Industrial interior design is known for its exposed, practical elements, open floor plans, rustic colors, and clean lines. It’s a bit of minimalism and a touch of modern decor woven together by natural elements and warm colors.
There’s a bit of an edge to this kind of home decor as well as an undeniable sense of warmth – and it’s contradictions like this that make industrial decor so alluring to many people. But, this is also why industrial design can be a little challenging to pull off!
If you’re one of the many people wondering how to get industrial decor just right, you’ve come to the right place. Here are 6 tips on how to make your home the perfect industrial-looking space.
1. Think About Function and Form
Industrial interior design is a very no-frills approach to home decor. It focuses much more on function than it does form. Everything has a purpose in the home, which is often highlighted in the way each piece is designed.
When many items like this come together, there’s no room for clutter or busy areas in the home. Rather, focusing on function allows each room to be clean – with sharp lines and open spaces – and inviting in a “blank canvas”, soothing kind of way.
2. Know Your Color Palette
While it’s good to prioritize function in an industrial space, form will still have a bit of an influence, of course. This is one reason why it’s good to go into the design process with a few go-to colors in mind.
Most industrial interior design colors are rustic, warm, and found in nature. They range from burnt orange to pine green to sand and cedarwood. With so many to choose from, it’s good to have a few select colors to be the theme for your home.
These will guide you as you fill your space with large and small pieces alike because they’ll give you a foundation to work with. They’ll keep you from getting items that clash with one another, or too much of the same color!
3. Expose the Elements
Keep in mind that color comes in many textures – including wood, brick, and metal.
You may bring some additional warmth into your home with an exposed red-brick wall in one room, while a dark wood floor brings this feeling into another room. When choosing light fixtures, metal chandeliers and sconces are the best way to go. They make a bold statement, even though they are small pieces.
These may sound like too many different things, but when combined correctly, they actually look just right. If you find yourself not sure of which element to use, take a step back at the decor you have so far. You don’t want to focus so much on wooden pieces, for example, that you barely have any metal or brick to balance things out.
4. Recycle and Upcycle
Another way to bring industrial interior design to life is to recycle and upcycle. This is a great strategy for exposing the elements as well as for saving money while decorating. Plus, it’s good to have a few pieces look “worn in” or gently used; it shows they have character and helps set the industrial tone you’re going for.
Your gently used pieces may include a vintage map, an old sign that is now wall art, or a distressed wooden furniture item that has been salvaged. Whatever you choose, just be sure it has a purpose wherever you put it. Don’t get too crazy with recycling and upcycling materials just to have a bunch of industrial-style items in your home without anywhere to put them.
5. When in Doubt, Be Neutral
If you’re feeling a little overwhelmed, take a neutral approach. You can’t go wrong with a dark grey area rug or a simple wooden coffee table. Neutral items like these may be just what you’re missing to tie everything together.
This is especially true for rugs and throw pillows. You don’t want to make too much of a statement with a super colorful rug or pillows with intricate patterns. That’s not in line with industrial decor, and it can throw the room off.
Instead, opt for soft tones with a bit of texture. This way, you’re neutral, but not boring!
6. Create an Open Layout
The final tip of industrial decorating to keep in mind is to have an open layout. While you may not feel like tearing down some of the walls in your home, you can still create the feeling of open space even in areas that are a little tight.
All you have to do is get a little creative. Something as simple as hanging a mirror on the wall of your dining room can transform it from feeling small and cramped to open and inviting. Open shelving is good in a small kitchen and storage is the trick to getting the most out of every inch in your bathroom.
These are just a few ways to make the individual areas of your home more inviting. But, remember there should be a sense of flow from room to room, too!
Blending Industrial Interior Design with Other Design Styles
It’s one thing to master industrial interior design on its own, and a completely different challenge to blend industrial decor with another design style.
If you’re going for an industrial-modern look or an industrial-farmhouse kind of home, for example, you have to know the ins and outs of the other kind of decor style just as well as you know industrial design. That’s the only way to blend the two approaches together in a way that looks unique and well-thought-out.
Luckily, there are many resources available to you to help you create the home of your dreams! Be sure to check out our additional interior design tips as you plan your next big home decor project.