You can use dècor to transport yourself to another place, whether provincial France or the mysterious Far East
Evoking a sense of ‘another place’ can be achieved by pursuing a period look synonymous with another nation (such as French Louis XVI, American Shaker, British Georgian, American Colonial), or something a little more generic such as English country, Mediterranean, Moroccan, American beachside, French provincial, Oriental, Scandinavian or African.
But even these more generic labels require greater definition because, just as any nation is not one huge homogenous landmass, so too its interior decorating style cannot be neatly placed in a box labelled French, British etc. For example, English country style can encompass the look of the Home Counties (all Laura Ashley florals and chintz), the more straightforward rural look of inland peasant cottages or the refined style of the aristocrat’s manor house.
American country style is even more complicated, taking in the rough and rugged look of the south-west (with its desert-inspired colours and Navajo Indian motifs), the homespun simplicity of the farming mid-west (typified by checked cotton and rocking chairs, hand-pieced quilts and floor rugs), the folksy feel of the north-west (with its wonderful needlework samplers and stencils, decals, naive artworks and Shaker boxes), the grandeur of the antebellum mansions of the deep south, the mountain cabin style of the Rockies, and so on.
Evoking the look of far-flung lands or your favourite overseas holiday destination is very easy to do in modernday Australia. We are a multi-cultural nation and this diverse mix of peoples has brought with them the fabrics,furnishings and decorative elements favoured in their countries of birth.We are also spoilt for choice, thanks to the ever-growing number of import businesses and stores pecialising in exotic homewares. Whether authentic or reproduction, it has never been easier to access artworks and furnishing from Bali, China, Africa, France … anywhere you can imagine.
There’s also a wealth of resource material available on how the rest of the world lives. There are countless books on the subject and magazines which detail not only how other people live, but also how they put their homes together — from the colours they prefer to the fabrics they use, the way they arrange their furniture, and the accessories they include to achieve a particular look. As the world becomes a smaller place, Australians have ready access to everything they need to create their own little slice of Greece, Provence, Tuscany or Tunisia.