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How to renovate in Parisian Style

Updated: Nov 19, 2022

If you love Parisian style and you are planning a renovation, voilà! This blog is for you!

Learn the four key elements needed to transform a Perth home interior into a Parisian chic dream!

Renovation or Styling?

Decorating and styling is fun! But this blog is not about quick fixes and superficial styling, such as throwing rugs and cushions around with Paris written on them. Not that there is anything wrong with that....To be honest though, styling is just the icing on the " torte" - Pardon my French...

Nevertheless, this post is about a Parisian renovation. So let us for a moment go back a few paces to the foundation and analyze the existing home's anatomy.

-Voici pourquoi here's why as we say in English.

Interior Designer Perth Despina Design
Despina Design Project - Click image for more

Parisians have the knack of blending periods and styles successfully

Generally, Perth home interiors are devoid of architectural features. Renovations usually take this trend to a whole new level, as the objective is to strip everything to a bare minimum. White walls, no skirtings, flash doors, shadow line in lieu of cornice etc. which work for contemporary minimalist design in some cases.

But you are after a Parisian renovation, right?

If you imagine, the Parisian style furniture and homewares will do the "trick", your interior may end up like a beautiful showroom of Parisian furniture and nothing more.

In reality, a true Parisian transformation is more than just furniture and styling.

Thus, let's disengage from local norms, and delve into the Parisian interiors, to find answers to these questions:

- How do Parisians design their interiors?

-Do they all furnish them with gild Luis canapés and arm chairs?

-Are all Parisian home interiors similar?

-What defines the Parisian style?

- How can we emulate it?

In short, the answer is, Parisians have mastered the art of elegantly balancing modern design with antique, old with new.

They express their own style through their interiors and set trends- not follow them. In Paris you see Parisian / modern, bohemian, traditional, palatial, and very much eclectic. Yet all, are unmistakably Parisian!

A Wix image of an eclectic Parisian interior
A Wix image of a Parisian bedroom

Which Parisian style are you?

The more we look into the 'Parisian style' the more we realize the term is broad, due to the fact Parisian interiors are diverse, not copies of each other, neither are all furnished with gild Luis furniture. Some are modern, some traditional, transitional and so on.

So, which Parisian style are you? It doesn't matter right now, because whatever style furnishings you choose, what makes an interior "Parisian" is the interior architecture. - This is one of the main denominators.

For this reason, think in terms of, shell first, furniture later.

From client who received our consultation and implemented our recommendations.

The big four...

Tranforming the shell or the house's interior architecture, is what a Parisian renovation is truly all about. This can be achieved by observing and implementing the following big four key elements correctly.

  1. Architectural features

  2. Color palette

  3. Elegance

  4. Simplicity

Let's go through them one by one.

A Wix image of a modern Parisian Apartment Interior

Architectural features

  • High ceiling

  • Parquetry flooring

  • Cornice - classic

  • Skirting

  • Ceiling rosette

  • Door classic profile & molding

  • Tall windows

  • Wainscot

  • Curving staircase

  • Classic floor to ceiling paneling

Architectural features form the foundation of the Parisian interior design and are pivotal to the success of a Parisian renovation, as they set the tone of the Parisian style you love.

Facture these into your renovation plan, well before you start. These are not an appendix, afterthought, or a decoration, but the foundation of your Parisian style renovation.

The principles of elegance and simplicity play a crucial role, as not all the above features can be implemented in every home.

If for example, you have standard height ceilings, make your windows as tall as possible.

Try to use at least three to four of the recommended architectural features.

It would not be detrimental to omit some from the list provided, as long as the combinations you choose are correct. I recommend consulting with your interior designer on this, as it is difficult achieving fine balance when you are working within the constraints of the existing structure.


Color palette

Color, is the second key element, for an unmistakably Parisian interior.

We see monochromatic schemes, using subdued colors, such as blue greys, warm greys, greys, warm linen, chalky whites. Also, certain muted blue/green hues, combined with citrine, or ruby work like gems.

Wall color does not dominate but rather, becomes a complementary backdrop to the beautiful textures and patterns of the furnishings.

For entrance and balcony doors, railings, curtain rods etc. black is a great choice as it creates contrast and drama.



Parisian style is a study in simplicity and minimalism. There is nothing overpowering or stuffy about it. A Parisian interior "breaths", because it is not overwhelmed with much furniture.

When it comes to wall art, do what Parisians do. Choose one or two large art pieces, but don't do frames on every wall. Tall empty walls are a typical feature of a Parisian interior.

Window treatments are simple, tall soft and elegant, without pelmets.

Ornaments may be classic or futuristic but never prolific.

A Wix image of an elegant Parisian dining room


Elegance and simplicity are dance partners. Different, yet compatible. One could also say, simplicity is elegance, because too many elegant pieces plonked together, look like the markets....

This principle is fundamental when it comes to furnishing and styling your Parisian renovation. We already know "less is best". But now let's think how elegance is bliss!

Parisians, are not shy about mixing styles nor about adding big statement pieces of elegance to their rooms. They will choose a majestic chandelier, for their living or dining room and not necessarily one that echos the architectural style, but one that holds it own with in it.

In Parisian homes a mid -century modern or more contemporary chandelier, hangs unapologetically, from an ornate ceiling rosette.

Area rugs are bold and exotic, no matter what the style.

This the eclecticism Parisians are know for, and this is chic!

Parisians also go for quality not quantity which is the very definition of elegance.

A Wix image of modern Parisian Decor

Recommended books

A broad cross-section of interiors, this book brings together a selection of over 50 apartments in Paris, chosen purely for their individuality. Hey include the apartments of cele....

Here, designer David Jimenez inspires us with his elegant French interiors while sharing his secrets for how to decorate like a Parisian.

Guillaume de Laubier takes us behind closed doors inside the homes of the most respected designers and artists in the city, to discover the rich diversity of Parisian style. These interiors are rife with inspiration: from ...


In conclusion - think ten..

  1. Think Parisian - when you renovate in Perth.

  2. Think shell first - interior architectural features and color are key.

  3. Think simplicity and elegance - when making selections.

  4. Think interior designer - if you get stack to avoid mistakes.

  5. Think eclectic - old with new, modern with antique, is chic.

  6. Think best is less - let the room breath

  7. Think quality - not quantity.

  8. Think elegance is bliss - large statement pieces of quality say it best.

  9. Think trend setter - not trend follower and express your lifestyle.

  10. Think Parisian renovation - c’est magnifique!



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