Pacific Northwest Style: Architecture and Interiors

Pacific Northwest Style has its own set of rules, mainly because it needs to compensate for the rainy days, gray skies and lack of light during the long winter months. Interiors and architecture are designed with the purpose of brightening the surroundings and giving people the cozy comfort they need on cloudy days. For year round style, the many uses of wood seem to be a dominant feature. This style is considered casual, laid-back, rustic and even a bit bohemian.

To achieve your perfect PNW style, these significant characteristics are a start.


Image sourced from Home Building plans

Sustainability: Pacific Northwest style is very eco-friendly. The use of reclaimed lumber and native materials, including rocks, are great ways to capture true PNW style. These products also provide natural textures, organic shapes, cohesive tones and organic shades to your space.

Cover areas: As we all know, there can be many rainy days in the PNW. With this in mind, many architects and interior designers incorporate covered outside areas with fireplaces for families to enjoy a relaxing evening outside with a hot drink and a cozy quilted blanket.

Floor to ceiling windows: PNW style incorporates floor to ceiling windows in newer homes to provide the family with as much natural light as possible and the most enchanting surrounding view with a connection to the outdoors. This brings the natural beauty of the outside into the house. Designers also include private and cozy spaces to share quiet time and special moments.

A touch of industrial: The use of high ceilings and exposed beams gives a sense of industrial architecture. The use of unaltered unfinished materials and wood or brick walls also creates a welcoming, laid back feeling that’s characteristic of Pacific Northwest style.

Blend into landscape: For this style it is very important not to disrupt Mother Nature and to blend the design into the landscape so it looks as natural as possible. The use of clean lines, lumber and native materials can create cohesiveness with the surroundings, enhancing the beauty of the landscape.

Deep overhangs and High Ceilings: This is a very interesting characteristic of the PNW and other wet climates. Deep roof overhangs help protect the house exterior, windows, doors and foundation from water runoff and bad weather. They can also keep family and friends dry while at the entry. High ceilings allow more winter light to get inside the structure, keeping it warm during the cold months.


Goodrich Haze Oak Engineered Flooring
Goodrich Haze Oak

Hardwood Floors: PNW design uses hardwood floor as much as possible. As wood is a natural material, it brings a lovely feeling of the outdoors inside. Depending on your taste, you can choose from a variety of colors, with tones of gray being the current trend nowadays. You can also choose a rustic finish or smoother surface. If you want to know more about your options, you can download our catalogue here or request samples here.

Open floor plans: By having an open plan and reducing the visual barriers, your interior will look more spacious, larger and more welcoming. This layout is also great for entertainment, giving you and your guests a much more enjoyable venue.

Casual and welcoming interiors: PNW style is very laid-back and casual. Forget about over-the-top choices and materials! Pacific Northwest natives love nature and keep true to their roots by having welcoming interiors and adding organic shapes with natural finishes.

House plants: Having plants at home brings many benefits to your health and mood. They can help you reduce stress, improve concentration, increase productivity, boost your mood and improve air quality. PNW is a very green culture. The people enjoy hiking, walking and enjoying the outdoors as much as possible. In the winter months, they like having a piece of the outdoor nature in their homes. Popular indoor plants that work well with PNW interior design are succulents, cactus, air plants and palms.

Cool colors with accents of warm colors: For the PNW where winters can be dull and grey, we have great color ideas to decorate your house. Think about cool colors and materials like light blues, greys, beiges and greens for furniture. You can then add accents of warms colors with cushions, paintings, rugs and blankets. You can also come up with different looks depending on the season, all you need is different color palettes for the accent products to create a whole different experience.

Wood as accent features: Dare to be different. You can easily make a statement with a wood accent like a wall, a carved natural coffee table or a designed wood dining table. Reclaimed and live edge wood can make furniture into conversation pieces.

Wall accent color: You don’t need to paint a whole room in one solid color to make it look special, try painting just one wall to create a wow factor! But remember, if you are painting a wall in a dark hue, don’t forget to add light touches and warm wood textures.

Natural products: Natural products are very popular in the Pacific Northwest style. The use of wood and concrete for furniture, floors, windows, countertops and stairs is becoming more common. Wood has always been a PNW staple in architecture but has evolved into practically a must-have feature in most homes.

We would love to hear from you! Contact us with any questions, suggestions or comments.