February 10, 2010

The Metalhead’s Guide to Interior Decorating

Krieg It Yourself, Tr00 Metal Life

I’ve had a few questions from readers asking how CDH and I decorate our home. I wasn’t entirely certain why anyone would want to know this, but I’ve discovered aging (read, over 20) metalheads decorating their first homes and wanting something more than the old beer can pyramid in the living room.

CDH and I like a “laid-back Viking” style – lots of ancient treasures everywhere, but not a full-on “welcome to the longhouse, please wipe your feet” experience. Of course, we will be able to go crazy when we build our own place, but that’s a few years away yet.


One of our bookshelves. You can see my Egyptian thingies, the clay pot from a kebab shop in Cappadocia (the kebab was INSIDE the pot), the candle we lit at out wedding, and a bunch of books we like to read

Aside from black, my favorite colors are red and orange, and CDH’s favorite color is sea-green. We keep a dark palette of colors, because I prefer to be in dark rooms (light-sensitive, you see, like a vampire) and darkness ist krieg. We have wooden floors, which look awesome but are a bitch to look after, so we’ve covered them with heaps of multi-colored rugs. I love how it makes our lounge look like one of those alleyway antique shops.

We have too many books, so we had to buy more bookshelves, which double as knick knack stands. Sooooo many knick knacks.


I made this dreamcatcher. I collected the duck feathers from beside a pond while on holiday.

My office (which I haven’t taken pictures in yet because it is a MESS) is decorated with inspiring paper ephemera, including fantasy greeting cards by Ann Sudeworth from Avebury in England, a lace duck card from Bruges, and a personalized WANTED posted and box I made in the printing room at MOTAT. CDH’s office is decorated with transformers and train books.

So, that’s what we do. What about you?


More of our bookshelves. Here we have a celtic cross, a small display of my fossil / bone / stone collection, our wedding album, and an Aladdin lamp CDH brought me in Syria

Heavy Metal Décor is what you want it to be – if you think heavy metal décor is tiger-striped rugs, black leather couches and 80s kitsch, then you’ve created yourself a metal haven. If you liken a metal interior design to a minimalist black and red design with elliptical lampshades and a dining room table so shiny you could play air hockey on it, then metal it up my minimalist friend!

I believe your house should be filled with objects and colors and details which make you happy. You should walk in the door and just smile. And because you are a person with very specific tastes, your home tends to become full of things you like, and this creates a cohesive style without you needing to think about it.


My perfume, brought from Egypt. I have this displayed in the bathroom. Don't you just love the little bottle and the vial shaped like a camel?

What to look for: Old gig posters to frame, (I love reading I want your skull for truly unique gig poster artwork, straight from the artist themselves), horror film memorabilia, black and red and purple and gold, spikes, studs, eyelets, bondage features, ancient talismans, artifacts, skulls aplenty, natural fabrics in dark shades, leather and faux leather, Vikings, crosses (you can easily invert them, if you so choose), steampunk, Scandinavian and German design, metal inserts, metal everything, “alternative” artwork, old vinyl record sleeves, skulls, taxidermy, paper ephemera.


Viking Soap Dish. The BEST thing we brought back from Europe. Everytime people go to the bathroom they comment on it \m/


I painted both these viking ships. I am working on making prints so others can have their very own Steff Metal viking ship.


CDH's office guardians

Visit: second-hand and thrift shops, alleyway antique shops, swap meets and car-boot fairs, fabric sales and hippy craft fairs, medieval markets and pagan festivals, eBay, the “classified” sections of metal forums. Scandi-design books.

Remember, interior design evolves over time. There’s no sense throwing everything in a room away and going out to buy a whole new set of furniture and “decoration”. It’s about spying that perfect painting in an artist market in Berlin, or sewing latex cushions while listening to Darkthrone. Your décor won’t be finished until you die, and even then you might return to rearrange the sofas.

So, what are your favorite aspects of your interior decorating? What items do you more hope to attain? What would be your dream room?

If people are keen and we get some ideas flowing I am happy to do more posts on this subject.


8 Comments on “The Metalhead’s Guide to Interior Decorating

March 18, 2013 at 6:40 am

i want a ’70s basement. dark wood paneling, green shag carpet, and some ugly couches. hang up some posters, and lay on the floor listening to NWOBHM through lousy speakers. it would be great.

February 3, 2013 at 10:26 am

I’m still in my rents house…. which kinda blows…. but I’m going ALL OUT on the first place I don’t have to follow decorating rules with… think…. like… the elements in power metal songs, coming to life….. Dragon sculptures, swords (battle worthy) on the walls, a real fireplace, even a DUNGEON!

Melissa Angelik
July 21, 2011 at 5:53 am

Awesome post, I love details like the Transformers autobots in your husbands office and the Viking ship soap dish.
I’ve been in a rental house for the last 10 months, and will be moving to Europe in less than 2 months, but I would love to bring my collection of beautiful teas with me (some in interesting canisters from around the world). Also, as soon as i can, i’m getting TONS of candles and twinkle lights to decorate my new place. I like a gothic and mystical touch to my decor.

February 12, 2010 at 7:03 pm

@ Kionon – I am selling prints of those viking paintings through my shop I’ve only got a small size listed so far, but I can do any sized print you like, matted or unmatted. That way, it would be cheaper than buying the original painting and the shipping would be really inexpensive, too. Shoot me an email at steff @ steffmetal DOT com if you’re still keen, and I’ll tell you the sizes and prices.

@ Carrie – Emily’s article always crack me up. Thanks for the link.

February 12, 2010 at 3:48 pm


I’d like one of your viking pictures… but how would you manage to ship it to Japan?

Details, details. :P

February 12, 2010 at 11:00 am

Saw this and thought of you:

Some of it’s stupid, but mostly it’s pretty fun. :)

Happy Valentine’s Day!

February 11, 2010 at 2:34 pm

Oooo, I love it! Especially the viking/antiquity theme – I have a lot of Norsey things about my apartment, but I haven’t been in long enough to really set up a particular look. Still, what a rad setup, and it looks like it incorporates a lot of personality and memories as well!

I’m trying to turn my 1BR into a sort of combination between horror/gigposter hell (the front room is covered in movie one-sheets and horror celeb autographs) and cozy antique shop – there was a place in Boston called Gargoyles that had the greatest look, like a morbid, musty attic full of treasures. It’s my biggest decorating inspiration. Here’s a mediocre shot of what the interior looked like if you’re curious, but it was usually a lot dimmer in there:

Now to figure out how to channel it losing my deposit! :)

February 11, 2010 at 5:04 am

Great post. I will be moving into my first home by the end of this year and I really want to make it a metalhead haven. You have given me some great ideas. Thanks! \m/

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