Here you are again.
Another day of work.
It’s like putting your shoulder to the grindstone and being forced to turn the wheel by a 6′ 4″ masked man. He truly enjoys his work, cruelly.
You and the rest of humanity have been doing this for some time now.
Work’s important though. You wouldn’t be able to read this article if others hadn’t put the time in and innovated computers into existence.
But you can feel the pull of the Bohemian lifestyle, can’t you?
Experience the best parts of living. Gather with friends and be carefree for a while.
There’s no extra cost to you but we wanted to let you know some of the product links in this article may be affiliate links so we can earn a living for our hard work.
The bills still need to be paid though.
You’re opting for the next best thing. If you can’t be doing it all the time, at least do it sometimes. That sometimes is when you’re at home, relaxing.
What is Modern Bohemian Decor?
Who officially coined the term Bohemian is lost to the annals history, but the French labelled Roma Gypsy travellers Bohemian.
They assumed, naively, that Bohemia in central Europe was their birth place.
And a travelling lifestyle sums Bohemian up.
Transience and an acceptance of new things. They fit if you want them to fit.
The style is free and without rigidity.
That’s why actors, writers and artists are associated with the decor. They’re idealistic and can adopt another persona at the drop of a hat.
Read More: Over 40 Different Design Styles
Your home will become a melting pot of colors, patterns and textures.
There’s no other design style that uses plants more. Your living room is going to become a jungle, you’ll see jaguars on the prowl.
When you go on holiday, bring back a small statue of a woman basking in the sun.
When you make it to a flea market, bring back the captain’s door of an old, wooden ship.
When you visit your aunt’s, borrow her hemp weave basket on the sly.
Bohemian interior design lets you experiment with whatever elements feel right at the time. It’s not a minimalist style, you’re encouraged to include as much of your personality in material forms as you can.
It’s about stories.
Choose what you put in your home with care.
When someone visits and asks why you have two mismatching nightstands, you should be able to explain their backstories as well as any Marvel film.
The left nightstand fell off the back of a truck in Portland whilst you were travelling to a festival. You used it as a stool at the festival as a woman serenaded you surrounded by a a quartet of juggling reindeer.
The right nightstand was being thrown out by the neighbor from across the street who you’d never spoken to before. It kept the manuscript of his first novel safe for a year before he finally plucked up the courage to get it edited and published. Although it wasn’t a bestseller, it was one of the most important parts of his life and led him to meet his wife of 32 years.
Good stories are everywhere but you have to search for them.
You’ll take time to build this up and will form like an onion, layer-by-layer.
But form it will.
What Colors Should You Use?
White walls mean you can build colors on top of the neutral base.
Earthy tones are the color palette you’ll use for your furnishing and accessories. Below is a basic image we made to help you understand what we mean.
Earthy doesn’t mean boring. Include reds, pinks, yellows, oranges, grays, greens and browns.
You can see how this works in the picture below.
Bohemian room decor is full of fabrics and multiple textures.
A bed will have throw blankets placed on top of it with purposefully random positioning and an excess of accent cushions will make friends with the sofas in the living room.
Read More: Accent Cushions For The Forgotten Furniture
Patterns are often complex, varied and borrowed from different parts of the world.
Below are some ideas, not an exhaustive list but something to get you thinking about the patterns in Bohemian homes.
Ikat’s a dying technique, but it’s hard to preserve both the fabric and the pattern itself over a long period.
No one knows where Ikat originated, but plenty are glad it did.
It’s shown up in countries all over the world with distinct cultural roots, including Maritime Southeast Asia, the Indian subcontinent and central Asia.
There’s evidence of use in South America too.
Ikat’s been used in traditions for centuries and will continue to be for a long time to come.
Navajo weaving comes from the Native Americans frequenting the Four Corners of Southwestern United States, where New Mexico, Utah, Arizona and Colorado meet.
The textiles produced were used for different types of clothing including shoulder robes, dresses and shirts.
A Navajo pattern doesn’t follow any specific rules but has large geometric shapes, typically a combination of red, brown, gray and black.
These colors were provided by the minerals sourced in the region the weaving developed.
Triangles and diamonds were a firm-favorite of the Navajo people, but additional complex designs representing the landscape are also depicted.
Tapa cloth is made from stripping bark from a tree and softening it by beating and soaking. It’s then decorated by stamping, rubbing, painting, smoking and other methods of dye transfer.
The pattern originates from the Pacific Islands, primarily Fiji, Tonga and Samoa and is comprised of geometric grids alongside motifs of fish and plants.
Tapa is black and rusty-brown.
Traditional kilims are very widespread and can be found in countries of the former Persian Empire, centered around what we know now as Iran. A kilim rug is a tapestry rug or carpet and is very popular in a wide range of interior design styles.
As with a lot of traditional textiles, the weaver often tells stories in the images they create.
Their desires, the joys of life and for protection against wild animals.
Kilims are slit-woven, a style of weaving making sharp edges possible and corners that can be adapted into the geometric stylization found throughout the pattern.
Usually with a cotton fabric, Suzani is a tribal pattern made in Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan and other Central Asian countries.
Suzani pattern is typically composed of the sun, moon, and flowers.
The oldest recorded design dates back to the late 18th century, but it’s likely to have begun centuries before.
These are examples of colors and some patterns used in modern Bohemian interior design and home decor.
Follow on to see how you can use these principles in your own home.
Creating Your Bohemian Living Room
Let’s start with the living room.
From coffee that’s slightly too hot in the morning and burns your tongue, to watching a TV show that’s loved by your friends and you think is boring, to chatting about your brother’s cat that visited the vet with suspected kidney infection.
There’s a common denominator among all of the events taking place in the living room and that’s a need for you and your guests to feel at ease.
A large proportion of life’s milestones play out in this room so why don’t you give it modern bohemian decor to help everything to run smoothly.
Make use of the Bohemian color palette described above, be as liberal with adding patterns and prints as you’re comfortable with. You can be more generous than you realize.
Now you know that, let’s focus in on the sofa.
Sofa Ideas For Your Living Room
Unlike other interior design styles, Bohemian doesn’t have a sofa that defines it.
There are a lot of examples out there showing Bohemian living rooms with sofas ranging from big, off-white or cream sectionals through to brown leather sofas with their legs on display to ornate baroque sofas with exceptional carvings in their frames.
Ask yourself what you want from a sofa.
Functionally, a large sectional or modular sofa is poles apart from the baroque.
Put it this way, you won’t be able to nap on a Sunday afternoon in the latter.
Brown leather sofas are popular because they work so well against white walls.
They’re earthy-looking, keep within the color palette and supplementing brown leather sofas with accessories like cushions and throws is easy to make look amazing.
Maintenance is simple, a symptom of purchasing for more than a few.
It’s not uncommon to find a home stylist or interior designer use navy or jade green sofas, which compliments really well against similarly vibrant greens of houseplants.
Recommended Bohemian Sofa Store: Etsy
Now you know you can use any sofa in Boho.
The next piece of the puzzle is coming up.
Bohemian Cushions To Accent Your Sofa
If there’s one thing that does define Bohemian decor, it’s the use of accent cushions.
You’ll see them piled up, one on top of the other.
It’ll be a fight just to get on your sofa, let alone sleep on it.
Contrast the cushions against the background of the sofa and the rest of the living room.
Use a mixture.
Round, square, triangle if you have to. Add some personality and make your pillows interesting.
Recommended Boho Cushion Store: Urban Outfitters
Sofa and cushions, check.
Next is everyone’s favorite furnishing to shop for.
The area rug: Bohemian Style.
How do rugs tie into the style?
More chance to get creative.
A lot of Bohemian lovers buy unconventional rugs.
Let me show you this image again.
The rug isn’t like anything you’ve come across before.
It’s authentic and it’s absorbing to look at.
Although sticking to the carefree attitude which sets Bohemian designs apart is important, you’ll find this interesting.
The rugs are normally traditional Asian (for example Persian or Pakistani) patterns or Kilims.
A rug like the below.
These rugs are pileless, made by flatweaving.
They absorb wear and tear well.
Recommended: Extensive List Of Rug Stores
What’s going to go on the living room rug?
The coffee table.
And your next learning.
Is there a perfect coffee table?
Scroll back up and double-check each image we’ve posted and you’ll be able to see the coffee tables.
They’re all different.
Yet all of them could fit into any of the other living rooms with ease.
Coffee tables made of natural materials are more common.
Wood, stone, leather, even wicker can all be used.
What would Oscar Wilde sip tea at?
Definitely a leather ottoman converted to a coffee table at the last minute.
The living room is covered.
Where’s the next best room in the house? The Bohemian bedroom.
What Do Bohemian Bedrooms Look Like?
Once you’re done listening to your brother talk about his cat’s kidneys, you need somewhere to mull things over, to cogitate, to process it all.
He’s a bit too keen and wants to help out with your garden.
It’s easier to oblige and so you retreat to your bedroom.
You’re likely to be wailing out of the window like a banshee if you’ve still only got beige walls to feast your eyes on.
Can A Bed Be Carefree?
Rooms containing rustic bed frames work best.
Take a look at this old with the new below.
The headboard has a rustic, aged quality against the vibrant wallpaper and bed sheets.
Big fan of the bamboo nightstands too.
Rustic beds are distressed materials, wood or metal.
Try and find a decent bed frame from a flea market, Facebook Marketplace, Craigslist even.
Some manufacturers produce new bed frames that look pre-rusticated.
A rustic shortcut.
Why do rustic beds work in Bohemian interior design?
Your old friends – Life stories.
You want to be able to look at it and visualize the emotional ups and downs of past sleepers.
It’s another textural element to adds to the orchestra.
The above photo is a good example of having a modern bed frame but maintaining the distressed look with an indoor bench.
Great use of color and gradient.
Searching for Bohemian bedding returns pure white sheets and multicolored duvets with large mandalas.
If neither of these are your preferred option, you’ll have to go on a hunt.
If you want to add color, a simple way to control the intensity is to have a few layers of thinner bedding overlaying one another.
The use of multiple throws provides the opportunity to add more complimentary colors without needing an outlandish pattern on the bed spread.
If you’ve set your sights on a metal frame and patterned bedding then the bedroom interior below will inspire you.
Both are subtle in their application, they’re the binding that connects the wallpaper accent wall and traditional rug on the floor.
You’ve seen the main components you need to set up your Bohemian haven.
You know that plants are important, but not what you need to buy.
That’s coming right up.
Plants are the essential ingredient
A room doesn’t feel like an adventure if there’s nothing alive inside it.
Plants provide dynamism, a constant state of change.
What plants though?
Common ones to choose from include the Snake Plant, Rubber Tree, Dieffenbachia, Pothos and Chinese Evergreen.
You can unearth the five plants appearing on Instagram the most.
You’ll find this useful for inspiration.
Worldly Travels Become Accessories
If you’ve been on a dating app for longer than five minutes you’ll know the travelling obsession.
Everyone’s at it.
That’s now you.
Go to as many strange and unusual places you can and pick up some compelling objects.
Compliment with store-bought accessories too.
Wicker basket and bowls are seen a lot and the art below has a lot going on in the pictures, which is balanced by white space.
For more accessory inspiration, you need to check Michelle’s Instagram account out.
She makes some incredible sculptures.
These would look great strategically placed around the home or garden, hidden just enough that it’s a pleasant surprise when a visitor stumbles upon them.
You can also add lots of side tables, hang up traditional masks or set down some lantern-encased lighting with Moroccan motifs.
The lanterns add visual texture to the walls.
Use them as task lighting or to alter the hue of the light as shadows are thrown onto your walls.
Braided-poufs, oriental tealight holders, macrame plant hangers and rattan baskets are seen in a lot of room decor.
Most of these are natural products.
The braided poufs are woven, but alternatives are made from leather. The macrame plant hangers and rattan baskets are spun from natural fibers too.
Modern Bohemian interior design is about telling stories.
Creating unique and interesting spaces with furniture and accessories sourced from everyday life and around the world.
The process will take time.
Earthy colors and lots of patterns are added to Bohemian rooms. Additionally, rustic and distressed furniture inject personality and emotion.
Natural materials are ideal. Wicker, wood, stone are some that make up the baskets, artwork and sculptures positioned throughout you home.
The rest is up to you.
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