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Top 10 Interior Design Terms You Really Need To Know

Top 10 Interior Design Terms You Really Need To Know

Leading Bangladeshi interior design firm Imagine Interiors reveals for you the list of interior design terms you absolutely MUST know in order to have a meaningful interior design discussion.

We’ve all been there.

You start a conversation with someone and then that someone starts using words you’ve never even heard of, much less know what they mean.

If it’s an informal conversation, it’s just an embarrassing situation.

On the other hand, if that happens in a formal conversation – like an interior design consultation – it could be a lot more serious.

Because, if you’re discussing an actual interior design project with someone and you have no idea what they’re talking about, and you may end up agreeing to something you don’t understand.

As a leading interior design company in Bangladesh, Imagine Interiors has seen many clients facing a critical communication gap in their interior design project consultations with us.

That is why, based on our experience in handling interior design consultations, we decided to list out some of the design and decor related terms that occur in our discussions with clients but which many clients seem to be unfamiliar with.



An ambient space or design is one that does not try to change/utilizes inherent/environmental conditions.


An antique is at least 100 years old.

Imagine explains: I’m sure you knew that ‘antique’ refers to something that’s very old, so why did we include this term here?

That’s because if someone offers you an ‘antique’ at a premium valuation (in other words, they try to justify a product’s high price saying it’s a genuine ‘antique’), you should verify whether it’s really so old as to justify the price they’re asking.


A bespoke product is something that is created completely from scratch based on your exact request.

Imagine says: You should know that ‘bespoke’ is not the same as ‘custom’ and we explain this when we define ‘custom’.


A bohemian design is a laidback design that’s created entirely by someone’s whims and fancies.

Imagine explains: ‘Bohemian’ and ‘eclectic’ (explained after ‘custom/custom made’) are slightly different.

We like to think of it as ‘bohemian emphasizes comfort (whether mental or physical) while eclectic emphasizes style’.

Custom/custom made

A custom/custom made product is a product that is made as per some conditions unique to you.

Imagine explains: Please understand that ‘bespoke’ and ‘custom made’ are not the same.

‘Custom made’ is a very generic term that could mean anything from being a completely unique product to a generic product that is painted as per your wish.

Whereas a ‘bespoke’ product is expected to be something that is created just for you, based entirely on your request.


An eclectic design is one that incorporates elements/aesthetics from many set design styles.

Imagine explains: Think of ‘eclectic’ as a bespoke design style.

Focal point

A focal point is a place or an item in a designed space that draws people’s eyes.

Imagine explains: ‘Focal point’-s become very important in some cases of interior design like Hallway Interior Design.


Hygge is best defined as a feeling of warmth and coziness.

Imagine explains: ‘Hygge’ may be an example of a regional interior design term, that is, more important in interior design in the USA than in interior design in Bangladesh.

The word itself is Scandinavian in origin and possibly refers to the warm feeling one gets during Christmastime when relatives visit and there’s merrymaking all around, offsetting the cold of winter.


Patina is a thin layer that appears on some metal and stone surfaces over prolonged periods of time.

Imagine explains: Chemically, ‘patina’ is nothing but the wear and tear of those metal and stone surfaces over time.

However since it is visually attractive, some designers and decorators artificially create a ‘patina’ effect on metal surfaces if you want.


A retro design contains references to old design styles but is not completely an old or past design style by itself.

Imagine explains: On the other hand, ‘vintage’ design is a design style that is 10 or more years old.

This list is by no means exhaustive.

However, having read this list, you are better informed to have discussion with an interior designer (especially one with a designer about a project) than you were 5 minutes ago.

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