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Interior Design and Style - Gothic

gothic arched windowYou might be forgiven for imagining that a Gothic style interior design theme would be all black with candle sticks and church pews. While these design elements could surely play a part, Gothic can be much more refined and subtle. Just a few touches here and there can bring about a feeling of Gothic revival without having to dress in black and listen to The Sisters of Mercy.

The Gothic architectural style originally hails from the Medieval 12th century and could be identified by features such as pointed arches and stained glass. The Victorians also decided to use Gothic features in a style which became known as Gothic revival. However it didn't stop there, as the look is still very popular and easy to achieve these days.

While it is best suited to older style buildings and especially converted chapels or churches, the Gothic style could be used in any home, but large proportions are a good place to start. If you like to be dramatic and love bold colours and decorations, then the Gothic look is for you.

Keep it dark

If you are a lover of light and airy spaces, Gothic is not ideal. Medieval homes were generally built of stone or dark wood with panelled walls. In addition they would have had very small windows with plenty of leading. This would mean that light was in short supply.

The use of wood meant that the rooms were very dark, although this darkness would have been punctuated by huge roaring fireplaces surrounded in stone. Colours such as dark red, blues and golds are ideal for furnishings.

Use candles instead of overhead lights as this will create the right mood for the room and add authenticity.

The wood for the trees

Gothic homes should use as much wood as possible. Dark stained wooden floors, chunky wooden furniture, wood panelling and wooden window ledges. This wood should not be painted, but stained to a dark mahogany colour. Cover floors with rugs to keep the heat in and to add a splash of colour.

Wrought iron and stone are another two materials which work well in a Gothic home. Use items such as candlesticks and fire pokers to create an older look on a budget.


If your home already has Gothic style windows, made of stone and with the traditional pointed arches, there is very little you need to do. However most of us have to make do with fairly plain modern windows. In this case you can add leading to give them a more traditional look.

Curtains should be thick and velvet or brocade. The darker the colouring the better – reds and purples are perfect. Use tie backs with tassels in gold to accent the curtain material.

Yes, this look is very dramatic, but it can actually be a very relaxing environment. Warm and cosy while at the same time an environment where you can indulge your sense of fun