Style guide: Regency interior design

One of the things that makes Regency interior design appealing is its versatility and the premium feel it adds to a space.

The Regency style is all about being bold and luxurious as it’s a blend of Hollywood glam and classic elegance.

But how do you replicate this regal style in your home? Read on to find out more.

Where does Regency style come from?

Regency style is a British style of architecture and interior design that originated in the United Kingdom back in the early 19th century. 

It also sits under the more general Georgian style which you may be familiar with. This era saw the rise of private theatres and literary societies, which brought with them an increased interest in literature, fashion, and social activities.  

The Regency period was a time of rebirth and renewal in Britain, following the wars with France. This new age saw a return to elegance, with an emphasis on simple lines and classical details. 

It’s true what they say – history certainly repeats itself, as over the past few years we’ve seen a resurgence in regency interior design because of the likes of popular shows such as Bridgerton. 

Being the talk of the town once again, with the release of its newest season — and with this will likely come a surge of interest in a particular aesthetic you may have seen become popular over the past year: Regencycore. After the first season aired Google searches for Regency–inspired styles increased by a whopping +9500%.

Interior Stylist @ ScS, Vicki Foster
What is Regencycore?

So what exactly is Regencycore?

The Regencycore aesthetic is named after the Regency era, which took place in the U.K. and lasted for only 9 years from 1811 to 1820. 

During this time, Prince George IV was a regent, taking the throne in place of his father, King George III, who was ill. George IV represented glamour, elegance, culture and romantic liaisons. These then became the embodiment of the English Regency period.

Popular culture has reignited a love affair with anything Regencycore - you can now easily get yours hands on four poster beds and gold antique effect furniture.

How to achieve English Regency style

The Regency style is elegant and opulent and achieving this doesn’t have to be expensive.

There are many clever touches and accessories you can incorporate to enhance the grandeur of a room that even Her Majesty would approve of!

Regency style is a mix of colour and pattern with an abundance of shiny gold and dark wood accents all mixed together. The style is intricate but not dainty. It’s sturdy and exudes careful colour coordination and regal patterns.

Here's a list of things you can easily add to transform any space into the regency era.

  • Statues and figurines
  • Antique vases
  • Wall and floor mirrors to open up the space 
  • Wall sconces
  • Patterned or embossed wallpaper 
  • Traditional style picture frames
  • Antique clocks (if you have an old home) or contemporary wall clocks with ornate designs on them 
  • Lamps with a striking gold or silver base
  • Area rugs
  • Throw pillows
  • Candles 
  • Anything gold or silver (added gemstones are a bonus!)

You can also achieve Regency style through your choice of colour.

Regency style colours

When you think of regal properties and opulent colours, your mind leans towards darker and richer tones.

A bold mix of colours including rich reds and golds, layered with creams would be the first choice.

You could also go for a more modern colour pallet with light blues and pinks to achieve the style.

Our favourite regal colours:

  • Red
  • Gold
  • Cream
  • Blue
  • Purple
  • Green
  • Pink
How to achieve Regency style with fabrics

Now we know which colours scream regal, it’s time to turn to Regency fabrics. This era certainly has an emphasis on neutrals, white and ivory. We recommend using strong, bold fabrics like velvet, damask and silk due to their superiority and turn your home furnishings from drab to fab. 

Opt for fabrics with intricate patterns to add visual interest to any corner of your room – even if they’re just used on throw pillows or curtains. Many of our sofas come with beautiful patterned scatter cushions, such as our San Jose 3 Seater Sofa Scatter Back, which add to the look and appeal of the sofa, it can also help transform and transition your furniture throughout the seasons.

Drapes and wall hangings are also an essential element of any Regency interior. In the days before central heating, incorporating plenty of fabrics into your decor was a simple way to prevent rooms from becoming chilly.

In a modern home, this may no longer be a consideration, but an ornate set of curtains will help you achieve the same ambience. Aim for heavy, yet flowing drapery at windows with gold plaited tiebacks. 

Fringed rugs with floral patterns are exactly what you need to tie the room together.

Interior Stylist @ ScS, Vicki Foster
How to achieve Regency style with furniture

Regency style furniture is elegant and intricate you can use it to achieve the regency look in your home. Here are some furniture ideas:

  • Opt for upholstered furniture using strong, bold fabrics such as velvet
  • Check out recliners for your reading nook or somewhere to relax
  • Nothing says regal style like an elaborate chandelier, it’s all in the detail so don’t forget about your light fixtures
  • Chaise lounges are a must if they suit your existing décor, though we know in modern day homes this may be a bit much! Nevertheless, they’re perfect for resting while reading, taking a nap, or relaxing after a long day
  • Look out for wooden furniture made from mahogany and walnut as they offer an opulent feel 
  • Day beds and sofa beds are also very popular in this style of decorating because they can be used as an extra bed when you have guests over
  • Add some floral porcelain tableware to elevate your dining space 
  • Etched wine goblets served on a decorative tray would certainly add a royal touch to your side table
  • Chesterfield sofas and armchairs are another great option if you want to create the perfect old world feel throughout your home! They’ll add comfortability without sacrificing any elegance; that’s what makes them so versatile
  • Footstools are often upholstered and cushioned meaning they offer ultimate comfort so you can stretch out and provide extra legroom for your guests

The Regency era saw a move towards creating more intimate spaces, particularly the Regency style living room. Furniture was no longer carefully arranged around the room, but clustered around a table or fireplace where the family and their guests could relax and socialise. 

How to get the Regency style on a budget

There are more subtle ways of adding a little bit of grandeur to your home.

Console tables are an ideal piece to create a focal point in a hall or lounge. Panels of wallpaper are another excellent but sophisticated way of adding a stately feel to your home without being too extravagant. You could also add plaster mouldings and deep coving to walls and ceilings to add the final touches.

As mentioned, this era also saw a lot of gold or silver finishes on its furniture items for an opulent factor. This can be difficult to replicate in the modern world without spending a fortune (which may not be in your budget), but there are some affordable ways around this:

  • Try adding some gold accents on tables (e.g. candlesticks) or other small pieces of furniture 
  • Look to spray paint existing furniture gold or silver for a quick and simple revamp
  • Look for gold or silver-look furniture as this can still give you the same aesthetic without the price tag 
  • You can also use gold accents to add interest to your furniture pieces – for example by using gold-coloured accessories on tables or painting the legs of chairs with this colour
  • Silver and copper tones complement these neutral shades nicely when used sparingly as well
  • How about opting for a velvet sofa? This will certainly bring an air of luxe into your home. From our beautiful, statement Bloom range to our more understated Dynasty collection, you too can enjoy the luxury of velvet
Regency styling for interior design summary:
  • This era of interior design originated back to the early 19th century 
  • This bought with it a huge return to elegance, with an emphasis on simple lines and classical details during this time 
  • Silver and gold accents are one of the most effective ways to incorporate this style through your accents and accessories
  • Drapes, fringed rugs and wall hangings are just a few of the well-known Regency style pieces
  • Fabrics play a huge role in adding a luxe feel, particularly velvet, damask and chintz
  • So do colours – you can certainly keep it neutral and understated with ivory and neutrals or go for deep reds and metal accents for a more statement regal approach 
  • Lastly and most importantly, adding understated luxury into your home needn’t break the bank!

Hopefully you’re now feeling inspired to turn your home into a palace fit for royalty. 

Published: 16th May 2022