If you are a world traveler, you will definitely have had your eyes opened to the way people in other countries decorate and furnish their homes. You can take their ideas and ways of doing things and apply them to your own home to give your property an original and personal identity.

Western ideas

But why should you turn to other cultures for interior design ideas? Because by doing so, you will be able to achieve an interior that looks nothing like your neighbor’s, utilizing items that cannot be found in every main street store and colors that are out of the ordinary.

Using decorative items that you have brought back from your travels, or using a color scheme that comes from a vacation can help to bring back happy memories and inspire you in other areas of your life.

African art

Africa is a huge continent and offers a wide range of decorative interior choices. Many of us are familiar with the distinctive styles of Egypt and Morocco, for example; indeed, many of their iconic designs have found their way into mainstream Western art in some way or other. It is not unusual to see a basalt Egyptian cat serving as an ornament or Moroccan tiles decorating a bathroom. But the other African countries have much to offer as well.

For small accent touches, you can use woven baskets as decorative items, boldly patterned cushion covers and other native fabrics for soft furnishings, or carved wooden figurines that represent tribal gods that can be used as ornaments or wall art. These minimal design elements are perfect for those who are still unsure about doing a complete overhaul. For large-scale redecoration, larger design motifs can be laid upon the very walls of your interiors by choosing shades of paint that echo the natural landscape, such as tans and light browns to represent the sands of the African desert areas.

European style

The Western world naturally incorporates the continent of Europe, but perhaps the New World still has something to learn from the Old. Much of American interior design ideas come from our Quaker heritage and borrowings from England, but continental Europe has a wide range of styles that can be applied to American homes.

Take France as an example. Their interior design history is rich with ornate metalwork gilded in antique gold that lends any room a feeling of opulence, mixed with furniture that has ornate woodwork detailing. Much of French style features a distressed look, so that even if the pieces are brand new, they give the impression of having been passed down from generation to generation.

The Scandinavian countries have an almost opposite idea of style, paring down the essentials of a room to a bare minimum and showing off the beauty of natural wood furniture, teamed with plain and simple soft furnishings. This is a style for those who love minimalism and appreciate the clean look Scandinavian style offers.

Use your travels to influence your interior design style to create a home that not only represents you and your personality, but that also acts as a reminder of the places you so enjoyed visiting.


Featured Courtesy by Memi Ketie Kokovich under cc license

 

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Janice