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Interior Design and Style - Victorian

victorian houseVictorian Interior Design

Victorian homes are probably what the UK is well known for. The rows of terraces which are such a typical sight in towns and cities across the country, hark back to the period. Many people, when they buy one of these properties, would like to restore and renovate the property to bring back the Victorian era.

But when you are on a budget you may find that it is not the easiest thing to achieve. If you own a Victorian home you already have the perfect canvas to recreate a Victorian home. Even if you own a modern home you can still get the Victorian look without compromising on the modern luxuries we all need.

The Victorian era ran from 1837 until 1901 and was a time when people were starting to buy goods for their home. People's incomes were increasing and the ability for the middle classes to invest in their homes were better than they had ever been. It was an era when people would attempt to recreate the styles of previous times such as Gothic or Rococco. In fact it wasn't so different to what people do these days. More people were travelling to places such as India and Asia and this influenced the period heavily.

The general Victorian style which we all recognise is the ornamental one with ceramics, glass and pictures on every surface. It can be cluttered, if over done. Flowers and animals feature heavily and are more realistic than other interior design periods. Many homes had feminine and masculine rooms. A male room might be a leather bound library or study, while woman might have a light and airy parlour.

Recreate the look

  • Try heavily patterned carpets and rugs laid over polished floorboards.
  • Tiles in kitchens and hallways in highly patterned designs.
  • Use strong colours such as greens and reds or purples and blues. Colours should be strong and dark.
  • The Victorians were the first to use wallpapers and favoured highly patterned designs such as those of William Moriss.
  • Use plump cushions and overstuffed furniture. Don't be afraid to add another cushion just when you think you have enough. Strong fabrics just as velvet and chintz are perfect.
  • Ornate fireplaces are a must; try to get originals if you can. Always try to replace any mouldings which have disappeared from your home. Reproductions can be bought from DIY stores and can be very effective.
  • Try a central stair runner rather than a full carpet. Paint the stairs underneath in a dark brown.
  • Use brass fixtures for lights and switches. Originals can be found in antique stores quite readily.
  • A must is a roll top bath and matching sink and toilet. You could buy an original, but some reproductions are excellent.

A Victorian interior is a constant process. You can add things as you see them and you have the luxury of being able to find items all over the country from antique stores to boot sales. Because the era ran for such a long time you have a multitude of styles to choose from. Happy shopping!