Have you struggled to style your concrete interior?
Worried about going too pretty and taking the edge off your fab modern home?
Or maybe you’re considering concrete indoors, but don’t want to end up with a home like a bunker?
This post will show you how to style a concrete interior to perfection. We’re calling it a concrete cocktail! If you like, the style is concrete plus …
Concrete plus …
Concrete needs something else to work against. That’s your concrete cocktail.
That makes it the ultimate combination for #RoomyHomeGoals as we’re all about sleek architectural interiors, with the hard edges blurred by pompoms and textiles!
Why choose a concrete interior?
Architects have long loved a concrete interior. As a finish, concrete is now an evergreen option, rather than a trend.
It doesn’t always scream luxe glamour, but concrete can look very high-end. If you work it right.
Of course it’s still a construction material, but increasingly concrete is also a decorative effect.
It’s easy to clean, hygienic, practical, robust, well priced for large quantities. It’s a great material for high traffic areas. And if you change your mind about a concrete floor for example, you can refloor over it easily. It’s great colour, now that grey is the ultimate neutral!
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Changing concrete trends
Here’s what the Houzz Design Trends report 2018 had to say about concrete –
“Concrete has always been a popular material choice, but don’t be surprised to see it in more unexpected ways, such as in furniture, decorative accessories, wallcoverings, countertops and tile.” (Mitchell Parker)
Concrete is not just useful for industrial interiors, it can also look warm and luxe. As a solo performer however, concrete is a bit too edgy and brutalist for many.
We aim to persuade you that it’s best as part of a duet. It needs a striking contrast, something to work against. This makes it look less hard and “unfinished”.
So we’re focusing here on concrete interior styling as rough luxe, with emphasis on the luxe. This opens it up as an interior finish for more people. It also gives you a chance to make your metallics or plush fabrics sing against it.
Any drawbacks to concrete interiors?
Concrete does need some maintenance, including being occasionally resealed.
Dare we risk stating the obvious? It’s hard underfoot and to touch! However, although it’s a cold material, it holds heat well when used with underfloor heating.
What to put in the concrete cocktail shaker
Think of concrete as the man-made element of your design. Then add some nature, whether it’s greenery or natural fabrics.
You’ve got to soften it or add some natural touches. So what knocks off a few of the hard edges?
Perfect pairings with concrete
- Natural materials – wood, leather, nubuck.
- Metallics – mix shiny things like brass and antique gold with rough concrete.
- Texture and textiles – linen, rugs, velvet, sequins, pompoms and embellishments.
- Dusty earthy colours
- Dusky florals or dark botanics – super glam without being too pretty.
- Luxe lighting – textured glass and modern or vintage chandeliers.
- Glass and greenery (that makes a trio, but you get the idea!). If you can run your concrete flooring into the outside space, then use big chunks of greenery to link the two spaces, and as much glass as you can muster.
- Round if off and go for furniture with softened edges.
Concrete – go big
Walls and floors
An expanse of concrete is perfect for your floors or walls.
In fact a polished concrete floor can be a really cost-effective alternative to marble, and you can make it look just as beautiful.
Add as much as you dare, but take care to soften the look with some wood or supersized glazing, preferably both. Like these modern spaces, designed by McCann Moore Architects, Ireland.
We love these walls, complete with jewel colours and some shiny finishes.
If you’re not sure about a big commitment to a permanent wall finish, what about a concrete-effect wallpaper?
Or these concrete tiles are super-starry.
Concrete – go medium
Maybe you’re not ready for the commitment to concrete in vast parts of your interior.
However, you can add a rough luxe look with concrete furniture. Consider tables, cabinets, even chairs!
Kitchen surfaces are a perfect spot to bring in some rough luxe concrete styling. It doesn’t just have to be worktops, you can add concrete finishes to cupboard doors and splashbacks as well.
Concrete – smaller accents
We love this trend for concrete lighting and accessories.
What about vases, planters or even shelves?
Inspired by our concrete interior styling?
You’ll find lots more concrete styling on our Pinterest board.