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A Glossary of Interior Design Terms

Whether it’s a corporate office, restaurant, or even library, how the inside space is designed is heavily influenced by human behaviour and interaction. Interior designers are qualified in building codes as well as ergonomics, spatial concepts, colours and so much more.

When it comes to interior design, there are many aspects of a home or room that you might not have considered – let alone know there was a word that even described it. That’s why at Hotondo Homes, we’ve created a glossary of interior design terms so you can better understand what’s involved in the process of designing your home.

Accent colours: A complementary colour that’s used in small quantities to lift or add punch to a colour scheme.

Accent lighting: Specifically focused lighting that’s designed to accent interior decor elements or architectural details.

Ambiance: The feeling, character and atmosphere of a space. Ambient lighting, also known as mood lighting, enhances the sense of warmth and depth in a space.

Bespoke: A custom make or design.

Cornice: Any horizontal decorative moulding or ledge that crowns a building.

Eclectic: A combination of various designs.

Facade: The exterior of a home that looks out onto a street.

Focal point: The point in a room that the eye is immediately drawn to with intent.

Feng Shui: Ancient Chinese art of arranging objects in a space to achieve harmony and balance. “Feng” translates as “wind” and “Shui” translates as “water.”

Finish: The surface coating of an item. This can include paints, stains, treatments, and varnishes.

Hue: The colour or shade of an item.

Interior wall: A wall on the inside of the house, designed to divide sections of a home or to bear structural weight.

J-Box: Also known as “junction box”, they are wall-mounted units that contain electrical wires.

Kitchen Work Triangle: Positioning your sink, stove and refrigerator in harmony.

Niche: A sunken area within a wall or room that is used to display an ornament.

Overlay: A decorative piece added to a flat surface.

Pendant light: A light fixture that hangs from a ceiling. For effect, pendant lights are often used in multiples.

Sconce: A light fixture that is attached to a wall for support.

Splashback: A vertical panel that is designed to protect the wall behind a stove or countertop from splashes.

Terrazzo: A composite material that is used for floor and wall treatments. It consists of a mixture of coloured chips from marble, granite, glass and other materials. 

Vanity: A piece of furniture that often combines a sink, countertop and mirror.

Well-appointed: Any furnishings, accessories or appliances that are made with exceptional quality and craftsmanship.

Window treatments: Types of window coverings (for example, blinds, shutters or curtains) that are used for equally aesthetic and functional purposes. 

Be in the know with Hotondo Homes

Understanding and knowing all these terms makes it easier to communicate your taste and style with your Hotondo Homes sales consultant and interior designer. When it comes to choosing the fixtures, fittings and finishings of your new home, having knowledge around interior design terminology will help you convey your vision for your dream home.

No matter what style of home design you’re envisioning, visit the Hotondo Homes website for more inspiration.

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