process of recognising space and using that spacial awareness to plan, design and effectively designate the space with the right principles, art and elements for a pleasing and effective variation than the available one.

A space in interior designing can be any space for example a room that has walls, ceilings, pillars, floor. In interior designing, a place with height, width and length generally constitutes a space. A space with width and length would be a two dimensional space (the floor), and a space that constitutes the width, length as well as height constitutes a three dimensional space (3d space).

Negative Space and Postive Space –

A space element which is empty is referred to as Negative Space in interior Designing and a space which is filled with variables/stuff is defined as a Positive Space. In simple terms, this means that an empty room is a negative space while a space filled with furniture, curtains, paintings etc is referred to as a positive space.

image of an empty room
  Empty Room – Negative Space
image of a yellow lit room with decor elements
  Room with Decor Elements – Positive Space

2) Lines

A space for example a room is composed of pillars, windows, curtains, furniture and other forms. These forms are defined by lines. Lines help to guide your eye in a particular space by using different forms.

Lines are of three types –

  1. Horizontal Lines:- Horizontal Lines interior designers to expand the look of a space. For example a room which is otherwise small and congested, can be made to look wider than it actually is by using horizantal lines on walls. The eye follows these lines towards the end making it the wall longer, and it turn, the room bigger. One can find Horizontal lines in furniture items such as a dining table, a straight chair, a bed box.
  2. Vertical Lines:- Vertical lines help to define the height of a room. Using vertical lines along pillars, featured walls etc to manage an otherwise short heighted room is recommended. Suppose a ceiling is outstanding to look at with much carvings and colors and you want to accentuate that for all your visitors, than a nice trick is using pillars or windows with well-defined vertical lines that guide the eye to look upwards towards your designer ceiling.
  3. Dynamic Lines:- Dynamic lines are lines which do not come under the above two categories. Dynamic lines can be diagonal, curved or one that changed direction after being going along in a particular direction. A common example of dynamic lines is the staircase. The risers (height) and tread (flat area over which your foot is placed) of a stair are a zig-zag example of dynamic lines. Curved lines can be commonly found in furniture items such as a bed header, Designer tables and other such items. Dynamic lines can also be found in fabric patterns. Dynamic lines are found in places which require action for example the staircase, lines defined by office cubicles and the spaces among them, badminton racket and shuttle, a gymnasium, a vase.
image of a room with long windows
  Horizontal Lines in Windows, Tables, Ceiling – Spacious Look
image of a highlighted blue wall
  Vertical Featured Wall Lines – Direct eyes upwards
image of a room staircase
  Dynamic Lines – Room Staircase

3) Form

Lines help to define and shape forms. Forms usually implies shapes in space. Any object with shape as well as any space/room layout or outline has form. A shape with an outline in two dimensions only is not a form. Shapes in three dimensions only constitute a form.

Forms are of two types –

  1. Geometic Forms:- examples of such form is sqaure, circle, triangle and hard shapes and edges often looking man-made. For example having a hexagonal form in a table or having a curtain with triangular shapes.
  2. Natural/ Organic Forms:- Natural forms are organically flowing and not mathematically defined. They do not adhere to a particular pattern and shape. The are free-flowing for example plants, animals, puddles, clouds.
image of a bookshelf
  Rectangular Shelf with Clear Edges – Man Made Geometric Form
image of plant hanging from ceiling
  Plant – Organic Form

Another way of categorizing forms:-

  1. Open Forms:- Spaces in which you can walk into for example a room , gymnasium, washroom constitute open forms. You can see into these forms/ spaces.
  2. Closed Forms:- enclosed objects and spaces in which one cannot look into or through constitute closed forms. For example – Furniture, rugs, plants.
image of a office conference room
  Conference Room – Open Form
a cabinet image
  Cabinet – Closed Form

4) Light

Light plays one of the most important as well as effective part in accentuating a space. Objects become visible because of light. Targeting certain areas with proper lighting can really uplift a decor.

Natural light image
  Natural Light


Types of Light –

  1. Natural Light :- Naturally occuring light received in a particular space via windows, doors, through curtains etc lends an opportunity for an interior designer to capitalise upon. For example, designing an exterior so that the top of the balcony ceiling outside a room is a little indented indoors and then continuing this pattern to the height of the building allows natural light to pass through when all rooms are vertically aligned. Optimising on and utilising natural light different times of the day, is an important aspect of interior designing.
  2. Artificial Light :- In today’s world, we have become so accustomed to light and it’s vibrancy that even a day without it, makes us ineffective in completing our task. Artifical light is of three types:-
    1. Task Lighting :- As mentioned above, light has become impertive for us complete our work. Task light serves to provide light for specific tasks such as study table light, Sleeping light.
    2. Mood/ Ambient Lighting:– Mood Lighting Illiuminates the space and highlights it well. Ambient lighting used outside houses provides a sense of security by proving a proper and clear vision outside. Chandliers provide ample ambient lighting.
    3. Accent Lighting:- Accent Lighting highlights a particular space or object for decorative effects. For example, properly thrown light effect can make fountain wall, sculpture, painting etc prominent.
table lamp image
  Table lamp -Task Light
chandlier in a room image
  Uniformly Well-Lit Room – Ambient Light
lighted circluar decorative element image
  Highlighting a Decorative Element – Accent Light

5) Color

Colors define the vibrancy of a place. Choice of colors is very important part of interior designing. Using proper color combination is intrinsically related to how a room decor shall come across visually to it’s participants. Studies have shown that colors affect the psychology of a person. For example, red energises and green calms. One can chose a primary color as the prominent color in a room and then use a secondary to support it.

6) Texture

Texture is the perception of a surface in interior designing. I say, perception because it is not necessary that the texture should actually feel as it looks.

Types of textures –

  1. Actual:- An actual texture gives the actual feel of the object. For example a cemented wall feels rough on touching.
  2. Visual:- Visual texture gives the look of the object but does not feel like it upon touching. For example a wallpaper with the look of a cemented wall, feels smooth to touch.
image of a brick wall
  Brick Wall – Actual To Touch Rough Texture
image of a brick wallpaper
  Wallpaper with Brick Image – Visual Texture, Smooth to Touch

7) Pattern

A repititive design found in objects such as carpents, wallpapers, fabrics, curtains comes under pattern. A decorative element in any shape used again and again on a surface constitutes pattern but too much of a similar element hampers the design quotient of the space.

image of pillows with patterns
  Pillows with Patterns

A good interior designer utilises these 7 elements to conceptualise and effect the visual affect of a room. If you are designing your room yourself, these elements may start you off as a guiding structure.

Note: Always Hire a professional to help and prevent injury and loss.

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Color Psychology In Interior Design of a Restaurant

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2 Comments on “7 Elements of Interior Design

  1. You described beautifully…. very interesting….. 😍😍😍😍😍😍😍😍

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