Five Ways to Create a Gender Neutral Room

Genderless, or gender neutral, design is having a moment. It’s something we’ve seen in fashion with Alessandro Michele’s collections for Gucci and talk-of-the-moment Vetements, as well as the likes of Damir Doma and Lemaire. It’s a look that’s gone beyond the boyfriend jean and is increasingly blurring the preconceived lines of traditional ‘masculine’ and ‘feminine’ style.

It’s not just fashion that is becoming ‘genderless’ either; we’re seeing more and more of it in interiors and homeware too. The influence of the typical Scandinavian aesthetic on the rest of the world is evident in the emergence of simple, quality design that chooses timelessness and subtle style over quick trends, so a move into gender neutrality seems only natural. A mix of masculine and feminine elements, this type of décor strips spaces of any stereotypes in favour of neutral pieces and colours that will please a number of tastes and won’t date; here are five ways to create a gender neutral room.

Choose Dark Colours

contrasting room

Image property of Bosthlm

Dark colours aren’t to be shied away from but can give a depth to a space. This room features a mixture of textures, pendant lighting and art to create a homely, personal feel, contrasting perfectly with the clean, dark and heavy furniture.

Use Raw Materials

industrial interior raw concrete

Image property of Fantastic Frank

Industrial elements such as steel and raw concrete give home spaces an edge; add soft furnishings and the odd accessory in neutral colours like this space to balance out the harshness.

Create Contrast

contrasting colours gender neutral room

Image by Jesper Florbrant for Esny

Balance out a room with contrasting colours, shapes and sizes. This bedroom features fresh white walls and pale wooden floors, using black furniture and bedding to add a masculine touch. Keeping art and accessories to a few select pieces ensures that the room is simple and not over-styled.

Use Large Furniture

large furnishings gender neutral room

Image by Jesper Florbrant for Esny

Go for a few pieces of big furniture, art and lighting that fill up the room rather than lots of small items that will clutter the space. Using a variety of similar colours and textures breaks up the room, without it looking too mismatched.

Add Vintage Details

vintage details gender neutral interior

Image property of Kvarteret Makleri

The best gender neutral rooms embrace modern design but a few vintage details add character. Look to mid-20th century pieces for clean lines and shapes in a wooden finish or olive tones to strike the balance between masculine and feminine.

Words by Angharad Jones

Sarah Atkinson

Sarah Atkinson

Writer and expert