What essentially started out as an art of decorating and embracing form and function has now become a profession that requires years of practice and expertise to master. Although now an important part of the construction, the profession of interior design is just about 100 years old. Earlier the interiors were put together instinctively as the construction proceeded. So then, what gave birth to interiors designing? Well, it is an offspring of complex societal and architectural developments that were a result of various industrial processes.
The pursuit of a functional design, infusion of personality in decor, effective use of space and user well being have all been the most potent driving force behind the surge of this form of designing. In the 17th and 18th century, interiors were always a concern of the homemakers. Sometimes, even architects would employ craftsmen and artisans to advise on the interior style of a home or maybe fully design it. These people made use of common sense, good taste and eye for detail, scale and proportion to design a space.
The foundation to recognise the subject as a profession was laid in 1930's which has evolved by leaps and bounds to come to the interiors as we know them. Even with the lack of proper recognition, monuments and heritage places from around the world are profound examples of the extremely sophisticated sense of style our ancestors had. One of the oldest known styles is the Elizabethan style that had its beginning around the late 1550's. Plentiful usage of Oakwood, velvet draperies, canopy beds and elaborate carvings were the distinguished features of this style.
Jacobean style which was somewhat influenced by the Puritans took the centre stage in interiors after the Elizabethan era. Simple and functional was the motto behind this style that saw an introduction of things like carpets, writing tables, chest of drawers and X-cross chairs. Fact for the day: did you know why the armless chairs were introduced? They were introduced in the 16th century as a chair for the ladies who often found it difficult to sit in compact chairs with their elaborate dresses. Yes and that is the same reason why most of the marriage halls and banquets have armless chairs.
Puritans were quite influential in design and laid emphasis on functionality over aesthetics and simplicity over ornamentation. The simplicity in design was first observed during this era. Then came the early colonial style that was influenced by the early settlers and featured log cabins and rustic touches in the decor. This phase was followed by the Victorian style which still has a large following owing to its 'hide all things ugly' motto. Windsor chairs and paintings were the signature elements of this style that has always been high on drama and opulence.
Images via Interior Joss, Fresnoleee, Hash Hook, HGTV Home