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What makes an interior design timeless?

In this article, we explore the key elements that make an interior design stand the test of time. Discover how to create a space that remains stylish and relevant for years to come; with examples.

white modern contemporary living room by daytrip studio
Living room by Daytrip Studio
What makes an interior design timeless?
Clara Carlino de Paz
January 10, 2024

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This article was originally posted on Making Space, a Substack penned by our Cofounder, Matteo Grand. Subscribe below to receive more content just like this.
Good interior design appeals to the trends of today. Great interior design resonates with generations to come.

When taking on a new project, interior designers should think about the timeless elegance they're purposefully creating. This is an imperative not only for the inspired designer, but the sustainable one; a home that needs constant renovations because it's too trendy is inevitably unsustainable (both financially and environmentally!).

In this article, we discuss the key elements that make an interior design timeless; and those designers who ace the timeless category every, single, time. If interior design inspires you, subscribe to our weekly newsletter for a regular dose of awe and education. 

Now, to start, let's go through some truth bombs every timeless designer should know about.

How to make a renovation or interior design timeless

01. Timelessness starts with finding your own style

Many publications will tell you that minimalist design is the way to go when creating a timeless space – but this couldn’t be further from the truth. Minimalism, like maximalism, is an easy way to date a space to the time period in which it was first designed. Like a pendulum, the trends of less and more go in and out of style all the time. For example, the 1970s were a maximalist party of wallpaper, colour and synthetic surfaces, while the 2010s were minimalist overall, with the all-white, exposed-brick, grey sofa look reigning supreme for some time. If you want your space to feel timeless, stick to your true taste and sense of balance, symmetry and contrast. You can find more information on trend cycles in our Journal.

02. Quality and durability will never go out of fashion

Timeless interior design is all about quality and durability. When choosing furniture, fabrics, and accessories, it's essential to consider their longevity. Quality pieces are typically made with superior materials, which means they will last longer and maintain their appearance over time. Timeless pieces should also be durable enough to withstand daily wear and tear, making them a worthwhile investment in the long run.

03. Functionality and comfort reign supreme

A timeless interior should not only be beautiful but also functional and comfortable. The space should be designed with the needs of the occupants in mind. Comfortable seating, ample storage, and sufficient lighting are all crucial elements of a timeless design. Functionality ensures that the space remains relevant and useful over time, while comfort creates a welcoming atmosphere that people will enjoy spending time in. Spaces are there to foster growth, not thwart it!

04. When you elevate the classic, you avoid the trend cycle trap

It might seem obvious, but it’s worth mentioning: piggy-back of established timeless furniture and materials. Some elements have already done the hard work of becoming iconic in their own right. With the right amount of creativity, you can employ some of these works to do the heavy lifting.

Now, you have the basic ingredients to make a timeless design. But how have others done it before? In this section, we’ll be diving into some of our favourite designers (big and small), and discussing how they make their designs beautiful, always, forever.

Timeless interior design studios we're obsessed with

01. Studio Kaya

Studio Kaya, first founded by Deniz Bayern in 2019, is an amazing example of blending the old and the new. Decked in moody dark green, greys and blues, this amazing Victorian house is a testament to antique and vintage furniture and the power of a solid colour scheme. The end result is textured, serene and beautiful.

02. Linda Boronkay 

Endlessly cool, eclectic and with a renovated art deco feel. That’s how we’d describe Linda Boronkay’s incredible style. She has been featured in the House & Garden Design 100 and in Phaidon’s "By Design: The World’s Best Contemporary Interior Designers''. She’s also the former Design Director at SohoHouse. And above all, she has cultivated a vibe that transcends years or decades, and feels perpetually fresh and timeless. 

03. Hubert Zandberg

Hubert Zandberg Interiors is an architectural and interior design firm that specialises in luxury residential and commercial projects in the UK and around the world. The company, which was founded by Hubert Zandberg in 2002, employs 19 highly creative designers and architects with extensive experience. Their style is balanced and eccentric at the same time, unafraid to push boundaries while embracing the clients’ taste above all. All of their interiors are wonderfully unique, yet impossible to pin point in time. A true classic. 

04. Alexander & Co

Alexander & Co’s philosophy is simple: “They believe in the spirit of place. They make timeless, beautiful spaces for those who care deeply. They are architects, interior designers and furniture makers. They are driven to inspire their clients and their global village.” And they were not kidding about timelessness. Their designs bridge between minimalist, Scandinavian and mid-century, capturing the best essences out of all styles to create something truly theirs, something that stands the test of time.

05. Daytrip Studio

Daytrip, a design studio located in London, was founded by Iwan Halstead and Emily Potter. Specialising in architecture and interiors, they aim to create unique spaces that reflect their clients' needs and purpose. With a strong understanding of existing architecture and contemporary design, Daytrip creates spaces that are thoughtful, recognizable, and timeless. Their approach is characterised by intelligent use of materials, an attention to detail, and a keen awareness of style. You can learn more about this Daytrip Studio in this article.

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