When you know the basic interior design principles you can transform any space to look fabulous. In design, balance creates a feeling of equilibrium. It is all about equalizing or approximating the visual weight of objects. Balance is created not just through shape, but through color, pattern, and texture as well.
As in music, rhythm in design is all about creating patterns of repetition and contrast to create visual interest. You can achieve this by using the same color or shape at different intervals. Its purpose is to move your eye around the room. For instance, you can establish a rhythm by using a color in the pillows, picking it up in a painting, and echoing it again in a rug. These repetitions will help carry your eye around the room.
Harmony is created when all the elements act together to create a unified message. Just as rhythm can create excitement, harmony creates a sense of restfulness. For instance, you can create harmony by using just one color, even though your forms vary greatly in shape, size and texture.
A room where everything gets equal importance will seem either scattered or boring. You need an anchor. Architectural spaces often have points of interest such as a fireplace or a window with a beautiful view. You can choose to enhance the built in focal point by arranging furniture around it to emphasize it. In a room that lacks such a built in point of interest you can create one through groupings of furniture or using an unusual or large piece.
Proportion is the ratio between the size of one part to another, and scale is how the size of one object relates to another or to the space in which it is placed. For instance, a large overstuffed sectional in a small room will be out of scale.