Decorating With an International Flair

This room takes advantage of a number of international elements while still providing a comfortable contemporary space. If you’re fortunate enough to have travelled and collected art and other items from a number of countries, take the opportunity to use them to add personality and your own touch to your home.

The wood floor and cream walls provide a good base for the variety of colors and textures featured in this room. Simple architectural elements such as the black molding and the wood surround on the door provide additional charm without distracting from the rich selection of international elements. The straightforward sofa, coffee table and ottoman also work well as a backdrop to the more design-rich pieces.

Let’s start with the light fixture. Most people wouldn’t think of buying a light as a souvenir from another country, but this unique look helps to set the stage for the room’s design.

Give up the idea of having elements match each other. When you purchase international goods, everything will be different, so celebrate that. Take a look at the two candlesticks on the coffee table. On the left an old carved wood carries a red taper that sets off the rich patina of weathered wood. On the right an intricate brass candlestick carries a warm cream candle. Similarities come from the rounded shapes and heights, but the differences work.

The throw pillows are in basic domestic fabrics, but they provide an opportunity to bring in textiles from other countries in the future. A rich area rug could be purchased here in the U.S. or possibly selected from a Turkish bazaar. When you begin with a good basic look of wood floor and earth-tone furniture, you can add those exciting international elements and make your home intriguingly yours.

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