Understanding Scale and Pattern

bemjo says:
Love the article. So I have a long, narrow room (7'x 12') that I would like to appear wider. What ...... more
Love the article. So I have a long, narrow room (7'x 12') that I would like to appear wider. What flooring pattern should I use? This is a child's room so I would like to incorporate color if possible. Advice, please.
 
How spacious a room feels is as important as its actual dimensions. You can make a small room appear larger by choosing pale colors that reflect light and a large room feel smaller by choosing dark colors that absorb light. Similarly smaller rooms appear larger and larger rooms feel more intimate when you alter the scale of the elements in the room.

The flooring materials you select play a significant role in the perception of the scale. For example small, subtle patterns, such as 4-inch-square tiles in a pale cream shade, make a room appear more spacious than large, bold patterns, such as a 16-inch-square black-and-white checkerboard tile.

Strip flooring laid parallel to the longest wall moves the eye forward, while parquet squares and perpendicular planks retain the focus within the space. Irregular shapes in an otherwise symmetrical flooring installation have a tendency to stop the eye and draw attention to themselves. A border installed around wall-to-wall carpet, on the other hand, creates a sense of motion and space.

Using the same flooring throughout your home achieves a more spacious appearance because the eye perceives each space as connected and more expansive. If it is impractical to use the same flooring throughout, you can achieve a similar effect by choosing materials in the same color.

Similarly shiny surfaces reflect more light and lend a more spacious feel than honed surfaces, which absorb more light.

Making pattern work

Because pattern is a powerful design tool, it can be intimidating. Use these simple guidelines for choosing and mixing patterns to remove the guesswork:

  • Pattern has weight. To keep a room in balance, distribute pattern evenly around a room. The exception? You can place all the pattern in one part of the room to draw attention to the area, such as a seating area, as long as that cluster of pattern is balanced by weighty furnishings or architectural features across the room.
  • Pattern provides harmony. For a pleasing appearance select patterns within the same color family. The patterns don't all have to be the same color, but there should be a thread of continuity.
  • Keep scale in mind. Small prints work well in small spaces. Large patterns complement the scale of a large room.

 

Comments (1)
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bemjo wrote:

Love the article. So I have a long, narrow room (7'x 12') that I would like to appear wider. What flooring pattern should I use? This is a child's room so I would like to incorporate color if possible. Advice, please.

9/3/2010 10:21:58 AM Report Abuse
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