Characterful yet Contemporary Interiors
Interior Design

Contemporary yet Characterful Interiors

If you love the look of an ultra-modern, sleek interior but don’t accept that it has to be soul-less …. read on. We’ll show you how to balance the two aesthetics, creating a strong, highly curated look that still has bags of character. Create as much space and light as possible, whilst drawing the eye to unique textures and layering throughout the interior.

Unique & Interesting finishes

The main focus of a highly contemporary interior should be unique and interesting finishes and textural choices – think of special marbles, polished concrete, hardware finishes, parquet flooring, exposed beams or loft style frameworks. The architectural bones of the building should work in harmony with the major wall and flooring choices you make.

Consider Design & Function

Highly contemporary interiors are characterised by both design and function. Every practical element is considered and only chosen or visible if absolutely necessary. Consequently worktops, walls and floors are clear of unnecessary or ugly accoutrements, delivering undisturbed form and line to the interior.

Choose from our range of decorative interior accessories that include tall and sleek skirting boards, coving that hides wiring for LED lighting options, wall moulding, door moulding and ceiling roses – all in a highly contemporary style. Our period style finder will help you select our modern ranges.

Limited Colour Palette

Stick to a limited colour palette, only allowing for the odd colour pop or accent wall. A lack of clashing colour will create an ease and flow whilst travelling through each room of the house. It also creates a blank canvas for selected artworks or contemporary furniture choices helping them to deliver a strong style impact in the space. All of our decorative interior products arrive primed and ready to paint in whatever colour you choose. I would highly recommend the architectural range of the Paint & Paper Library and Edward Bulmer.

Creative Lighting

Lighting is crucial in the success of this style, creating atmospheric corners with hidden LED’s, less common in traditional homes. Uplighting or downlighting can be used in highly creative ways with the help of our LED Coving Collection, even on a diagonal when in use with our 3D textural panelling. At the same time, make the best use of natural light as it casts the deepest shadows which are design features in themselves.

Lighting designers Kate & Sam suggest the following,

“When you’re designing highly contemporary interiors, our advice would be to include hidden LED lighting to allow for full control at different times of day and to create different moods.”

3D Textured Panelling

You might think of wall panelling as very traditional, but our range of 3D textured panelling is highly contemporary. One of the main advantages is that it’s very lightweight and can be hung on the vertical, horizontal or diagonal to create some really interesting shapes and is also pre-primed and ready to paint to suit your scheme. This blog was written for LLC using their products as examples to create this type of interior.

Top Tips for a Contemporary yet Characterful Interior

  • Don’t clutter – consider both design and function
  • Unique finishes and textures
  • LED lighting can help you create highly contemporary design
  • Strong linear design with balance
  • Highly curated furniture choices
  • Limited colour palette with the odd colour pop
  • Bold interior accessory details such as deep skirting and cornicing

Six Products to create a Contemporary yet Characterful Look

  1. Wall Panelling No. 116 XL Bars

The ‘Bar Panel No. 116 XL’ is one of our latest additions to the wall panelling collection. As the name suggests, XL is an extra wide bar design than our original No. 111 panelling and works to great effect when used together. The pleasing symmetrical design is simple and timeless and adds an extra dimension to interiors without overpowering. You can play around with the orientation to create statement walls either half way up the wall with wainscoting or right up to the ceiling. As with all our panels, they arrive pre-primed so that you can paint them any colour you like.

Wall panel No. 116 XL for Library Ladder Company
Wall panel No. 116 by LLC

2. Wall Panelling No. 114 XL Valleys

We are loving this new addition to our 3D textured wall panelling collection. ‘Valleys XL’ describes the extra large scooped design that started life as No. 109 Valleys, a slimmer version. When used together, you can get really creative with your walls with a highly modern style-statement. These images show you how, by playing around with colour accents, you can add to much more interest to your interior, whilst still maintaining a very contemporary look.

Wall panel No. 114 XL Valleys by Library Ladder Company
No. 114 XL Valleys wall panel by LLC

3. Tall Skirting No. 181

Designed by Pierre Daems, this tall, stepped skirting board is ideal for contemporary interiors. Whether you have tall ceilings or lower but long wall runs, this product will provide a bold design-led statement. Integrate it with No. 180 architrave to create continuity between walls and floors. It has been designed with a recess at the back to hide all caballing for a sleek finish. 

Tall skirting boards No. 181 by LLC
Tall skirting No. 181 by LLC

4. No. 352 Cornice Uplighting

Uplighting, or ‘trough lighting’ is widely used in the hotel, bar and restaurant industry because it delivers so much atmosphere and a highly contemporary look. Now you can use it in your home to great effect by installing it 15 – 20cm from the ceiling creating a ‘floating cornice’, a subtle shadow line at the bottom and a lovely glow of soft uplighting. One of our plainest profiles, it’s a very popular choice for highly contemporary interiors.

No. 352 cornice uplighting by LLC
No. 352 Cornice uplighting by LLC

5. Classic ceiling rose No. 8

Although described as ‘classic’ the super simple design of this ceiling rose makes it perfect for modern schemes. The real advantage is that, because it’s made from Purotouch (find out more here link) the lightweight nature of this product means it’s easy and safe to hang a large ceiling rose like the No. 8 with a diameter of 38cm.

Ceiling rose No. 8 by LLC
Ceiling rose No.8 by LLC

6. Wall Panelling No. 112 Ridges

Our ‘Ridge’ panel has a really interesting design that creates light and shadow effects and adds texture and detail to a room. Because our wall panels are made from Purotouch, they are water-resistant, so don’t forget they could be used in a bathroom or kitchen too. Play around with subtle or bold paint effects and orientation. The olive paint colour used in this image is warm and natural but still highly contemporary, whilst in contrast the white on white tonal office space would be boring without these grooved wall panels, contemporary lights and portholes.

Wall panelling No. 112 by LLC
Wall panelling No. 112 by LLC