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Steampunk Interior Design Ideas: From Cool to Crazy

Thinking of Steampunk, what comes to mind might just be a cosplay chick in a leather corset and crinoline, with pilot goggles and an old-style barrel gun. The Steampunk concept is new and elusive, but it seeps into design more and more, with amazing and original results.

Trying to define steampunk, it would be a mixture of elegance and machinery. In interior design, we would find subtle decoration in the Gothic-victorian language (as in Tess d’Urberville or Sherlock Holmes) and some hardcore industrial repertoire: Gothic fashion and the industrial revolution wrapped up in one neat package of awesome design.

The elements of this elusive and gorgeous language are pipes, copper finish, precious stencil wallpaper, clock inner machinery and filament lamp, 19th century technology with a tribute to the invention era.

Here are some interior designs that celebrate steampunk

Be ready to love rusty metal and mechanical fixtures, as well as plumbing elements. Steampunk celebrates the inner workings of technology. Here, a fireplace in rough industrial finish, adding eccentricity to an otherwise conventional living room.

Think of the Victorian train stations and their steel structures with elegant and elaborate decorative details, certificates of both technology and manufacture art. Some of that fascinating mix can be found in this kitchen  hardware and fine metallic details turn it into an elegant cooking laboratory.

Next to all sorts of partly polished and processed metal, exposed brick, roughly finished wood – all of them dignified materials with history, personality and patina –  you will find incandescence as another main feature of steampunk design. Not only has the light bulb been the symbol of invention and great ideas ever since Thomas Edison, but it looks neat in its pure factory form, without a shade or a decorative objct to conceal its raw fire power.

For science freaks, a nixie tube clock that works according to the same revered principle of physics would make for a cool interior decoration.

A design enthusiast went full steampunk in decorating his apartment in Chelsea, New York, that made the headlines.

With a starting point of exposed concrete walls and stainless steel sheet furniture and several burlesque steampunk fantasy additions, the redesign of the apartment requires some adaptation to absurd and eccentricity, but this is its charm.

Wheels of copper and steel as wall deco, old wood furniture with a fine patina of tarnish, the accent of elegant and intricate knobs, engines that work as art installations and a huge plastic zeppelin crowning the living room, seemingly portray a project of the wizard of Oz or some scifi engineer from the past. Also notice the skillful and refined accent lighting along this eccentric art exhibition of a home.

Forever an underground trend, steampunk can thrive in its most absurd shapes, but often enough it can give us inspiring and original design ideas to add some magic and science into an eclectic home. The thing about eclectic homes: an elusive sense of history and cultural diversity, the feeling that the interior of the home tells a complex story, and, when considering a touch of steampunk,  a design of which even the likes of Thomas Edison or H.G.Wells would be proud.

Jeanne Paula

I write for decoist.

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