A few years ago I wrote an article on rococo style. It’s quite ornate and can be a bit over the top, but its influences can still be seen in design today. With that in mind, I thought I’d revisit the design style to share with you what it’s all about. I’ve included the information from my original article along with a few additional bits.
- Sometimes spelled “roccoco”, the style emerged in the 18th century during the reign of King Louis XV in France and over the centuries there have been several revivals. It is also referred to as “Late Baroque” and “Louis XV”.
- The word rococo is a combination of the French words rocaille meaning stone, and coquille which means shell. It was used to describe the shell-covered rock work that decorated artificial grottoes and fountains.
- The asymmetry, fluidity and grace of the style was a reaction against the symmetry, strict regulations and haughtiness of the previous Baroque period. Evidently, they felt that if it was Baroque they should fix it. Ba dump bump…I know… 😉
- You’ll find the frequent use of creamy pastel colors, curved lines and gold finishes along with plant, flower and shell motifs. Refined cabriole legs, the scroll foot, c-scrolls and s-scrolls were also used in abundance. Asymmetrical design was the rule.
This reproduction armchair is a great example of the asymmetry found in the style.
On this console you can see the use of the shell design while the plant motif is evident in the acanthus leaves.
This piece is very feminine and an ideal example of the graceful lines that are present in the furniture.
Made by Charles Frederick Kandler, this mirror boasts the Russian Imperial Arms and Crown. Abundant use of plant designs, asymmetry and curves define this as Rococo.
Even today, Rococo influences can be found in contemporary design. In this room, contemporary bedding helps to update this classic look.
Rococo goes urban chic. The style has been playfully used to influence the design of these 3 sofas.
Rococo inspired wallpaper blends beautifully with sleek modern bath fixtures.
Did you know these popular mirrors were influenced by this 18th century design style?
Classic black and white meets a classic design style…and it includes my favorite sofa style – the Chesterfield.
Though not as excessively decorative as Baroque, Rococo is still a bit ornate. However, it seems to have an intelligent sense of humor about itself and isn’t quite as serious minded. It’s one of the classics designs. And classics never go out of style. You can keep them traditional or update them to fit today’s aesthetic.
I love to see examples of contemporary design that was influenced by the early classic styles. If you’ve found some great examples, do share it with us. You can share the link in the comments section below.