“Words are, of course, the most powerful drug used by mankind.” Rudyard Kipling wasn’t referencing the latest fixture in interior design when he made this statement, but he might as well have been. The home decor trend for words knows no bounds: designers are employing everything from single letters to free-flowing prose, projecting them onto walls, cushions and tablecloths. To suggest that using typography effectively in your home is easy would be incorrect, however. Here we share a selection of handy pointers for getting it right.
When it comes to content, the toughest decision designers are confronted with is one of meaning. Where some favour the power of an enchanting font, others choose a line from their favourite sonnet. There's no one-size-fits-all solution, but there are a few things to bear in mind.
Firstly, it’s important to consider the distinction between public and private space. The best location for prose and poetry that's close to your heart is tucked away behind closed doors, in your bedroom or en-suite bathroom. What may hold a deep meaning for you won't necessarily have any significance for someone else.
If you're selling a property, it's wise to steer clear of anything too personal. Instead, opt for single letters or generic words.
Beware of context
When executed correctly, the use of lettering adds a layer of pleasing texture to a room. However, words should be used sparingly in interior design. A rule of thumb is to use typography to offset the existing styles in a room. For example, minimalist themes can be broken up with complex fonts. Conversely, large and clear lettering can offer respite in a busy space.
As with other interior trends, the trouble with incorporating text into the home is that it can soon become passé. The answer is to avoid permanence. Single letters can easily be rearranged. Similarly, confining your lettering to movable objects such as cushions keeps things fresh, allowing you make regular changes and play with different configurations.
This is less of an issue for those decorating a property with the aim of selling it. With prospective buyers passing quickly through your home, the focus can shift to creating an immediate impact. Once again, the best practice is to keep the design generic. Avoid anything too emotional or specific, relying on the typography to lend visual interest, not meaning, to your property.
Engel & Völkers are real-estate experts with a solid understanding of the impact interior design can have on selling a property. From advice on everything from how to use lettering in your home to the type of flowers buyers find most enticing, the E&V website and our knowledgeable in-store agents are full of actionable tips on how to prepare your property for the market.