Rounded elements and soft edges have long been used in interior design to add softness and visual lightness to a space. Recently, there’s been a surge in the strategic use of curved elements in small home design, creating a sense of openness and a seamless flow of movement. We’ve rounded up some of our favourite curved details in homes that appear on NTS, ranging from a striking kitchen counter to a unique sculptural shower.
1. Curved Wall in Jules, Paris
A curved wall presents an opportunity from which light can bounce off and diffuse into darker areas of an apartment. In Jules, the curved wall partition inspired by Le Corbusier’s Villa La Roche acts as a reflective surface by directing natural light into dim corners, enhancing the space’s overall luminosity and sense of spaciousness. The lack of a traditionally shaped sharp corner also opens up the view towards the kitchen, allowing the kitchen island to be seen from the living room and expanding the perceived sense of space.
2. Curved Large Wall Unit in Project Jordaan, Amsterdam
The first thing visible from Project Jordaan’s entrance is a large custom slatted oak wall unit, concealing a hidden bathroom, kitchen appliances, and small built-in shelves. The curves help soften the bulky partition, allowing a gentle transition of movement from the entrance to the kitchen and adjoining living room. The reeded texture also enhances the organic shape of the rounded partition, making it more aesthetically pleasing and naturally soothing.
3. Curved Recessed Ceiling Shelf in DB Apartment, São Paulo
An overhead curved shelf around the perimeter of a living area can be used to amplify the middle of the room, creating an effect similar to that of a spotlight. For example, a section of DB Apartment’s kitchen and dining room ceiling was lowered to form an oval cutout at its centre with a recessed shelf around its edge.
This lowered section was also ideal for housing pot plants, hiding an air conditioning unit, and for adding some ambient lighting to the space (strip lighting around the shelf bounces light off the ceiling, creating a warm atmosphere in the dining room). For more ambient lighting tips, check out How To Create Ambient Lighting In Small Spaces.
4. Curved Kitchen Counter in Kolonaki, Athens
Rounded kitchen counters that wrap around a wall are a great way to create a stylish focal point in your small home while connecting different living spaces together. Kolonaki’s curved terrazzo kitchen bench wraps around the bedroom’s illuminated glass wall, intuitively guiding residents and guests through the apartment with a seamless flow. The customised kitchen cabinets have been finished in striking gold metal, an additional eye-catching touch.
5. Curved Bathroom in House in Newtown, Sydney
The redesign of House in Newtown, a 1930s converted miner’s cottage, made use of every square metre, even the most awkward of areas. One such example was a corner of the courtyard that would have been otherwise unusable due to its triangular shape — but has now been transformed into a unique bathroom with rounded walls. The curved tiled shower wall in the corner creates a sculptural-like design, creating a sense of tranquillity while optimising the use of space.
For more small homes with thoughtful design, check out our website at nevertoosmall.com.