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Luxury Victorian – A New Take on a Historic Style

Henck Design, Newton Square Custom Home

Who wouldn’t love a style named after the reign of one of the most prestigious and influential (not to mention completely bad-ass) British monarchs? While we can’t all be the face of incredible cultural, industrial, and scientific expansion (not to mention a survivor of six assassination attempts), we can use the interior design style born from Queen Victoria’s reign to transform our homes into one defined by lavish decadence and romantic luxury.

Thanks to the Industrial Revolution, the middle class were suddenly able to own more luxurious items- and they didn’t hold back. The end of the Victorian Era was a time where excessive decoration indicated good taste and high status.

In tribute to the queen herself and the beautifully ornate style her reign inspired, here are some of Henck Design’s favorite ways to create a fabulous Victorian inspired home interior.

With the new availability of colorful pigments, Victorian paint colors became dark and rich. This is an opportunity to go bold with your walls! Look for hunter greens, ruby reds, and deep blues to create an ambient background for your space. Bored of solid, single colored walls? Grab a sheet of wallpaper you love for your home and get pasting! Blue and green water-silk wallpaper with gold floral and leaf patterns are a Victorian trademark, adding instant depth and richness to any interior. It’s the perfect backdrop for an elegant bathroom (just don’t forget the claw foot tub!) or as an accent wall to balance painted chair rails and paneling. If you’re feeling especially daring, line your walls with paper and take a paint roller to your ceiling. We especially love this look in a bright, well-lit room – marrying delicate, floral wallpaper with a pale blue or pink ceiling and lots of white crown molding. You’ll instantly feel that your home’s interior design leaves you ready to sit down for tea with Queen Victoria!

Imagine only having access exclusively to cotton and linen, then one day gaining access to all of the silks, velvets, and embroidered brocades that your heart desired. It would be difficult to not excessively use them. Fabrics used in Victorian interiors are the epitome of luxury. Look for dramatic floor to ceiling curtains lined with silk and button back armchairs, sofas, and ottomans upholstered in velvet or leather. Furniture should be just as decadent, with an emphasis on handcrafted character. Heavily carved mahogany, oak, and walnut pieces with intricate details and delicately curved edges make the perfect base for all of those rich fabrics in classic Victorian homes. Placing a large, patterned carpet in the middle of your floor, leaving a border of exposed floorboards around the edge of your room, creates the perfect cushioning to rest those beautiful Victorian furnishings. If you can’t find the perfect jaw-dropping Oriental or Persian rug then intricately patterned tile or parquet flooring are just as fabulous Victorian interior design options. Dining rooms, kitchens, and bathrooms all boast these ornate interior motifs and heavy materials in this era’s style.

While it may sound intimidating, this style doesn’t have to be over the top or heavy handed. Creating a clean and modern interior that’s still ornately Victorian is all about balancing each element and strategically choosing where to have your most dramatic Victorian moments. While the late 1800s were all about cramming as many ornate accessories into each room, modern Victorian spaces can be achieved through carefully placed oil paintings, wall sconces, and elaborate flower arrangements.

If you’re looking for more ways to tap into your inner Queen Victoria or you’re overwhelmed by the idea of appropriating this lavish style into your own home, check out Henck Design’s Victorian Living Houzz Ideabook and Victorian Living Pinterest board for some of our favorite Victorian interiors and inspirations.

At Henck Design, we work with our clients to design homes that are fabulous and inspiring. Contact Us for more information on how we can help you integrate this style into your home interior.



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