Five decorating myths debunked by the professionals
Black for large areas; bathrooms always with tiles. We dismantle topics, accurate and not so accurate, of decoration.
1. Black makes a space smaller
"There is an idea that a dark color can dwarf the space, but here it achieves just the opposite effect: it gives a sense of depth and breadth," said Donna Stain, the owner of the kitchen we see in the image during our private visit to her home. Therefore, the first false myth we debunk is that the color black visually reduces the dimensions of a room. Interior design professionals are betting on breaking schemes with black, which many believe is perfect for enhancing interiors. "It is true that dark colors absorb light and, therefore, misused can give the impression that the space is smaller. However, this shade is an irreplaceable resource in decoration to create contrasts, give depth and create elegant and intimate spaces," says Pilar Acebrón, director of the online interior design firm of the same name.
For example, to paint a room in black, you have to combine white strategically. "This way, the depth of the dark color will make the light-painted space look brighter thanks to the contrast," Acebrón shares. One example is this kitchen by Kubikoo Estudio. For Rober Quiñones-Herm, its director, "black brings a feeling of spaciousness that few would expect, plus it is a color that gives sobriety and elegance to a kitchen, and makes it gain prominence in the house."
2. A sideboard is not modern
From a forgotten piece of furniture to this year's star piece: What has happened so that the world of decoration has given the sideboard a second chance? Several factors have coincided. The first is that it is a versatile piece of furniture that can be used to separate open spaces and as a display case and storage space. The rise of the new fifty or postmodern style is another circumstance that has led to its success, where this retro piece fits perfectly. The equation also enters the size of the current apartments, which require furniture that divides open spaces but offers the visual continuity that the walls do not have.
Sebastián Bayona, of the Bayeltecnics Design interior design studio, highlights the possibilities of materials, finishes, and designs that a sideboard can have. "Logically, for a sideboard to fit in a modern environment, it has to have a modern finish. For example, oak wood is given a more modern touch by highlighting the black veins or Peruvian walnut. Certain woods, such as cherry, wenge, or some walnut, are no longer used," says Bayona. "Personally, for a modern sideboard, I prefer a lacquered finish or one covered with high-quality melamine, which is spectacular, such as the one shown in the black image. I like to design sideboards with illuminated niches, combine recesses with doors, and that it is not very tall -between 75 and 90 cm," he concludes.
3. Wallpaper does not work in an entryway
The foyer is the first impression of a house and, often, the part of the decoration to which fewer resources are dedicated because it is an area of passage. Rarely is the option of wallpapering considered. The reason? There is a false myth that it is an option reserved for bedrooms (especially for children). In addition to aesthetic issues, wallpaper can be used to give visual height to a hallway with low ceilings, for example, by placing a striped wallpaper vertically.
The wallpaper in the entrance hall will give, at a glance and upon entering the house, an idea of the general decorative style of the house and the taste of its owners—the owners of this house in Rentería, Guipúzcoa, like to travel and nature. The entrance hall of their home, wallpapered with natural motifs, reflects this. This is a project by Elisabet Brion.
4. Always tiled bathrooms
For a relatively short time now, professionals have been increasingly opting for alternative materials to tile. Microcement is a solution in demand. From the Llule Design studio, Verónica Leone is committed to using this material. "One of the most spectacular features of micro cement is that it can be installed on both vertical and horizontal surfaces without the need to remove the existing ceramic tiles," says the professional. In the house's bathrooms in the image, renovated by Clip Arquitectes, a micro cement has been used for its natural effect and the little maintenance it needs. The absence of joints and grooves makes micro cement very hygienic and easy to clean.
5. Red only in minor details
In ancient times, the difficulty of obtaining the red color - it was extracted from the cochineals of the cactus - made it very exclusive. Its use has always been reserved for special occasions and people, becoming, for example, the red carpet. "Currently, the good use of the color red in an interior depends not only on the size of the space but also on the orientation of the room, its scale, the presence and coexistence of other objects in it; in this way, the color red can be present in the smallest detail or occupy a considerable surface," explains Gonzalo Pardo, director of the architectural firm Gon Architects.
In this kitchen, red covers even the appliances. Its concept seeks to convey more than the exclusivity formerly associated with red. In this case, the protagonist's color appeals to feelings. "The project frees itself from prejudices, assumes the risk, and bets on the literal construction of a heart for the home," adds Pardo, responsible for the renovation of this house in Madrid. Pardo chose a bright red for the kitchen with "a plastic condition that allows the city to penetrate extensively into the domestic space. Being oriented to the west, it generates every evening of the year a show of atmospheric magic," he describes.