Art History and How To: BOHEMIAN STYLE

July 6, 2022

Free flowing textures and patterns, loose fabrics and fringe. Anything come to mind? Most likely, you envision a Bohemian style interior. At the center of this aesthetic is personal, comfortable touches surrounded by free flowing features. 


Over 200 years ago, the Bohemian style was born from an alternative approach to elegance. The coined term originated from the French word “bohémiens” which was used to describe an outsider or adventurer. Frequently associated with artists and those of a more eccentric lifestyle, yet still intellectual. The first mention of the style was at the end of the 18th century, around the time of the French revolution. Initially the perception of this style was of nomadic descent originating from the Balkan area of Eastern Europe, in a region actually called Bohemia. Now it’s synonymous with carefree, free flowing artistic expression. 

Jumping forward to the 1960s, the Hippie Movement revolutionized not only fashion, but also lifestyle. This included ethnic dresses and embroidery, mixed print, fringe and flared silhouettes. To learn more about dressing in the Bohemian style, check out The Pearl Source!


A great place to start when building out your Bohemian space is with a solid base. Starting simple and muted! Warm, earthy tones are a great canvas, but so is a muted white or cream. Keeping it simple at the core will allow you to really enhance with unique patterns and textures next. 


When picking colors, trust your eye! But typically sticking to warm tones, cool tones, and jewel tones is a safe bet for creating a great balance of tones. Luxurious colors like emerald, ruby, wine and deep purple are a great place to start when picking accessories to dress up the space.


Once you have your rich color base with your neutral core, jewel and warm tone elements, feel free to throw in some bursts of bright colors! This will liven up the space and add some dimension to it. Pinks, oranges, blues and greens are bold additions to the palette that won’t throw off the vibe.


Texture is an essential part of the Bohemian style, and where you’ll likely find the most freedom! Shag, botanicals, embroidered and velvet are all shoe ins for the perfect Bohemian room. Hanging plants in woven carriers, including paintings and statement pieces on the wall as well as sculptures are fantastic. If you really want to go all the way, some funky tiles splashed around the room. Layering soft textures, interesting patterns, and rich colors will create a welcoming and comfortable space.


Another element of texture that’s important to note when picking the pieces to place inside your space is the level of life they’ve received! In the Bohemian style, a little bit of distress on fabric, metal, and wood is welcome! Think vintage and flea market vibe. The more eclectic and mismatched, the better!


Picking the furniture is a big part of building the space. Typically, furniture lower to the floor fits better in this style. Thick cushions, comfortable throw pillows and blankets, and floor cushions create that element of comfort. Lots of warm wood frames and eclectic coffee tables and chairs are essential as well. Wicker furniture, baskets, and other globally influenced pieces are important. 


Adding mirrors and unique pieces that mean something to you is the key to personalizing this style. Avoid the minimalist mindset, as often the clutter in a Bohemian home is what makes it feel so luscious. For more tips on building out your Bohemian space, check out Decor Aid’s piece on it! 


When deciding on how to light the space, shoot for lots of ambient light. This could mean a sunset lamp, as made famous by TikTok. Or, it could be some warm toned hanging lights, a lava lamp or two, or even a simple nightlight. The main objective is to create a soft and warm space that feels relaxing and comfortable. Big windows are great for the daytime, and that natural light is perfect. However, for the nighttime, ambience is the goal. 


Put all these elements together, and you’ll have a Bohemian paradise before you know it! Sit back, relax with a cup and rose tea, and just live in the moment, man! Happy vibing!

You Might Also Like