Period Styles: Rococo

Rococo period style

Rococo style was characterised by lightness, delicacy and elaborate ornamentation, beginning around Louis XV’s (1715-74) reign of France and influenced by the famous courtesan Madame de Pompadour. Rococo style was developed by craftspeople and designers, with hand-worked decoration given importance.

The Rococo movement affected a wide variety of arts including interior design, architecture, painting, sculpture, music and literature. A reaction against the grandeur and symmetry of the Baroque style, Rococo style was ornate and featured light colours with gold being a key feature.

Architectural decoration was based on arabesques, shells, elaborate curves and asymmetry. One of the basic motifs of Rococo design is the acanthus leaf.

Well known examples of Rococo buildings include the Catherine Palace in Russia, the Charlottenburg Palace in Germany and elements of the Chateau de Versailles in France. Famous names include Thomas Chippendale, who designed furniture in the Rococo style.

Rococo interiors had playful themes and were designed as works of art, featuring ornamental mirrors, small sculptures and beautiful furniture to create incredible lavishness. The colour palette was soft and pale, with features such as asymmetrical sweeps and curves picked out in metallic paints. Colours such as Beauvais Cream, Pompadour and Wedgwood Lilac were very popular.

So if you want to recreate a Rococo look, to sum it up in one word, the key is luxury!

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