Post by Stacey Walker. Stacey mostly works behind the scenes for Greenbrook Design, managing day to day operations, marketing, sourcing product and keeping the showroom beautifully designed. Stacey also does interior design & home styling for a select number of clients. Find out more about Stacey here.
At the heart of any design work is the chance to tell a story, the story of those who live there. Our home is at the core of who we are, it is our grounding, the place we can truly let our hair down and be ourselves. It is where memories are not just made but remembered and passed down to the next generation. Our homes were meant to be special and a symbol to all who enter, of what really matters to us so the design choices we make should be influenced by who we are and where we came from. From every corner of the globe peoples design choices tend to be influenced by culture which is why we have particular styles such as:
We are impacted by our family roots and since there is no greater symbol for family than home, we should embrace who we are and let it play a part in telling our personal story to the world. Here are several ways you can blend culture with interior design to create a unique style all your own.
Everybody has at least one relative in their family that never throws anything out or has saved those special pieces that have been passed down to them from parents and grandparents. While most family heirlooms contain very little monetary value, the sentimental value can never be truly measured. Some great examples of family heirlooms include:
Textiles like embroidered art work
There are so many delightful ways to weave them into your home decor. Have an old set of dishes from your grandmother? Display them in an elegant hutch, sometimes you can find ones in an antique store for a great price. Do you own a side table that has been passed down? Use it in your hall or entry way to hold keys and outgoing mail. There are also some unique ways to use non-traditional items such as old suitcases. Add some legs and you can create a little coffee table that makes a great conversation starter. Did your grandmother love to create stitching samples? Have them framed and hung on the wall. Maybe you have an old furniture piece that is beyond repair but some of the wood is still usable, consider having it turned into a different piece of furniture. The possibilities, like the love you share is endless and it is a beautiful way to keep your family close.
Family photos or collections
This can be a lot of fun and provide you with some amazing decor pieces that cannot be imitated anywhere else. There is an old saying that if walls could talk, well now they can, they can be used as the largest storybook ever. Have a collection of old photos? Find matching or maybe not matching frames and display them for all to see, laugh, and smile with you. Did you have someone who loved to collect stamps or maybe postcards? These can also be beautiful wall decor items or they can even be grouped together in larger frames or pinned on canvases to form elegant art. Because there is no one like you or your family, every photo or piece is exclusive to you. It is the perfect way to tell your story in a one-of-a-kind way and share it with others.
Purposeful color choices
Color is a powerful design tool because it can influence our moods as well as the entire atmosphere. It also possesses something else, a link to memory and representation of certain cultures. For instance, the African-American culture often highlights bold, beautiful colors like lime green and bright orange while a Scandinavian palette tends to be more into the neutrals like gray and white. Don’t be afraid to incorporate the beautiful shades and tints that are from your culture, it’s a part of who you are and people should see it when they come into your home. Just because that color hasn’t been used with the particular style you choose doesn’t mean it can’t. There are lots of fun ways to bring color into the design:
Accent pieces like pillows
Fabric for furniture
Decor pieces like a vase
Color tells a story and in your home it should be yours. Take the time to look through magazines, talk to family members and create a design plan that fully represents you and your loved ones.
Patterns and textures
Many cultures have particular patterns associated with them such as the French Fleur de lis and the Celtic knot. Both of these symbols are forever linked with their country and used in multiple design choices for flyers, graphics, and even textiles. This is a fun way to bring in your culture to the home. Pillows, bedding, and window treatments can be the perfect way to highlight families’ rich history into the home as well.
Culture and interior design
Who knew that these two seemingly different categories could be blended together in such a beautiful way and tell a story all its own? Your home is yours, it must reflect who you are as a person otherwise interior design has truly failed in its goal. Every designer strives to assist their clients create a space that is more than just a pretty place you can have friends over, more than just a functional dwelling that meets your specific needs, it must reveal what matters to you. Our culture is more than just where we came from, it has shaped us, nurtured us, and influenced our choices, should it not then be included when designing a home? A good design should have meaning and purpose behind every choice that was made about each detail. We always say that details matter and that is not just as a tool, they matter because they have meaning. We should be proud of our culture and thankfully more companies are realizing just how much that matters, letting it influence the creation of their products. Our showroom is full of unique items that represent multiple cultures and we also have access to more than 20 different vendors so there is no limit to what we can get for you. If you have been searching for a particular piece that can tell your story in a unique way we would love to help you. Our ultimate goal is to see our clients discover pieces that delight them and represent exactly what makes them special. Come pay us a visit in Uptown Shelby, the city of pleasant living and together we will tell your story as it was meant to be told.