What is positive space in interior design and why is it important? -A360Architects

What is positive space in interior design and why is it important?

Positive space refers to the space in a room that is occupied by objects or material things. This includes interior design, art, furniture, lighting and other accessories such as curtains, rugs and pillows.

Since positive space determines the overall composition of the interior, it must be used properly. A positive space is usually more dynamic, as the objects in a room are more focused. It is motivating and active and can be used in different ways

It is important to use positive space in a way that contributes to the character of a facility. Since positive space refers to objects and furniture, interior designers can make the most of these items to change the look of a room. Whether it’s the bathroom, living room, dining room, or bedroom, interior designers use their practical experience and knowledge and draw inspiration from underlying design principles to create a balanced space.

While designers need to fit furniture, objects and interior decor into a space, it is equally important for them to leave empty spaces between these items. The fine balance of space and objects creates a pleasant dimension in the interior.

What is negative space in interior design and why is it important?

Negative space refers to the empty areas around the positive space that occupy the rest of the room. When interior designers use negative space effectively, the positive space in a room is usually highlighted.

Positive space is usually related to negative space. Think about it — you can not just put objects in a room without leaving space for the negative space, otherwise the room will look extremely cluttered. So a negative space highlights the positive space and makes it not look cluttered

Using and highlighting negative space is just as important, if not more so, than using positive space. Negative spaces can make a home seem more pleasing both esthetically and psychologically. They help make a space feel more open and make the function of individual items more apparent.

Tips for the use of positive space in interior design

1. Create a modern and rustic interior design

One of the best places in a home to make good use of positive space is the kitchen. If you are looking for ways to make your kitchen modern yet rustic, use objects like a kitchen island to draw focus to the objects in the room and make them the focal point.

Positive space can also be used by adding shelves, kitchen cabinets and other decorative items like wooden crates and glass bottles. You can also place bar stools or dining chairs around the kitchen to give the room more balance

2. Use a single statement piece

To make a room meaningful, you do not have to fill it up with lots of objects. You can also use a single highlight piece, such as a light fixture or a piece of art, to enhance the space and give it depth. For example, in the bathroom, you could set up a luxurious-looking bathtub. The negative space around the tub can be left blank.

3. Use color

Positive space does not necessarily have to be created using objects — you can also add it with color. Instead of making a bold statement with objects, artwork or home decor, you can enhance the space with a contrasting color.

To do this, you can either paint a wall a different color or add furniture in jewel tones to the room. Use the positive space in the form of colorful accessories that will breathe life into the room

4. Create a modern living space

Interior designers use modern styles to create a positive space. In a living room, you can achieve this by making a statement coffee table the focal point and surrounding it with floor pillows, rugs or throw pillows. These objects can also be added in different colors to accentuate the positive space. By placing the objects in the room, a designer creates more negative space to breathe, which provides a balanced ambience

5. Pattern in bedroom

Patterns can be used in the bedroom to fill a positive space. Interior designers usually use patterned curtains, headboards or furniture in the room, while the rest of the room is in a neutral tone. This also works for smaller spa


With the right design ideas and design elements, any interior designer can create harmony between the positive and negative spaces within an interior space. If you are starting as a designer and are excited to use these design elements, start with choosing the right colors from the color palette. The use of negative space and positive space can create a harmonious balance within the interior space. Whether it’s the dining room, bedroom, or kitchen, use furniture in a way that it forms the center stage.


Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store