At NYIAD we teach our students a simple Three-Step Method for designing every room they create:
- A successful room is functional.
- A successful room expresses a mood.
- A successful room exhibits a sense of harmony.
This simple Three-Step Method is the secret of every interior ever designed. We teach our interior design students to consider these three steps every time they look at a room. You'll find the great home decorating ideas in our Room of the Month series as well as in the design tips on this site helpful in creating outstanding room designs.
When our students mail in their interior design project for analysis by their instructor, the instructor starts by commenting on these three Guidelines. Of course, the instructor analyzes other elements of the project too – decor, layout, furniture, style etc. But the key to good decor – and the essential element of every great interior design – is adherence to these three NYIAD Guidelines.
How do they work? How can you apply them? It's beyond the scope of this Web site to teach you every nuance, but you will get an inkling from the Room of the Month Analysis that follows.
In each issue of Designer Monthly, we take a look at a room we think has been designed with particular panache. We look at it using one of our tried-and-true techniques, the three NYIAD Guidelines to Interior Design: function, mood, and harmony.
Ahhhh. There’s nothing like the solace of slipping into a steaming tub at the end of a long wintry day. Even though living rooms, libraries, bedrooms can be relaxing and soothing, for the person who savors a watery respite from the world, the luxury bath beats them all.
Here, we’ll take a look at this luxury bath using the NYIAD Guidelines to Interior Design: function, mood, and harmony.
First, the basic functions of any bath is pretty straightforward: a stall shower, toilet and sink do the job of taking care of one’s personal hygiene. Just a peek into most New York City apartments shows how much of this function can be accomplished in a space little bigger than a walk-in closet.
This bathroom, of course, fulfills all these basic functions, with a tub, a sink set into a countertop, and, not shown in this photo, a stall shower and commode.
And then this bathroom goes beyond that in function. The tub, complete with whirlpool jets, also fulfills the function of providing a place to relax. This is further enhanced by with the frosted windows that let in enough light while providing privacy. The large mirror allows the visitor to prepare for an evening out, and the countertop can hold all the necessary accoutrement for making up and primping.
There is also plenty of storage in this bathroom, with nine drawers and an under-sink cabinet. The stepstool allows one easy access into the tub, and the soft bath rug welcomes barefeet.
The mood of this room is one of soothing elegance. The candles on the wall (reflected in the mirror), at the top of the shelving and by the tub lend a romantic note, and the tub is big enough for two, making this a decidedly romantic, honeymoon style bath. The elegance is in the draped window swags, the decorative disc on the wall, the curved wrought-iron bowl stand.
Finally, everything in this room harmonizes; nothing seems out of place. The harmony is achieved in part through color, as the whole room is done in pale neutrals with just a few eye-catching accents in dark browns. The room further harmonizes with shape, with lots of curved lines, from the bowed window to the swags, from the line of the tub to the arch above the sink.
All in all, this is a bath that goes well beyond the necessities, providing a luxurious place to let the cares of the world melt away.