Designing our homes is personal in every way. From the way it’s designed, to what we have – everything has a story and a memory or two. We know how special this is, which is why we asked four interior designers from one of India’s most loved interior brand—Livspace.com, to give us city-centric home design tips.
Design tips for Mumbai by Rajvi Jhaveri
“Of late, Mumbai has been leaning towards a global, Scandinavian aesthetic,” says Rajvi Jhaveri, a Design Partner with Livspace. “However, most Mumbai homes are small, so it’s an interesting challenge to create a clean, clutter-free look, while incorporating all the necessary furniture and Vaastu considerations,”adds Jhaveri. Rajvi graduated from the New York School of Interior Design and worked with top designers in Manhattan and Mumbai, including Vicente Wolfe, David Easton, Ashiesh Shah and Julia Roth Designs, before joining Livspace as a Design Partner. She recently took on a bigger role and now, as a Community Manager, uses her experience to guide several Design Partners to design innovative spaces.
Tip #1 Camouflage storage: Small homes need a lot of storage to accommodate every member’s needs. Since storage is primarily for utility, it’s best to hide it. Opt for monochromatic schemes and paint your storage units the same colour as the wall. You can also use it as a space to display artwork to add visual appeal. Also, look for double-duty furniture that comes with in-built storage.
Tip #2 Work with material palettes: If you’re looking to bring in a global, high-end feel to your home, consider using different materials. Most Mumbai homes use the typical paint and wallpaper finishes, so something different, such as a stone wall in the foyer, can really stand out. Combine a unique material palette with a few statement artwork and decor pieces for a luxurious feel.
Design tips for Bengaluru by Saswati Mukherjee
“Bangaloreans are big fans of the form-follows-function school of thought,” reveals Saswati Mukherjee, a Design Partner with Livspace. “A pared down look that is chic, clean and cost-effective is in high demand. On the flip side, if this is not done right, this style will lack personality” adds Mukherjee. A former behavioural analyst, Saswati found her calling as a designer in 2011 and started her own design studio.
Here are her tips to achieve the right look on a budget.
Tip # 1 Limit your colour palette: Nudes, creams, and beiges are great options since they add dimension, reflect light and offer a neutral backdrop that highlight design elements. Use simple patterns and straight, clean lines to cut visual clutter.
Tip# 2 Accent furniture: It’s ok to love classics and invest in pieces that will last. Adding an accent piece, like an upholstered chair in a trendy print, a unique console table, etc., will change the way your space looks. It is also easier to replace pieces of furniture when you want to change the look of your home.
Tip #3 Infuse personality with artwork and plants: These are great accents for minimalist homes since they add texture and colour. Use a carefully curated selection and remember not to go overboard.
Design tips for Delhi by Nehaa Rakyaan
“The Delhi homeowner is very conscious of aesthetics and well-informed about the latest trends. The main concern here is tempering style with practical considerations without going overboard,” says Nehaa Rakyaan, a Design Partner with Livspace. She is experienced in designing interiors for residential and commercial spaces in various cities across Asia, including Hong Kong and Kuala Lumpur. As a Design Partner with Livspace in Delhi, she focuses on truly understanding her clients’ needs and conceptualizing spaces that are unique to them.
Tip#1 Prioritize your lifestyle and personal tastes over trends: It’s important to take your lifestyle into consideration while designing your home. For example, if you have young kids, opt for a clutter-free layout and easy-to-clean finishes, rather than high-maintenance surfaces. To avoid ending up with a huge collection of pieces that you don’t really like, pick furniture decor items that match your personal preferences
Tip#2 Leave some breathing room: Not all the furniture needs to be statement pieces. Typically, there will be one or two hero pieces in a room, and the other elements need to complement it, not compete with it. Don’t clutter all your walls with artwork – leave some empty space that will allow important pieces to shine.
Tip#3 Embrace modular furniture: People tend to prefer bespoke furniture by carpenters. However, modular products are a lot sturdier and last longer. They also have better quality finishes, which is important in the long run.
Design tips for Hyderabad by Priyanka Pawar Sirigiri
“Homeowners in Hyderabad are well-travelled and familiar with design trends around the world. At the same time, they are well-connected to their roots and love traditional interiors,” says Priyanka, Design Partner at Livspace. Sirigiri has spent several years designing both commercial and residential projects across South India.
Tip#1 Mix traditional and contemporary styles: To achieve a balance of both styles, complement clean-lined contemporary style furniture and finishes with Indian accents. This can be done with traditional paintings, brass idols, ethnic patterns and motifs on upholstery etc. Instead of using a number of small items, try going with one or two large pieces.
Tip#2 Greenery: Bring in a bit of the outdoors with plants and greenery. These work well in an arid climate like Hyderabad, since they add freshness and can also have a cooling effect indoors. You can choose low maintenance indoor plants if you don’t have a garden.