During the European Renaissance that sprang out of Italy, neoclassical style was invigoratingly adopted as the holy grail of design, expression and culture. It has always held great affection from the majority of people as it harks back to the days of ancient Greece. That period of history has been romanticized many times over and for good reason. You only need to take a look at the neoclassical design for homes to see why. There is a deep love for sculpture and especially those of human beings. Our emotions and desires, captured in stone and frozen in time. You will also see natural materials around the house, both made by mother earth and wildlife. The timeless elegance of this style is difficult to pull off correctly but with a little knowledge, you can make a huge entrance onto the neoclassical scene.
Walking on a work of art
The ancient Greeks knew how to make a home lavish beyond what we consider the same standard now. One of the things they celebrated was flooring. To turn a floor from rough ground to something smooth and supportive, was not just a structural and design feat, but one of pure art. You can have a neoclassical floor if you incorporate ceramic tiles in a mosaic design. The small squares can be in the classic diamond and design style or just plain. It’s better to make a design of some kind as this will make it obvious, the floor is a mosaic. This should be something that represents the style in good steads, such as a Greek figure or perhaps a flower maze of some kind.
You can also use porcelain tiles if you would like something brighter as this will shine the line around the room more effectively than ceramic. Porcelain is more expensive, but it’s a purer material, meaning the colors will be more vivid. This type of flooring should be in the foyer so it is one of the first things guests see but the first thing they touch with their body. They will instantly know, they are in a home where classic art is held in high prestige.
The most regal
Of all the colors in the world, blue is by far the most regal. The ancient Greeks knew this and that’s why they created blue linen which was to cover benches and seating which our equivalent would be sofas and chairs. A navy blue seating plan in the living room would be a fantastic contrast to the pearl white flooring. Night sky blue is also something to consider and is perhaps more fitting. Try a neoclassical sofa design that has a long swooping but ultimately, low arch as the backrest. It will have straighter metal armrests to give the sofa a bit more shape and authority. However, you can balance this out with a blue velvet chair that has wooden armrests that have been carved into the shape of a flower or perhaps a vine.
The most regal of all items would be the marble coffee table which has to stand low to the ground as well. This is something you will get used to in the neoclassical style, as flat and low furniture is more prominent and loved than conventional high styles we see today. The shorter legs will be slightly bent outward, in the shape of a dog’s leg. You can have it in stainless steel but it must have a slight rose gold and appears to have a truly authentic style. The ancient Greeks used polished bronze for their high-end furniture so you can replicate it with this.
Archways are a must
Archways are one of the hallmarks of this style. It’s what makes the neoclassical style, classical. Archways can be implemented in a number of ways. Firstly, your front door should have an archway frame. This can be made out of stone or perhaps carved wood. The arch should feature classic figures such as Greek philosophers, warriors, poets, generals and artists, etc. this will be a bit expensive but it’s the very first thing your guests will see, so you want to make an immediate impact. For the front door, the archway can have specialty replacement windows. The unequal leg arch is definitely something you will want above your front door. It allows natural light to escape into the foyer, while also giving your entrance a bit more shape.
Each room can have an archway above the door if you wish. This will give your interior a naturally curvy shape, which is exactly how ancient Greek buildings like the Pantheon are designed. Your curtain rails can also be shaped like arches, giving your curtains more height and prominence in your home. This is excellent if you have draped curtains that are naturally long.
Standing in time
No neoclassical home would be complete without standing sculptures. Fair maiden sculptures were common in ancient Greece as the beauty of women was highly common in artworks. Your home could use a few standing sculptures of men and women. Women in togas and men dressed in full hoplite uniform would be a great style statement in your home. There should be a standing sculpture that stands in your garden as well.
This could be of the sea god Poseidon or perhaps nymphs that were known as angels or fairies that would hide in the forest. Take this approach with every room in your home. For your living room, have the bust of the sun god Helios. He would ride his chariot and thrusting light from his head, overall he saw. For your kitchen, place a sculpture of the harvest god Demeter on top of your cupboard. Learning about the ancient Greek gods and placing limestone sculpture of them around your home, would cement your interior design style as the quintessential neoclassical homage.
The mother of all interior design styles, the neoclassical style is still loved to this day. It’s a re-imagination of the ancient Greek homes but it incorporates modern materials and structures of the contemporary home.
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