Minimalist Design – Aesthetics and Elements of Simple Design

We live in such a busy, fast paced world it can be easy to get caught up in collecting things and cluttering up our spaces without even thinking about it.  When we consider minimalist design for our living spaces, our work spaces, and our life-we can live a simpler, more meaningful life.

Minimalist design is using less at home, work, and in life.  It’s about maximizing living spaces, work spaces, and keeping things uncluttered and focused on natural materials and space.  From architecture to the workplace, food to websites, minimalist design focuses on what really matters in life.

Are you looking for a different way to design your workspace or living space?  Does your space feel cluttered, cramped, or claustrophobic?

What is Minimalist Design?

Minimalist design in using the “less is more” principle practiced in minimalism.  It is defined by doing more with less, living more intentionally, and focused on experiences and people rather than things.  Minimalist design prioritizes quality over quantity.

The goal of minimalist design is to create visual harmony and a sense of calm through minimalistic principles. Its aesthetic appeal lies in its ability to create a sense of relaxation, elegance, and beauty by removing non-essential items and focusing on what truly matters.

Minimalist home decor - Minimalist Design - Gone Minimal
Minimalist home decor

What is a Minimalist Design Philosophy?

Minimalist design philosophy is all about prioritizing only what is essential.  It’s taking a home, an office, or an individual room and designing it around the main function.  Minimalist design philosophy focuses on natural materials, limited materials, open spaces, neutral colors, and an uncluttered space to maximize the potential of the space. 

It’s also like the opposite of the lush, flourishing society we live in today: it’s using light and shadows, essential elements, and practicality according to architects Du, Peng, Zhang, and Li of the Chongqing College of Architecture and Technology in China.  The minimalist design philosophy has various types, which we will review next.

Minimalist design in using the “less is more” principle practiced in minimalism.

Types of Minimalist Interior Design for the Home

Minimalist interior design does not necessarily mean bare walls, no furniture, and white walls-there are different types of design for not only different tastes, but different rooms as well.  There are no rules when it comes to minimalist interior design or even minimalism in general-it’s about what works for the individual.  Let’s take a look at minimalist design for the different areas of the home.

Bathroom Minimalist Design

Bathroom minimalist design focuses on an uncluttered and serene space where personal care occurs in a relaxed space.  Only the essentials are used and storage is optimized with uncluttered countertops and soft lighting.  It’s a comfortable space for self-care and relaxation-and it’s much more likely to draw you in to take care of yourself than a cluttered, disorganized bathroom!

Living Room Minimalist Design

Living room minimalist design is creating a space where family and friends gather.  It’s about using only the essentials when it comes to furniture and décor.  The minimalist living room should feel spacious, comfortable, and uncluttered.  It is a bonding and relaxing space-not a furniture collection.  All you need is adequate seating, some comfy pillows, and a small table-perfect for gathering!

Spacious minimalist living room - Minimalist Design - Gone Minimal
Spacious minimalist living room

Office Minimalist Design

Office minimalist design is focused on creating a space that is optimized for work.  It is uncluttered, stocked only with the essentials, highly organized, yet comfortable with logical flow.  Everything one needs for the workday is systematically placed for efficiency, productivity, and comfort for work.  Office minimalist design includes essential pieces like a desk, chair, light, and a picture of something or someone inspiring.

 Kitchen Minimalist Design

The kitchen is one of the most important rooms in a home, and kitchen minimalist design can help make it both useful and comfortable.  Kitchen minimalist design means less countertop clutter, organized tools and food, clean and open space, and a fun place to prepare meals for the family and friends.  Less clutter and more organization leads to more meal prep and cooking (and perhaps better health)!

 Bedroom Minimalist Design

Bedroom minimalist design maximizes space, utilizes only the essential furniture pieces and accessories, and is very organized.  There’s a great deal of focus on comfort, natural light, and an uncluttered space for relaxation and sleep.  Bedroom minimalist design utilizes a bed, chair, pillows, natural light, little décor, and maybe a live plant for color and detoxifying the air.  Perfect for a good night’s rest-or just to hang out!

Minimal bedroom design - Minimalist Design - Gone Minimal
Minimal bedroom design

Minimalist Design Architecture

Minimalist design architecture is about using simple designs, natural and necessary materials, and maximizing space.  This style of architecture emphasizes natural light, open spaces, durability, sustainability, and simplicity.  From office buildings to tiny homes, minimalist design architecture is good for you and the environment!

Types of Minimalist Design

According to researchers Zhang and Xue of The Journal of Packaging Engineering, even with the complexities of society, minimalist design products still are quite popular with consumers. Minimalist design is not limited to work and living spaces-there’s also minimalist design for other aspects of life.  Let’s review a few different types of minimalist design.

Minimalist Design for Websites

When designing websites, it’s important to keep in mind the purpose of the website.  With minimalist design for websites, the unnecessary elements are removed, the unrelated content is not included, and the simplest interface is used.  This makes it much more user-friendly and direct so you can find exactly what it is you’re looking for.  Saves time and effort!

Simple website design - Minimalist Design - Gone Minimal
Simple website design

Minimalist Design for Drawing

Drawing is a hobby many people enjoy, and it can be daunting if you think there has to be a certain level of detail or color.  When you use a minimalist design for drawing, you use just enough to define the picture.  It is a simplified version of what you want to draw-only the essentials.  Minimalist design for drawing can help anyone draw anything and truly appreciate the end result.

Minimalist Design for Tattoos

Minimalist design for tattoos includes simple line drawings, very little color, and very understated designs.  From geometric designs to flowers and animals, minimalist tattoos are understated and simple yet packed with meaning.  Bonus-simpler design means less time in the chair and money saved!

Minimalist Design for Food

You’ve seen the fancy designs on birthday and wedding cakes, fancy meals at upscale restaurants, and even food packages at the grocery store or supercenter.  What does that really convey?  Minimalist design for food is simple and uncluttered, understated yet important.  This type of food design is not underwhelming-because the focus should be on the taste and nutrition.  When the design is simple, it’s easier to make the choice to nourish your body.

Minimal food design - Minimalist Design - Gone Minimal
Minimal food design

Minimalist Design for Backgrounds

Backgrounds can be the defining feature for a room, a photo, a painting, even a website.  When minimalist design for backgrounds is utilized, the focus remains on the important pieces-what’s in front and what’s important.  A simple, uncluttered background can decrease distraction from the subject of the photo or painting, and can help make a room feel quiet, soothing, and relaxing.

Modern Minimalist Design

Modern minimalist design is focused on open spaces, natural light, modern architecture, wall textures, and neutral colors.  It displays unique structural elements and simple, modern beauty rather than décor and accessories.  There’s storage space, open floor plans, and simple eye-catching beauty.

In this helpful video, learn three simple tips to achieve a clean, minimalist aesthetic in your space.

Related Insights

What is the purpose of minimalist design?

The purpose of minimalist design is to maximize space and materials, simplify the design, and focus on the things that really matter.  Whether it’s cake, tattoos, a bedroom, or a house-minimalist design encourages valuing experiences and people over items.

What is the minimalism concept?

The minimalism concept is about doing more with less.  Less clutter, less stuff, less décor, less everything when it comes to the home, work, and life.  Minimalism focuses on meaningful experiences, loving people, and finding more value in living than in collecting stuff.

Where Real People Would Most Like To Use Minimalist Design

I asked friends and family to list where they’d like to use minimalist design the most. Here is what they shared and what I learned from the poll, and the percentages of their responses.

Places People Would Like to Use Minimalist DesignTimes Selected
Dream home8%
Living room8%
Formal dining room8%
Places where people would like to use minimalist design

Other Resources:

Minimalist design can bring so much meaning to any and every space in your life.  From your home to work, and even your hobbies, minimalism allows you to focus more on the things that really matter rather than the things you surround yourself with.  Minimalist design is a powerful tool in creating living spaces, work spaces, and the spaces you use to practice your hobbies and spend time with friends and loved ones.  Where will you incorporate minimalist design in your life?

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