With growing urban prosperity, the importance assigned to tastefully decorated interiors has increased. Even the middle class realises the need to "do up" their residences and work places. As a rider here, it would not be out of place to mention that beautiful interiors are certainly not the sole domain of town and city dwellers! The most exquisite folk and tribal arts and crafts adorn the interiors of homes in our remote rural areas!
While some interior designers may be oriented towards typically American, Scandinavian or European concepts and translate them into their projects, the trend today is to devise novel ways of using a blend of local, traditional and modern raw materials. While the design may be Western, the materials could be typically Indian. In a totally modernistic interior, one should not be surprised to find a unique traditional pillar, arch or artefact used cleverly to enhance the beauty of a particular theme.
Nothing is really taboo these days and clever designers rarely resort to kitsch! One may find the use of very bright colours such as canary yellows, ultramarine blues and other stark contrasts in colour schemes. Depending on the client's choice the theme may be sober, rich, stark, minimalist or classical. May be even a clever combination of several styles.
In furniture again the trend is to move away from strict norms. The concept of everything "matching" is outdated. Normally a general cohesion and coordination is sought rather than the boring "beige and brown" standard furnishings and furniture. To quote an example, one need not be surprised to find in a thoroughly modern home, a dining table with a long water channel trough running through its length. In this channel, diyas replace the traditional candles used on dining tables. The concept is inexpensive, simple but unique. The furniture could be finished in an extraordinarily vast range of laminates and veneers ranging from beech, cherry, ash or Italian Burl.
With the recent liberalisation of imports, a vast range of foreign materials is also easily available . Ceilings are no longer restricted to plaster of Paris work in ornate designs. An immense range of prefabricated finishes is available. Even mouldings, cornices and stenciled borders can be easily purchased to decorate ceilings. Stained glass is no longer the domain of windows and is finding increasing use on ceilings.
Floors are not limited to local marble or terrazzo. A vast range of high quality ceramic tiles are being used in addition to the equally large range of marble, granite and stone. Another popular flooring material finding its way into interiors is stain and scratch resistant planks made from recycled wood products. As opposed to traditional parquet floors, these planks are easy to fix and come in an assortment of amazing colours and finishes to suit every taste.
Walls are no longer subjected to the usual dab of paint. Beautiful textures and finishes are available to enhance the look of any wall. The textures may be rustic or sandy, flakes or grains. Further, wallpapers, borders, stencils and wall claddings can add interest to the dull old whitewashed wall. So if interiors interest you, the sky's the limit and choices too vast to enumerate.