Combining your personal style with all the items that you collect over the years is something we all do – in fact, there’s a named style that’s perfectly suited to lots of colour, ornaments, and culture! So, whether it’s art you brought back from a family trip or an inherited vase, there’s room for it all in bohemian-style interior design.
Read through our ultimate guide to the boho interior design trend, from its beginnings to its current form, and check out all our top tips and tricks for incorporating this style into the spaces in your home, from boho décor to furniture and even boho-style flooring and walls. Let’s jump in with both feet!
Bohemian design is an evolution of the style adopted by those who liked to live life less conventionally. Travellers, writers, and actors are some of the groups who made the nomadic lifestyle into a design trend that has transcended the years – the collection of eclectic items and decoration in bohemian spoke of a carefree and creative lifestyle that mixed genres from all eras.
The concept stems from nomadic travellers bringing back treasures from faraway lands to decorate their homes, collecting a variety of items from different cultures that wouldn’t necessarily go together conventionally, but when collected together and paired with an exciting colour palette, can turn any room from drab to fab.
Some of the key facets of the bohemian style include:
Each piece of furniture in a bohemian home traditionally comes with its own story – whether you found it in a second hand shop or online, or you spent months looking for the perfect side table and this one happened to be passed on to you by a great-aunt, any story that makes it unique and special to you works! Bohemian furniture also tends to be eclectic, mixing eras and styles, then covered with tasselled pillows and hand-knitted throw blankets.
Bohemian décor is inspired by global travel and the different ways other cultures live their daily lives, so you’ll find it’s common to include floor seating as well as typical raised furniture. Small pouffes, day beds, floor pillows – all of these are great ways of including more seating for your guests and encouraging a welcoming and relaxing atmosphere where your guests can recline and lounge at their leisure.
Mix and match is the key to nailing bohemian décor, and that also includes lighting. A matching overhead light and standing lamp simply might not cut it – but an array of decorative lamps from a variety of charity and antique shops will! If buying new lamps isn’t possible, then why not take a thin scarf and drape it over your current lamps to introduce some mood lighting? Candles are another great source of light that can make a space feel relaxing, intimate, and warm – perfect for bohemian décor.
Rugs are a huge component of bohemian décor too – no room can be called boho chic until it has at least two rugs in it! It’s a great look to layer multiple rugs, to add texture and create interest, and it’s also common to hang a wall rug too. Check out our guide on how to hang a rug on the wall for the ultimate boho décor fix.
It’s not just your furniture and decorations that can have a hint of boho about them – your walls and flooring can also take on more of a boho look. Those jewel and earth tones we mentioned earlier are a perfect choice for your walls in your space – an emerald green paired with plenty of pink, blue and purple accessories will be like looking into a glamorous jewellery box! And a calming brown mixed with natural fibres like a sisal rug and macrame décor will give that relaxed, casual feeling to your space.
Since the bohemian style is shabby chic, wooden flooring can work really well in these spaces, because over time it will gain scuffs and marks and evidence that people have lived and worked on it for years. Engineered wood is a great pick for a bohemian space, because it has the natural properties of solid wood on the surface, with the added benefits of a sturdy plywood base that makes it much stronger than your average solid wood planks.
If the look of wooden floors appeals to you but you prefer them to stay pristine, try laminate flooring and LVT, which both have a protective coat over the top to keep the image of wood free from scuffs and stains. And of course, if cosiness is the ultimate aim for the vibe in your space, then investing in a colourful carpet is a must!
If you’re interested in finding your own colour palette for a bohemian space, check out our lookbooks which are packed with colour inspiration and combos that can work for every style. Alternatively, if you like the idea of incorporating pops of colour in your home, but combined with more structured furniture and features, then why not discover the Danish pastel trend that's taking the world by storm? And if you already have an idea of what you want to go for, why not pop into your local Tapi store to speak to our floorologists about comparing different products to get the best fit for your space?