Eastern Market. The Detroit Riverwalk. This Eco Homes Project interior. While beauty is the obvious common denominator here, these Detroit spaces also boast high levels of functionality.
Marrying function and aesthetics is the heart and soul of what we do as design strategists at Concetti. You can imagine our excitement when we learned this year’s Detroit Month of Design intention is to bring unity to the forefront.
So, we got to thinking – we often focus on the specific strategies that unify functionality and aesthetics, but what are the big-picture concepts that drive this goal? To create unity in your space, we recommend asking yourself three high-level questions and exploring the strategies that follow:
1. Is This “Me?”
Whether you already have a developed, poignant style or you’re not sure where to start, make sure you’re always starting with YOU – meaning, identify what makes you, you. What makes you want to spend time in a space? What inspires you? What makes you most comfortable? Using that kind of information will help you create a human-centric space that is a true extension of yourself and fulfills your needs.
Read more: How to Make Your “(New) Perfect Home” Feel Like You
Unified spaces are deeply intertwined with human emotion. Taking the time to really understand yourself requires some work, but it’s so worth it because it establishes a solid style foundation right from the beginning.
In fact, this is something we do with our clients in Phase One of our process. We ask questions about their desired aesthetic, pain points, wants, and goals and their answers tell us how their space needs to look and function. This step also reveals how they’re hoping their space will eventually make them feel.
It's one thing to style a space that’s objectively “cool,” but to use your own psychological processes to create a space that brings you comfort, joy, and a sense of completion…that’s magic.
2. “Is It Livable?”
No matter how beautiful a space is, it will fail to feel unified unless it supports your lifestyle. This means never having to sacrifice functionality for beauty and vice versa.
Although answering this question requires asking yourself a series of more questions, such as…
- How many people does the dining room table need to seat?
- Do I plan to host parties?
- What about my pets? If I don’t have one now, will I in the future? If so, where will their food, toys, etc. go?
- Where do me and my loved ones/guests tend to gather frequently?
- Is there a corner I always run into or stub my toe on?
- What functional items do I want in this space but don’t want to see?
These questions will yield the answers that highlight your existing pain points and open the door for optimal problem-solving and a well-planned space.
3. “Is This Cohesive?”
Have you ever walked into a space that, at first glance, checks a lot of the right boxes but still feels a bit off? It’s probably because the colors, textures, décor, and/or furniture were disjointed or the functionality fell flat.
This is often a result of a myriad of reasons. Sometimes it looks like trying to incorporate too many trends at once, having pieces that are never used or are uncomfortable, or having too many rooms with competing intentions.
Think of cohesion as unity’s first cousin. Cohesion ensures that all the elements within a space mesh well together without being too “matchy-matchy.” It also makes the space feel intentional yet effortless.
Here is a handful of ways to incorporate cohesion:
- Feature recurring colors within several rooms.
- Select pieces that solve a problem and match your aesthetic.
- Incorporate complimentary textures.
- Purchase furniture that is both beautiful and comfortable.
- Do a vibe check.
Cohesion can help you set boundaries and establish a sense of recurrence, which helps ensure the space is livable and the pieces within the space have a sense of belonging.
You Can’t Spell “Community” without “Unity”
The belief of Detroit Month of Design 2022 is that unity is the element that holds the key to creating a future in which all people, and our planet, can thrive.
The spaces we inhabit are thought to have a direct impact on the energy we put into the world. Why not spend your time in a space that unifies both function and aesthetic, and is authentically your own? Why not invest in pieces that add both beauty and value?
You may not know how it will positively affect your life, your business, or your community until you try it!
Are you interested in unifying your home or business? Let’s connect!