This website uses cookies to improve your experience navigating our site. By continuing to browse, you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

OK, I understand

Welcome Back Functional Simplicity + Primary Hues With Bauhaus Revival Style

Interiors

‘Timeless style’ is something we all strive to achieve in our homes, yet it’s still all too common to see fleeting trends come and go. One enduring style, or rather institution, is Bauhaus design. The 100-year-old movement remains fresh and relevant in architecture and interiors today, and right now it’s enjoying a revival.

Simple colour schemes (let’s talk about red!), pared-back ornamentation, chrome, glass and clean lines are all part of the Bauhaus Revival look – here’s how to nail this style at home!

28th March, 2022

Bauhaus style is renowned for allowing function to dictate form. It’s what separates this timeless design from the rest. Photo from – Bibliostyle: How We Live at Home with Books by Nina Freudenberger, published by Hardie Grant Books, RRP $50, available in stores nationally.

Primary colours come to the fore in Bauhaus, and thus Bauhaus Revival, style. Design by Corinne Mathern Studios. Photo – Laure Joliet.

Clean lines and simple forms are key. Photo from – Bibliostyle: How We Live at Home with Books by Nina Freudenberger, published by Hardie Grant Books, RRP $50, available in stores nationally.

Bauhaus style encourages the use of primary hues on a large scale. Here, the bright yellow ceiling dominates but doesn’t overwhelm the space. Design by Other Architects. Photo – Clinton Weaver.

Repeated geometric forms in artwork and furniture is another key element to nailing this look at home. Photo – Neal Beckstedt Studio.

Red is a Bauhaus colour – not rust, nor terracotta – bright, cherry red. Hay Matin wall light in bright red. Photo – Hay.

A primary blue couch works seamlessly alongside a red metal coffee table with glass top to illustrate how Bauhaus Revival can work at home. Hay Kofi coffee table in red. Hay Quilton sofa. Photo – Hay.

Simple colour schemes and pared-back ornamentation are key to succeeding in Bauhaus Revival style, with the underlying rule that functionality gets to dictate the form. Photo – Amelia Stanwix for The Design Files.

The foundation of this style championed the use of basic materials such as concrete, steel, chrome and glass for furniture design and architecture so that there was no excess. Photo – Lillie Thompson.

Clean lines combined with primary hues and graphic patterns are classic Bauhaus. Add in comfortable boucle fabric and a few curves for a new take on Bauhaus. Photo – Rachael Smith for Owl Design.

Bauhaus Revival adapts the iconic Bauhaus look with less severity and a more relaxed approach. Photo – Nicolette Johnson.

Metal and leather are a classic pairing. Photo – Nicolette Johnson.

The Wassily chair is a classic Bauhaus design. Photo – Eve Wilson.

Lauren Li
Monday 28th March 2022

‘We’re not skirting around here by using rust, maroon or pink, it’s full-on cherry red people, so buckle in!’

The Bauhaus movement started over one hundred years ago, which is remarkable when you consider how relevant and fresh Bauhaus architecture and design still feels today. So much so, that right now we are seeing a renaissance of Bauhaus characteristics in interior design. I, for one, am here for it!

Simple colour schemes and pared-back ornamentation are key to succeeding in Bauhaus Revival style, with the underlying rule that functionality gets to dictate the form. This style operates on the understanding that excess flourishes and ornamentation are unnecessary to make things ‘more beautiful’.

Bauhaus celebrates pure forms, clean design, and functionality. The foundation of this style championed the use of basic materials such as concrete, steel, chrome and glass for furniture design, and pared back architecture without any unnecessary decoration. There was an emphasis on the smart use of materials, well before ideas of sustainable design became a ‘thing’.

Many of the ideas written in the Bauhaus Manifesto (there aren’t enough manifestos written these days!) by Walter Gropius in 1919 have been so embedded in art and design culture today that it is impossible to imagine a world without the Bauhaus movement.

From the sparseness of 90s minimalism, clever mid-century modern to the boldness of the Memphis movement, we can thank the Bauhaus movement for shaping design as we know it.

Red is a Bauhaus Colour

We haven’t seen red used in interiors for decades, so it is fair to feel a little trepidation (or be downright terrified) of how to use this strong colour again. We’re not skirting around here by using rust, maroon or pink, it’s full-on cherry red people, so buckle in!

Bauhaus style uses red in a sophisticated way alongside other clean primary colours and industrial materials. You may want to be careful with combining all of the primary colours (red, yellow and blue) together because before you realise it, your living room could start to resemble the set of Playschool (no offence to Jemima and Little Ted).

To avoid this happening, layer the colour against natural wood tones instead of a stark white backdrop. Keep in mind that it works well to use two of the primary colours together, instead of all three.

Using red in an interior again feels fresh, as we haven’t seen it for so long. It gives an air of confidence and presents as fashion-forward.

Adding a red cushion for a ‘pop of colour’ isn’t going to work here because it feels disjointed, there needs to be a few instances of red used in the space for it to connect. For instance, a red light fitting and red seen in an artwork, or a red side table and red in a floor rug, so that the red looks intentional.

Furniture

Compared to furniture from the preceding Victorian era, which was full of overstuffed flourishes that ransacked from Gothic, Tutor and basically any other period before it, Bauhaus was truly original. It didn’t look back, only forward.

When Marcel Breuer designed the Wassily chair, it must have been quite a shocking concept to sit in a chair made from tubular steel. Marcel Breuer conceived of using this, then unconventional material whilst riding his bike and observing the handlebars. He took the traditional form of an overstuffed club chair and simplified it down until it was just an outline, with a canvas seat, back and arms. It stands alone today as a classic design that upholds the Bauhaus conceptual ideals and at the same time is elegant and comfortable.

Bauhaus, now

Bauhaus Revival combines a hint of industrial style combined with comfort. This is not about living in a museum with pieces designed during the Bauhaus movement; rather it is about embodying the spirit of the time. It’s optimistic, design-led, pared-back and forward-thinking.

This time we’re adapting this look with less severity and a more relaxed approach.

Heavy wooden furniture does not belong in this look, instead look for low-slung armchairs made from tubular chrome, combined with leather upholstery or woven cane mesh and glass coffee tables.

Graphic artwork is another key to nailing Bauhaus Revival style, along with colour blocking, instead of pattern, and clean lines, always.

This Week

1.58

One Room Wonders

Before + After: An Arty + Eclectic Kids Bedroom Transformation

See how we transformed a simple space into a fun and colourful kids bedroom (in just one week!) with Surround by Laminex.

On The Market

Sigrid Thornton’s Amazing Inner-Melbourne Compound Is For Sale!

SeaChange actress Sigrid Thornton is selling her North Melbourne family property, comprising a converted stables, terrace, and garden.

Studio Visit

Why The Internet Is In Love With Libby Haines’ Beautiful Still-Life Paintings

Melbourne artist Libby Haines' works are a wonderfully messy reflection of everyday life - and they sell out on Instagram within seconds!
Christina Karras

News

Visit A New Art Precinct Celebrating Melbourne’s First Nations History

Browse sculptures, installations and projections by renowned artists Reko Rennie, Yhonnie Scarce and more in a new public art walk!
Christina Karras

Homes

A Very 'Melbourne' Warehouse Renovation In Fitzroy’s Former Chocolate Factory

Lauren Bruce and Hannah McNeill have turned this Fitzroy warehouse apartment into a warm and personalised home.

News

Ecology's First Bedding Collection Is A Dreamy Celebration Of Spring

The Australian homewares brand have released their first ever bedding collection, featuring vibrant floral prints and classic colour ways!
Sponsored

News

Eva’s New Dining Range Is Sustainably Designed For Everyday Life!

Australian furniture brand Eva debuts their beautiful new dining table and chairs that will become the hub of your home for years to come.
Sponsored

Architecture

A Classic 1960s Australian Beach Cabin, Renovated With Soul

A sympathetic makeover of an original beach shack by Lian prioritises its special place in Anglesea, on Victoria's surf coast.

A Day In The Life

A Day In The Life With Zara McDonald + Michelle Andrews, Of Shameless

The podcast hosts and media powerhouses behind Shameless share an inside look at their day, running one of Australia's biggest podcasts!
Christina Karras

Interiors

A Contemporary Extension For A Much-Loved Warrandyte Family Home

A sustainable family home addition by Sanctum Homes in Warrandyte, Melbourne embraces its surrounding bush landscape.

News

Save The Date For Design Show Australia Sydney

Calling all designers! The annual Design Show Australia is one of our favourite trade shows of the year, and it’s taking place next month....
Sponsored

Gardens

A Thoughtful Garden Championing Nature In The Inner-City

Sam Cox Landscapes brings a sense of the Australian bush to this Fitzroy North home thanks to a clever mix of native plants and established
Christina Karras

Interiors

Inside A Striking Two-Storey Addition, Hidden Behind A Heritage Facade

To accommodate their client's need for more space, Altereco has designed a contemporary two-storey addition that lies discreetly behind a be...

News

Ben Waters Unveils His Latest Solo Show, ‘Landscapes Within’

See Ben Waters’ latest solo show of captivating landscapes at Balgowlah’s Sydney Road Gallery, open now!
Sponsored

Art

10 Artists Transform Discarded Archaeological Fragments In New Exhibition, 'Unearthed'

Discarded fragments from the Metro Tunnel dig in Melbourne are given new life in Craft Victoria's new exhibition, 'Unearthed'.

Similar Stories

Interiors

Getting Your 'Grandmillennial' On!

It's a little bit grandma, but with a contemporary twist....'grandmillennial' style brings the comfort and nostalgia we're all craving, and
Lauren Li

Interiors

What Is An ‘LA Retro Eclectic’ Interior, And How Do I Get It?

Textural surfaces + chunky furniture + primary colours = the hottest new interiors trend. Lauren Li breaks down this distinct look for us!
Lauren Li

Interiors

An Art Director's Effortless Apartment In A Former Spinning Mill

Art director Marsha Golemac's Collingwood apartment is striking in its dedication to simplicity.
Bea Taylor

This Week

On The Market

Sigrid Thornton’s Amazing Inner-Melbourne Compound Is For Sale!

SeaChange actress Sigrid Thornton is selling her North Melbourne family property, comprising a converted stables, terrace, and garden.

News

Visit A New Art Precinct Celebrating Melbourne’s First Nations History

Browse sculptures, installations and projections by renowned artists Reko Rennie, Yhonnie Scarce and more in a new public art walk!
Christina Karras
1.58

One Room Wonders

Before + After: An Arty + Eclectic Kids Bedroom Transformation

See how we transformed a simple space into a fun and colourful kids bedroom (in just one week!) with Surround by Laminex.

News

Eva’s New Dining Range Is Sustainably Designed For Everyday Life!

Australian furniture brand Eva debuts their beautiful new dining table and chairs that will become the hub of your home for years to come.
Sponsored

Art

10 Artists Transform Discarded Archaeological Fragments In New Exhibition, 'Unearthed'

Discarded fragments from the Metro Tunnel dig in Melbourne are given new life in Craft Victoria's new exhibition, 'Unearthed'.

News

Save The Date For Design Show Australia Sydney

Calling all designers! The annual Design Show Australia is one of our favourite trade shows of the year, and it’s taking place next month....
Sponsored

Architecture

A Classic 1960s Australian Beach Cabin, Renovated With Soul

A sympathetic makeover of an original beach shack by Lian prioritises its special place in Anglesea, on Victoria's surf coast.

Studio Visit

Why The Internet Is In Love With Libby Haines’ Beautiful Still-Life Paintings

Melbourne artist Libby Haines' works are a wonderfully messy reflection of everyday life - and they sell out on Instagram within seconds!
Christina Karras

Gardens

A Thoughtful Garden Championing Nature In The Inner-City

Sam Cox Landscapes brings a sense of the Australian bush to this Fitzroy North home thanks to a clever mix of native plants and established
Christina Karras

Interiors

A Contemporary Extension For A Much-Loved Warrandyte Family Home

A sustainable family home addition by Sanctum Homes in Warrandyte, Melbourne embraces its surrounding bush landscape.

News

Ben Waters Unveils His Latest Solo Show, ‘Landscapes Within’

See Ben Waters’ latest solo show of captivating landscapes at Balgowlah’s Sydney Road Gallery, open now!
Sponsored

News

Ecology's First Bedding Collection Is A Dreamy Celebration Of Spring

The Australian homewares brand have released their first ever bedding collection, featuring vibrant floral prints and classic colour ways!
Sponsored

Interiors

Inside A Striking Two-Storey Addition, Hidden Behind A Heritage Facade

To accommodate their client's need for more space, Altereco has designed a contemporary two-storey addition that lies discreetly behind a be...

A Day In The Life

A Day In The Life With Zara McDonald + Michelle Andrews, Of Shameless

The podcast hosts and media powerhouses behind Shameless share an inside look at their day, running one of Australia's biggest podcasts!
Christina Karras

Homes

A Very 'Melbourne' Warehouse Renovation In Fitzroy’s Former Chocolate Factory

Lauren Bruce and Hannah McNeill have turned this Fitzroy warehouse apartment into a warm and personalised home.

Similar Stories

Interiors

Getting Your 'Grandmillennial' On!

'Grandmillennial' style brings the comfort and nostalgia we're all craving, and Lauren Li tells us how to get it!
Lauren Li

Interiors

What Is An ‘LA Retro Eclectic’ Interior, And How Do I Get It?

Lauren Li breaks down all the elements of the hottest new interiors trend, and how to achieve it.
Lauren Li

Interiors

An Art Director's Effortless Apartment In A Former Spinning Mill

Art director Marsha Golemac's Collingwood apartment is striking in its dedication to simplicity.
Bea Taylor

The Design Files acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the lands on which we work, the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin Nation. We pay our respects to Elders past and present.

First Nations artists, designers, makers, and creative business owners are encouraged to submit their projects for coverage on The Design Files. Please email bea@thedesignfiles.net