Put the finishing touches in your home with accents that capture the feel of French Polynesian life. Oversized planters with large palm plants and broadleaf tropical plants are a good start. Tropical flowers are abundant on Polynesian islands and are commonly seen in the hair of Tahitian women; look for fabric patterns or framed art with motifs of hibiscus, orchids or white gardenia, which resemble Tahitian tiare flowers. Fresh or silk flower arrangements will brighten rooms. Drape gauzy white material over a four-poster bed or hang it from ceiling hooks to resemble the mosquito netting used in tropical locales. Include several framed photos of Polynesian beaches and landscapes or even a wall-sized mural to bring a piece of paradise into your home.
Asian Style Basics, Different elements of Asian style have influenced Western décor for centuries. Today we are so used to these Asian influences that we do not even realize where they came from. The ball and claw foot, for instance, was originally inspired by a Chinese motif. Asian inspired furniture draws on Japanese, Chinese, Korean and Vietnamese traditions among others. The Asian style, which encompasses the Far East, is not confined to any one country or culture and spans centuries. Far from having a single homogenous look, Asian furniture can be highly ornamented, with carved surfaces and bold color, or have very simple lines, free of any ornamentation with soothing neutral tones. When creating your own Asian-inspired interior, you can pick and choose from different elements. Maybe what stands out as the single most defining feature is a sense of balance and a lack of clutter creating balanced, uncluttered, and harmonious interiors. The red and black Chinese inspired chest is from Hooker.
Convey the feel of a French Polynesian bungalow with furniture made from teak, bamboo or banana leaf. Furniture made from rattan, wicker or water hyacinth also imparts a tropical feel. Include layers of organic texture with items made from woven seagrass such as area rugs, baskets, chairs and headboards. Provide an extra layer of privacy when needed with matchstick blinds on windows. Plantation-style shutters work well with wood paneling. Grasscloth wallpaper is another option for adding texture and color to walls. Bring in a touch of Tahitian culture with colorful, hand printed pareus. Pareus are brightly colored sheets of fabric that can be wrapped around one's body and worn as a simple dress or draped across a bed, the back of a sofa or the arm of a chair for a splash of color and pattern. Hang a collection of authentic wood Polynesian tiki masks or display carved tiki sculptures on a table or shelf. Hang a framed Polynesian tapa on the wall. Tapas are paintings on fabric, traditionally used as celebration dance dresses depicting tattooed heiva dancers, Marquesan women, aquatic animals and traditional Marquesan tattoo motifs. In lieu of traveling to French Polynesia to acquire these tribal treasures, look for them online.
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