Wednesday, March 9, 2016


As a design professional, it's my job to keep abreast of emerging design trends and home decor styles. One style that may have started as a trend but has evolved into more of a design philosophy is global living or the infusion of global design at home.

From Indian inspired living rooms to African inspired bedrooms, more and more people are looking across the globe to find inspiration for their homes and the way they live. People want spaces that celebrate diversity and reflect who they are.

But how does one create a space that features global and exotic elements while maintaining one's modern lifestyle? 

Would you like to inject some global flair into your space, but just not sure where or how to start? Well I've got just the right tips to get you on your way.  Creating a global inspired space that feels genuine but stays true to your lifestyle is not as hard as you may think.

Here are my 6 steps to getting the "well-traveled" look at home.


Start with a A Neutral Base

Although I used a rich color (Sherwin Williams' Dark Knight) on the walls of my room vignette, I balanced out the saturated wall color and bright accessories by using a neutral colored sofa.

The key to using bold color is to keep the large scale design elements and furnishings (ie. sofa, dining table, sideboard) neutral. 

The bright white slipcovered sofa, with its simple and clean lines, was just the right blank canvas to sprinkle a medley of patterned pillows upon.


Decorate in Layers

Decorating in layers creates an interesting and organic feel.  It tells a story.  You can add layers in a space by laying a patterned rug on top of a natural fiber rug or placing a throw blanket or piece of fabric across the arm of a sofa and then nestling a printed pillow against the sofa arm. Yes, it's that easy!

Each layer is like a chapter in a book that once completed tells a beautiful story.


Infuse Bold Color

One of the quickest and easiest ways to add color in a space is by adding an area rug.  Bold, beautiful overdyed rugs come in a variety of colors and look great layered over natural fiber rugs like sisal rugs as I've done here.

Traditionally, overdyed rugs were created dying over the design of a vintage rug with a rich and saturated hue.  Overdyed rugs are a modern take on classic Persian antique rugs. I found this beautiful overdyed rug at Rugs USA and absolutely love it's rich color. It's vibrant hue instantly warms up the space and adds an exciting energy to the vignette.

These rugs are easy to clean and because of its already distressed/ antiqued look it's a great choice for high traffic areas of the home.

Rugs USA has a beautiful selection of international inspired rugs to chose from. A few of my personal favorites can be seen here, here and here. Any of these would look great in a global inspired space.


Focus Less on Collecting Objects and More on the Feeling you Want to Evoke in the Space

Decorating a space is not just about gathering and displaying "things."  A well curated and collected space features decor and objects that have meaning.  Furnishings chosen should evoke conversation and remind you of a special time or place.


Mix Rustic and Refined Design 

Natural wood tones and woven elements add warmth and charm to interior spaces. My favorite way to use woven pieces like baskets and bowls is to prominently display a collection of them on the wall. The display creates interest and often inspires conversation.


Introduce exotic pattern 

Pattern can be introduced in a space via area rugs, upholstered furnishing, or even throw pillows.  To create an authentic interior with international flair, do a little research.

Find out what types of textiles and patterns are used in the regions you'd like to reflect in your homes design.  

To incorporate elements of African design in the space,  I chose this stunning purple ankara print pillow from Reflektion Design.  Made by a wax-resist dyeing technique called Batik, Ankara fabric is characterized by bold vibrant pattern on 100% cotton.   

I learned that although Ankara fabric is typically associated with African culture, it’s origins are actually Dutch. Dutch wax prints started out as inexpensive reproductions of Indonesian batik fabric. "Ankara was originally intended for the Indonesian market but found a more enthusiastic market in West Africa, where it became a symbol of traditional and high quality fashion." - via

Need more help incorporating global decor in your home? Contact me today to book a consultation. Let's get started on creating a home you love!

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