The Alternative/Indie Archetype: Decor

The Alternative/Indie Archetype: Decor

Looking inward for our last column, we’ll be appreciating our indoor decor and personal aesthetic choices. For those seeking the great title of Alternative (Alt)/Indie, the final step comes through decorating one’s personal space. When we spend time considering the ways we present ourselves externally (e.g. tattoos and piercings) or the things that we discuss or partake in (e.g. music and tarot), we must also consider our physical spaces. The spaces that we occupy give us another chance to display our own ideas.

When looking at our own indoor spaces, we can consider many aspects. The first of which is the layout of the room. The amount of space that is occupied by desks, coffee tables or chairs can affect the space in the room. The colors on the walls affect the way a space can feel. If one isn’t careful however, a single dark wall can make the room feel smaller. Considering the space and the way it feels is essential to crafting one’s ideal aesthetic. 

Making use of lighting or adding lighting is one of the first places to start. If a room is too dark, no art or other items put upon display can truly shine; unless of course they are glow-in-the-dark. With lighting determining how cheerful or relaxing the room feels, we can now focus on the items to fill the room with.

For example, my room is decorated with very minimal artwork pieces一it is peppered with sticky notes, small posters and sketchbook pages. To add lighting, I have a stolen “open” sign from a Subway and fairy lights. Each of these aspects helps to establish a cluttered and curious energy. The street signs populating my walls assist in reflecting light, which opens the space, along with adding to the clutter.

In any room, artwork can help to determine the mood and provide a glimpse of the owner’s mentality. The posters which adorn my walls help to display my favorite music and strange movie interests. Any visitors are immediately informed upon my strange niche love for cult classic movies and “Glass Animals”.

Along with making me feel more at home within my own space, the strange accessories allow for great assumptions to be made about me. The scattering of strange items, none of which seem to go together (inflatable palm trees, singing fish and a Captain America backpack) helps to invoke a sense of wonder一or horror.

In order to help others understand who you are and what makes you, your environment must mimic all of this. The sheer number of preconceptions provided from each of these objects helps to explain much of my thoughts. This allows for my preposterous thoughts that I say aloud to make slightly more sense. An interest in niche art and cult classics helps to define the Alt/Indie motif.

Once the decor itself has been chosen, addressing color palettes is essential. Knowledge of color wheels helps. Typically, two complementary colors go well with one that stands out more in contrast. For example, a light brown complemented by a cream could help a lime green to truly pop. In my room, I rely on light greens and oranges from street signs to stand out in contrast to my hot pink chair. 

Along with tying together paint colors, plant life can help to make one appear more Alt/Indie. Plants have taken up a curious role within this societal niche, as most Alt/Indie folks are nature enthusiasts. These avid outdoorsmen have many different options for plants, helping to diversify their appearances. Here, the benefit of a plant extends past its lovely color it can add, also including fresh oxygen to improve cognition.

Displaying one’s tattoos and piercings is one way to display your devotion towards the archetype upon your person. Setting up a physical space that exemplifies the rest of your thoughts no matter your appearance continues to speak of your character. Keeping your music playing loudly and your tarot deck on hand, you can quickly and easily embody the Alternative/Indie persona you so desperately strive towards.