Space + Shape: Elements of Interior Design


We’re highlighting the different elements of design to assist you in achieving your dream home.

We’re looking at space and shape, and having a stickybeak at the homes of Miranda Kerr and Hugh Jackman by way of example!

Miranda Kerr for Royal Albert Vintage Mug collection Interstil Trio Side Table (Set of 3) in black or white Amigos De Hoy Jute Plant Hanger, Rainbow 29cm Flower Vase from the Miranda Kerr for Royal Albert collection with fresh-cut fronds from her garden
From L to R: Miranda Kerr for Royal Albert Vintage Mug collection, Interstil Trio Side Table (Set of 3) in black or white, Amigos De Hoy Jute Plant Hangers, and Miranda Kerr for Royal Albert Glass Vase, online at Zanui

Putting together the perfect home is like a jigsaw puzzle with choose-your-own-adventure options. It’s larger than life and the landscape is always changing (with your tastes and your budget and the latest trends), but it is so thoroughly satisfying when you see it all starting to take shape.

Pushing the limits of your personal style is half the fun, but pulling it all together can feel daunting. Instilling a sense of harmony in your décor is tantamount. But how do you achieve that fated balance?


Enter the design principles. These good looking heroes will help your home look good. No more overworked or underplayed interiors. Conflicting visual narratives will be transformed into nuanced stories with charming and eclectic accents.

A La Mode Studio Island Shallows Framed Print
A La Mode Studio Island Shallows Framed Print, available online at Zanui

By getting back to basics, we hope to help you prevent some of the unconscious errors that are easy to make when choosing furniture and homewares. It feels like destiny when you fall head over heels for that handsome mirror that’s a little distressed around the edges or a beautiful statuesque vase – but choosing pieces that support your space will mean you can love them longer.

They will remain the apple of your eye because they will enhance your space and your lifestyle.

Interstil Republic White Dining Table, Woody Dining Chairs and Jazz White 4 Door Cabinet, available online at Zanui

Recently on the blog, we talked about line – how different types of lines affect the mood you evoke. (See here for more.) The elements of space and shape also influence your overall aspect.

So we’re turning our attention to analysing your space. Then we’re having ourselves a quick stickybeak at Hugh Jackman and Miranda Kerr’s beachside homes by way of example. (Mmmm… Wolverine. :D)

Monochromatic minimalism as styled by the Zanui team. Shop the look here.
Zanui Chloe 2.5 Seater Sofa, Black, Beaumont & Braddock Cube Concrete Square Side Table, NSW Leather Co. Sheepskin Animal Hide Rug, Pale GreyAmalia Chunky Weave Wool Rug, Black, and Amigos De Hoy leather cushions, available online at Zanui.


Space is the area within each room. Its boundaries define the limits within which you will work. It’s your frame. Space hosts all the other design elements. It circumscribes their relationships.

A no-brainer? Maybe. But space is more than just the square meters of your floor. This, alongside your ceiling height and shape, is your most basic consideration. Consider the entire volume of the space that you have to play with. For instance, cathedral ceilings create an entirely different sense of space to low or dropped ceilings.

rikrakstudiodotblogspotdotca Hanging terrariums from Maxwell & Williams
Make the most of your vertical space. L: Succulent wall feature (image sourced: R: Hanging terrariums from Maxwell & Williams, available online at Zanui

Vertical space is often overlooked. Introducing décor accents at different heights in your room (vertical gardens or simple macramé hanging plant baskets) increases its visual interest.

A La Mode Studio Monographic 3-Piece Gallery Wall Set
A La Mode Studio Monographic 3-Piece Gallery Wall Set, available online at Zanui


When you enclose space with lines, you create structures or shapes. These can be two or three-dimensional! How different shapes interact affects the degree of functionality and the style of your room. 🙂

Analyse the structures within your room. These present opportunities and place restrictions on what can be achieved in an interior.

A La Mode Studio Marble Mark Framed Print, Natural A La Mode Studio Fire Escape Framed Print
A La Mode Studio Marble Mark Framed Print, Natural and A La Mode Studio Fire Escape Framed Print, online at Zanui

Note the style of windows, the depth of the sills, the height and type of doors, and the materials used to construct the walls. Observe the finishing details of the floors, skirting boards, architraves, window surrounds, mullions (vertical bars between your  window frames) etc.

If you have a beautiful coffered ceiling, you might want to use long vertical lines in your décor and furniture to draw the eye up to see it. (This could be as simple as arranging a statement floral arrangement at eye-level on your mantlepiece – the flowers draw the gaze upwards.)

Interstil Century White Dining Table, Woody Dining Chairs and Jazz White 4 Door Cabinet
Interstil Century White Dining TableWoody Dining Chairs and Jazz White 4 Door Cabinet, available online at Zanui

Looking at your windows and how the light behaves within this space will also inform how you use it.

Wolverine is moving to Bondi (image sourced- smhdotcomdotau) Miranda Kerr's home (image sourced- voguedotcomdotau)
Wolverine is moving to Bondi (image sourced: whilst Miranda calls Malibu home (image sourced:

Wolverine vs the Supermodel

A quick comparison of the seaside homes of the delicious Hugh Jackman and all-round darling Miranda Kerr says all this sans words. We’re looking at how the sense of space is played out…

H Jackman
Hugh Jackman’s Bondi pad (image sourced:

Hugh Jackman reportedly picked up this stunning new Bondi penthouse for a sweet $6 million back in March this year (roughly around the same time as he was saving lives in a rip on the self-same beach).

Hugh Jackman's Bondi pad 2 Hugh Jackman's Bondi pad
Clean lines and high-end organic materials make this luxurious space work. Images sourced:

The apartment makes the most of its floor-to-ceiling seismic sea views with clean lines in its interior architecture and furniture: low sofa, low coffee table, a breakfast bar that neatly houses its barstools. The style of lighting is understated, and the palette neutral – the breathtaking view is the main event with marbled vertical wall panels to match nature’s unparalleled beauty.

It’s a minimalist approach. This has been styled for sale rather than to unfurrow the Wolverine’s brow. No doubt he + Deb will make it their own…

Images sourced pursuitistdotin

Miranda Kerr with her collection for Royal Albert, available online at Zanui. (Images sourced:

By contrast, former Victoria’s Secret model turned homewares designer Miranda Kerr’s beachside property is positively cosy. It set her back a cool $2.8 million when she acquired it in 2014 post Orlando.

It comes complete with lush gardens, ocean views and a vegie patch with strawberries. Envious much? We are.

Miranda Kerr's home (image sourced- voguedotcomdotau) 2
Miranda Kerr‘s Malibu home (image sourced:

Kerr is a nature-lover, as shown in her butterfly, peony and pastel-charged collection for Royal Doulton. Her house is designed to draw the outside in.

With its pristine white walls, light sofas and vaulted ceiling, it has a spacious feel enhanced with heartbreaking views of the Pacific Ocean. Light spills in through the paned glass wall of windows. But Kerr’s home plays with vertical space in a smart way, giving it an inviting feel.

Miranda Kerr's home (image sourced- voguedotcomdotau) 4
Bright colour pops win our hearts in Miranda Kerr’s home (image sourced:

The Ann Sacks limestone fireplace showcases stone boulders on its hearth from the home’s original mid-century design. It blends in with built-in bookshelves and cabinetry. Your eyes are drawn to the room’s bright colour pops in its statement wall art, books and cushions.

The rattan and rope pendant light becomes a feature through its central position and striking contrasting texture.

Miranda Kerr's home (image sourced- voguedotcomdotau) 3 20cm Rose Bowl from the Miranda Kerr for Royal Albert collection. Image sourced voguedotcomdotau.
Nature embraces the house, ever-present whether you’re inside or out. (Image sourced:

“I’ve had the house feng-shuied, I’ve had it blessed, I’ve had it doused, I’ve had it checked for electromagnetic fields, I ‘sage’ all the time,” Miranda confides.*

It looks pretty perfect to us! But what do you think? Who gets your vote? The X-Man or the model… And how did you like their use of space? 😀

*As quoted in Vogue.

Kay is a feature, blog and copywriter. She collects empty jam jars, academic degrees and tawdry dreams in the hopes of turning them into something useful someday. Her work has been published in ACP magazines, ABC fiction, Overland, Brittle Star, Seizure, trade publications and online forums. Her creative writing has won several awards.