Bohemian interior decorating

Written by pamela ann ludwig
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Bohemian interior decorating
Decorate with an array of colourful items to bring out a gypsy attitude in your home. (Goodshoot/Goodshoot/Getty Images)

Bohemian style evokes images of artists, gypsies, travellers, and hippies. Based on the Eastern European traveller gypsy aesthetic, Bohemian styles allows for a broad array of choices for colours, accessories and decorating accents. Decorating a bedroom, living room, house or apartment in Bohemian style allows for your own personal style and aesthetic to show through. Bohemian decor styles are appropriate for decorating on a budget, as you can easily integrate second-hand items and found treasures into your decorating.

Skill level:


  1. 1

    Choose a colour scheme. This will affect every step of the decorating process, from the walls to the furniture to your art and decor objects. Bohemian colour schemes allow for a varied palette. Dark colours work best and you can use as many as you like. You can go more towards the natural Bohemian "hippie" look of earth tones including deep browns, rust, brick, camel or sunny yellow, or more "gypsy bohemian" with magenta, gold, violet, orange and emerald. Avoid pastels, neons and shimmer paint colours. You can paint each wall a different colour or paint one wall with an accent colour. Add some extra elements of design and printed wallpaper or stencilling on the walls.

  2. 2

    Furnish your area. Mismatched furniture, as long as it is not clashing, is a hallmark of the Bohemian style. Place leather Moroccan cushions on the floor to use as seats, or collect several different styles of chairs instead of purchasing a set. Bohemian style embraces the idea that "more is more"; you can decorate with many furniture elements, art objects and wall decor without looking cluttered and busy. As long as each piece is deliberately chosen and placed, your area will appear easy, laid-back and creative rather than messy and chaotic.

  3. 3

    Add Bohemian decorative elements. Souvenirs and art objects from India, North Africa, Eastern Europe or the Middle East will add an eclectic air and complete the image of the free-minded Bohemian traveller. As with the furnishings, avoid the "matching" aesthetic with your decor, art objects and accessories. You can add more elements than with other decor styles, as long as each object complements the colour scheme. Tea sets, musical instruments, hookah pipes, statues or vintage artists easels will enhance the Bohemian artist ambience. Prizes found in nature or antique stores can be reworked into sculptures or used as unique table centrepieces.

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