SHAPE and LINE. Two very important elements of design.
The former refers to the 2D figure of things, how an object defines it space. Words like geometric, sinuous,& organic would all be appropriate ways to define shape…that is rather than simply stating something is square, round, or curvy. SHAPE is important in design…you can use it to define your space, to repeat an element of design (i.e. LINE), and to bring movement and interest into your home. Think of how important the element of SHAPE is…we learn the basic 2D shapes before we get into kindergarten. We use them as the basics for math (i.e. Pythagorean theorem, calculus). We build houses in reference to shape. Organic chemistry adopts the notion that hexagons actually mean something!!! It’s consideration is critical for an interesting home. The placement of your furniture and how the pieces fit into the space often begins with a floor plan, or a 2D representation of your space.
LINE is a fundamental element of design, as all elements, and therefore design, refer back to it. It technically refers to a pathway or a movement that begins and ends in a patterm…that is – straight, thick, thin, wavy, jagged, endless. LINE creates art. It can be simple and subdued, or loud and aggressive filled with emotion. Think of the kid in school who always pushed really hard on their pencil when he or she wrote…remember how dark and thick that line was? It was dramatic, eh? Conversely, the child who writes with a gentle pressure creates lines that are almost etherial, forcing you to pay attention to read between them.
Here, I’ve considered a SINUOUS SHAPE in our dining room head chairs. They are gently curved, making them ultra comfortable to sit in for long suppers. The legs curve out ever so, gracing the underside of the chair. The crystal chandelier is oblong shaped, and mimics both the shape of the chairs, and the curve in their legs. The chairs are custom upholstered in a vibrant yet subtle geometric fabric…unique for its purpose as I thought it was both playful and elegant (my husband thought they would look like “cougar chairs”…I did it anyway, because with decorating you have to take risks. It totally paid off. I’m still waiting for my “you were right”). I’ve embraced the LINE element of design with a THICK, SLIGHTLY CURVED leg on both my chair and table legs (I’ve also used REPETITION here for all of you ‘principles of design’ buffs!). You’ll notice that in the chandelier, there are curvy lines from the crystals and the frame, and these repeat the shape of the legs and the pattern of the fabric.
Don’t buy things just for function. Consider their form and their purpose. It shouldn’t be accidental how you fill your home. Consider how your decor will ‘play together’ and whether or not it is interesting, for you and your guests!