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Tuesday, March 5, 2013

INSPIRED INDIAN HOME DECOR VS HIPPY CLICHE

Ok I'm guilty of it myself. Travelling to a hot exotic climate, stuffing my suitcase full of trinkets bought in a blur of colour and excitement, and then displaying my purchases proudly at home, sort of like the decor equivalent of lugging home a mounted animal head as bounty from a shoot.

Nothing wrong with collecting mementos, but when it comes to Indian design, it's so easy to stick to the shorthand of paisley pattern/mirror work/sari fabric/elephant motif. So far, so blah. I know this makes me sound like a right old judgemental bat, but whenever I read the words "Indian-inspired" in relation to home decor, I can pretty much tell you every element of the room. Yes there's a reason that the same old embroidered cushion covers or random batik scarves are bought so often - it feels like a quick way to get an Indian look. It's also boring as hell and, well, it's just so unstylish to mimic a look rocked by a thousand hippies before you. 

If you're in love with the Goa hippy chic look, though, then ignore me and go to it! As for me, I'd rather mix it up a little, both to make it more contemporary, but also to ensure that there's personality shining through in how it's styled.

The key to this distinctly non-blah look is to take the elements of Indian design and throw in something totally different. The framed Indian images in these images below from Elle Decor look super modern when set against a tomato red (Indian houses tend to have white walls so painting walls in bold colours immediately updates the look). Meanwhile, the room next to it has a definite Indian flavour but it's brought out more in rich Indian colours than in actual product design (though that dude on the cushion is definitely Indian - just check out the 'tache!).

Photo credit: Elle Decor






















Polka dots work brilliantly here to off-set the more traditional coffee table and footstools.

Photo credit: Elle Decor


Photo credit: Elle Decor

If you don't love shocking blasts of colour, don't worry, Indian design really doesn't have to be as rainbow-hued as you might think from this blog. In this Calcutta apartment featured in Elle Decor, below, the unfinished plaster walls and ceramic plate display (both of which have a European rather than Indian flavour) merge beautifully with the more Indian vibe of the rest of the room.



Next up is a Bangalore apartment featured on lifestyle blog (one of my all-time favourites), Apartment Therapy. The place really makes my heart skip a happy little beat - it's stunning, Indian, and yet very contemporary at the same time. J'adore.








11 comments:

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