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Sunday, June 6, 2010

Asian Influence...

Design trends tend to come and go, but the ones with true staying power are derived from history. By adding pieces to your decor that have historical significance you will be adding depth, character and a true sense of relevance. There is a way to blend historical and classic design elements into your own personal style. As for me, I have always been drawn to an Asian inspired design aesthetic. The following are examples of how these elements have been integrated into my home, shop and personal style...

Asian design has been based on tranquility, peace and harmony for centuries. I find that simple yet beautiful organization creates a sense of peace in my home. By organizing clutter, even simple bars of soap and votive candles take on an elegance and charm.

Another key to Asian design is the use of bold dramatic color like gold, red and black. My personal style is, for the most part, void of color. However, this drama can be created by the bold use of black as a stark contrast to white.

The design influence can be extremely subtle yet still make a huge impact on the space.

Natural materials are heavily utilized in Asian design. The pieces below were made from balsa wood and twine. When manipulated in a very delicate manner, they create beautiful but simple works of art. It reminds me of the intricate and delicate paper art of origami.

Another key practice in Asian design is the use of multi-purpose furnishings. Space was very limited in many Asian homes so furnishings had to be practical and functional. Beautiful trunks and cabinets with individual drawers and compartments were at a premium for storage.

Texture is also a key element of design. Natural wood intricately carved created a pictorial of historical significance. Not only were the pieces beautiful, they were recording history through visual story telling. An incredible level of craftsmanship that has endured for centuries.

Even a simple doll can be transformed into a piece of art in a very sophisticated fashion.

Utilitarian objects like rice paper parasols can also be transformed into elements of design. They are simple and elegant while they play into another element of Asian decor...light. The filtering of natural light was a playful art that could be seen in lanterns, screens, fans and of course...parasols

To me, there are no rules when it comes to design. Mixing items you love is the perfect recipe for a beautiful, eclectic home. Be creative, playful and most of your surroundings.


  1. really beautiful, as usual. The wall sconces are very interesting.

  2. Beautiful post!I have for many years infused an Asian touch to my decor...but with mine I add a pop of beautiful teal and bright yellow and loads of white with the gold, red, and black...thanks for the inspiration!

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