Interior Design Ideas to Revitalise Your Independent Café


THE UK’s hospitality industry is thriving, and a huge part of that industry is the humble coffee shop. Retail chains and independent venues alike stipple out high streets and local communities; of those that visit cafés, 80% do so at least once a week. Independents, in particular, have bloomed in recent years, as customers reject the curated sheen of the chain outlet for the unique personality of the owner- or family-run business. But achieving your personality in interior design is not easy. Here are some tips to help you realise your vision.

The Importance of Interior Design

Interior design is a vital part of putting together a commercial space of any kind, something that is especially true for hospitality venues. Cafés need to be a welcoming environment for new customers, and a comfortable one to encourage customers to stay. The interior design of your café will also go some way to defining its purpose; are you aiming your café at young professionals, or hoping to create a fun atmosphere for families to enjoy?

For chain coffee outlets, interior design can be used as an extension of their brand; meanwhile, independent coffee shops achieve their success through a personalised sense of taste that distinguishes them from the chains. Interior design is everything, from advert to experience, no matter your café’s business model.

Interior Design Tips to Grow Custom

Colour Scheme

Your café’s colour scheme is arguably the biggest factor in creating the atmosphere or ‘vibe’ you’re looking for. This colour scheme should be heavily dependent on your café’s purpose and target audience. Bright whites and vibrant blues are sleek and lend themselves especially well to daylight – making them a great choice for a café that seeks to position itself as a professional urban meeting place.

Meanwhile, darker and smokier colours are all the rage for creating cosy domestic spaces – something you can take full advantage of to craft a cosy aesthetic in your café. Chalky emulsion paints are a great way to achieve this, while bold patterned wallpapers can add an element of quirkiness to proceedings.

Wall Décor

The things with which you adorn your walls can say a lot about your direction as a business, and go a long way to contributing to your chosen theme or atmosphere aims. For a smaller, family-run affair, newspaper clippings and family photos are an endearing way to advertise your café’s origins; local artworks and hand-painted signs can help you establish yourself as a community-oriented affair, while colourful aluminium signage can create feelings of an artsy and creative atmosphere.


Lighting should complement your choice in colour scheme. Smoky or chalky colours diffuse warm lights in a pleasing way, making lamps a brilliant choice for creating cosy corners. Sleeker, more elegant colours pop with clear lighting, which can also benefit customers who are visiting your café to work.


The last pieces of the puzzle are your furniture choices. Again, your café’s function is a key factor here – large, luxurious sofas are fantastic for curating a casual, living-room atmosphere, while bar tables can better suit the ‘grab-and-go’ professional demographic. 

The latest stories