Material and Texture. Texture plays an integral part in Asian style furniture. Surfaces can be smooth and shiny, because wood is either polished to perfection, painted, or lacquered. Surface interest is also created by using materials such as bamboo, paper, silver or gold leaf. Upholstery and rugs run the gamut from silk to jute and straw. This round cocktail table is from Hammary, and it combines some very interesting materials and textures that you find in Asian furniture. The deep dish top has a glass inset highlighted by a field of silver leaf. This is a take on an ancient art technique in which the underside of the glass is painted with an intricate pattern. The faux bamboo base has a soft black finish with a subtle red rub through.
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.
Known to be the cradle of civilization, the Middle East is a region steeped in ancient culture and religion – much of which has survived to the present day. It's also an area in which multiple influences meet to create colorful and flavorful styles of art, architecture and interior décor. From the markets of Morrocco and the beaches of Israel to the deserts of Iran, there is plenty of beautiful sights and styles for home design inspiration. Here are some easy ways to implement a Middle Eastern touch. One of the most easily recognizable Middle Eastern (and particularly Islamic) artistic traits is geometric patterns. From the shape of the buildings to the prints in fabrics and artwork, geometric patterns are everywhere. You can add these patterns to your home in the form or area rugs, throw pillows or a piece of framed wall art.
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