The Evolution of Interior Design: Part 1, Ancient Origins

When did the discipline of interior design begin?

Perhaps it could have started with cave dwellers arranging pelts and drawing on cave walls. Maybe?

It is, however, the ancient Egyptians that are credited with first incorporating sophisticated design into their interiors. From mud huts to palaces, the Egyptians and other ancient civilizations took pride in the appearance of their homes.

The Egyptians were known for their use of bold colors and attention to detail in their design.

Under the direction of architects, artisans provided a designer’s role in these times. Interior design was not a separate discipline per se, and it was the ancient architects who specified the design of the furniture and décor. 

The Greeks, and later the Romans, made their respective marks on interior design history. Both civilizations are known to have beautified their homes with artistically crafted ornate furniture, vases, and fresco paintings.

Many of these elements are considered to be both sophisticated and timeless. Evidence of this is that these styles continue to be emulated in today’s interior design.—By Philip Holmes

Photo above: Drawings on the walls of the Magura Caves in Bulgaria are considered to be the most significant works of art of the European Post-Paleolithic era.