The Melting Pot: Blending Culture into Design

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One of the reasons I love living in Los Angeles so much is that I get to see different corners of the world right in my own back yard. The different faces, fashion, food, accents, and cultures keep Los Angeles alive and interesting and the same can be said for many cities throughout the United States.

Of course my favorite way in which this melting pot manifests itself is in our interiors. It isn’t unusual to see homes decorated with the flair of another part of the globe, or maybe even 3 or 4 other parts of the globe, all thrown in together. Many people find the term “eclectic” to be overused in decorating, but I just think it’s an easy way to describe the mix of cultures and styles that we all love.

Here are a few of my favorite examples of American rooms with multi-cultural pizazz.

The Netherlands in New Jersey

Netherlands in New Jersey
Photo: Lonny Mag

Delft pottery started in the 16th century in Delft Netherlands, and as Americans we have grabbed hold of this decorative accessory with both hands, creating our own spin and interpretation of original designs. Although typically blue and white, this New Jersey dining room features a more black and white version.

Portugal in Santa Barbara

PortugalPhoto Left: House Beautiful; Photo Right: Flickr

Portuguese tiles are so rich with pattern and striking blue and white palate, it’s no wonder they have found their way into many American bathrooms and kitchens. The photo at the left shows a contemporary application of this timeless design element in a Santa Barbara master bathroom. To the right is another example of Portuguese tile that can give your next kitchen remodel the ethnic flair you’ve been looking for.

France in the Hamptons

France Inspired Interior in the Hampton'sPhoto: House Beautiful

No one does Parisian style quite like the Parisians…but we definitely get an A for effort. I love this application of Louis XIV mirrors. Instead of just one, there is a pair flanking the fireplace, adding to the organized chaos of interesting art and objects found throughout this Hamptons family room.

Japan in Los Angeles

Japanese inspired bedroom Los Angeles interior designPhoto: House Beautiful

Natural and organic are very much a part of our vocabulary these days, but in terms of interior decoration, the Japanese culture has had been encompassing these principles for quite a while. The natural finish of the wood paneling and the low bed with clean, simple lines found in this Los Angeles bedroom are a perfect example of how we frequently incorporate Japanese design elements into every day décor.

What’s your favorite part of the globe to add to the melting pot of your home?

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Brittany is an interior designer and stylist constantly searching for creativity and inspiration in the world around her. She currently resides in Los Angeles, California where she finds plenty of both. Her interior design studio services a variety of clients throughout California seeking her simple and collected aesthetic. Brittany believes that a house becomes a home when it is beautiful, comfortable and, most importantly, reflects the personality of the people who live inside.