Exploring Modern Gothic Interior Design
If you are like most people, when you hear the term “gothic” you likely think of dark, macabre and scary spaces that would fit better in a classic horror film than a fashionable home. However, the Gothic style is often misunderstood. The modern Gothic interior design style is intricate and classic. It can be beautiful and welcoming when done right.
So what is gothic decor?
Gothic decor refers to a style of interior design that draws inspiration from the Gothic architecture and art of the Middle Ages. It embraces dark and dramatic aesthetics, incorporating elements such as ornate details, pointed arches, rich colors, and a sense of mystery and grandeur.
Here are some common features and characteristics of gothic decor:
- Architecture: Gothic decor often incorporates architectural elements inspired by Gothic cathedrals, such as pointed arches, ribbed vaults, and flying buttresses. These elements can be incorporated into doorways, windows, and other structural details.
- Colors: Dark and rich colors dominate the gothic palette. Black, deep purples, rich reds, and jewel tones are commonly used. These colors create a moody and dramatic ambiance.
- Ornate Details: Intricate and elaborate details are a hallmark of gothic decor. This includes ornate carvings, intricate patterns, and decorative motifs such as gargoyles, tracery, and heraldic symbols. These details are often found in furniture, moldings, and accessories.
- Textures: Textures play an important role in gothic decor. It often includes luxurious and tactile materials such as velvet, brocade, satin, and lace. Heavy draperies, tapestries, and embroidered fabrics are commonly used for curtains and upholstery.
- Gothic Furniture: Furniture in gothic decor tends to be substantial and grand in scale. It may feature intricate carvings and dark wood finishes. Common pieces include canopy beds, heavy wooden chairs, ornate cabinets, and large dining tables.
- Lighting: Gothic decor embraces a dim and atmospheric lighting scheme. Candlelight, chandeliers with ornate details, and wall sconces with stained glass or metalwork are often used to create a mysterious and romantic ambiance.
- Art and Accessories: Gothic decor often includes art and accessories that reflect the medieval aesthetic. This may include religious iconography, tapestries depicting mythical scenes, antique mirrors, wrought-iron candle holders, and antique weapons or armor.
It’s worth noting that there are different variations of gothic decor, ranging from traditional interpretations to more contemporary and eclectic takes on the style.
The History of the Gothic Aesthetic
The Gothic style dates back to the height of the medieval period. Many of the most notable examples of Gothic architecture are cathedrals and churches with pointed arches, ribbed vaults, flying buttresses and an emphasis on verticality.
Throughout the interior and exterior, Gothic buildings feature beautiful and intricate craftsmanship. The ornate details and focus on dramatic sculptures have given rise to the macabre image of the Gothic style in the popular imagination.
However, the majesty of cathedrals such as Notre Dame and the Cologne Cathedral tell a very different story. The elegance of these magnificent works of architecture and design helped to inspire a revival of the aesthetic in the 1740s, starting in England. Drawing from medieval inspiration, wealthy aristocrats, especially in the Victorian era, enjoyed designing their homes in the neo-Gothic style. During this time, there was also a revival of the architecture, including famous works such as Westminster Palace (the site of Big Ben).
Today, examples of both the original Gothic period and the revival continue to inspire designers. The classic elegance and drama of the look can make for a beautiful home.
Elements of Modern Gothic Design
It is certainly true that Gothic interiors tend to have a dark and moody feel. However, this does not mean that your home has to feel like the set of a ghost movie. Try creating a contrast between darker elements and light, modern pieces. This can help develop a fashionable, neo-Gothic feel.
Additionally, while you should include some dark décor, natural light can be your friend. Letting the sunlight in on your Gothic interior can help make it feel elegant but welcoming. Getting the tone right can be a challenge for this style because there is a fine line between moody and creepy. However, when you get it right, the Gothic aesthetic is truly beautiful.
Wallpaper is a must-have for a Gothic interior, being a central element of the revival period. Look for monochromatic colors with intricate designs. Elegant floral designs are perfect for this. They work especially well in rich, darker colors such as deep reds, charcoal grays or even blacks.
There is a risk of getting overly dark with too much wallpaper. So, consider adding a modern element of white or cream to balance out the dark wallpaper. Using an intricate design on an accent wall is a great way to achieve this.
Furniture should be approached similarly to the walls. There are some must-have staples such as wrought iron and carved wood. Dramatic light fixtures such as chandeliers and intricate sconces add to the ambiance. Again, you can balance some of the darkness of the style by adding a few more modern furniture pieces. For example, in a bedroom, you may use a modern bed but have Gothic lighting, chairs and tables.
Gothic Décor Style
To help elicit the Gothic style, add some ornate decorations. Sculptures, globes and vases can all work well in this style of interior design.
If you want to be more faithful to the original aesthetic, look for pieces in rich colors with fine details. You can also modernize the look with some starker colors such as black and white. Typically, Gothic interiors have very heavy curtains. The right window dressing can bring a room together. And don’t forget wall moldings and intricate wood carvings in wall accents.
The Perfect Rugs for Gothic Interior Design
If you want to find the right rug for a Gothic interior, follow the same rules as the other design elements. Rich, deep colors such as a pigmented rust red, or even blacks and greys should match with ornate, elegant Oriental designs.
In many cases, it is a good idea to buy your rug first, as it is usually one of the largest design elements of the room. If that is not possible, make sure to get it as early as possible. You can tie it into the room by reflecting the colors of the rug in pillows and other décor.
Antique and vintage oriental rugs are perfect for a faithful recreation of the Victorian Gothic style. To create a more contemporary look, the right modern rug can integrate well. The key is to match the intricate designs of the aesthetic.
The Right Rugs for Your Needs
Whether you are striving for a Gothic interior design style or any other look, you can find the perfect rug at Nazmiyal. We have a diverse selection of antique, vintage and modern rugs to choose from. If you need help, connect with our experts. We are always happy to provide guidance. Check out our collection today and find the right piece for your space.