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The word Fusion is a wonderful word isn’t it? It’s become quite fashionable and trendy and is even perhaps slightly overused, but it is a true reflection of and perfectly encapsulates the international society in which we now live, no matter where we are in the world.
One great example which we have all come across is fusion cuisine – the art of mixing different ingredients, herbs, spices and flavours from various parts of the world to create new dishes or to update old favourites.
And of course the same can be said about interiors. Fusion in interiors is about mixing two or more design aesthetics to create a unique and individual look. This can be achieved with any two or more styles like for example the ‘East-meets-West’ approach of combining modern Western designs with a calm Japanese colour palette and design features.
One of the most exciting and current blend of styles is that of mixing contemporary European furniture designs and colour palettes with a Middle-Eastern and Asian aesthetic, particularly the designs and crafts from places like Lebanon, Morocco, India and Egypt.
So what does this mean and how do we achieve this look successfully? Well, it will depend of course on how much of each culture you want to highlight, but whether you are looking to embrace the fusion look completely or just want the odd touch here and there, there are three elements you can consider that are easy to incorporate.
In countries like India and Morocco, colour is abundant in their rich textile, weaving and ceramics heritage. Adding colour to your space is relatively easy and will go a long way to achieving that Asian fusion look. Paint just one wall or a whole room, paint ceilings, doors, architraves, window frames or even floors if you’re feeling particularly adventurous!
Choose colours like copper, deep mustard, midnight blue or dark berry which are reminiscent of these regions and combine them with neutrals like taupe, grey and white for balance and contrast and of course to keep things contemporary.
If painting is not an option, then colour can be introduced with a piece of furniture, artwork, fabrics, cushions, curtains, blinds, rugs, accessories and even just with flowers. Be bold and layer in neutral shades for balance.
The rich architectural and design heritage of the Middle East and Asia includes pattern in almost every discipline. Gorgeous wooden lattice screens and windows, layered paisley and geometric patterns on textiles, intricate designs in mother of pearl inlaid in wood and beautifully carved stonework are just a few examples.
Introducing these types of patterns into your design scheme will give it the character and personality that is so reminiscent of this part of the world. And of course you can combine texture with colour as well!
Cushions, throws and rugs with the right sort of pattern are great, especially if you want the flexibility of easily making changes. Pendant or table lamps with cut-out Filigrain patterns will throw amazing magical patterns onto your ceiling and walls – even if the rest of the room is plain and simple, this would be enough of a statement to give the space a bit of that fusion character.
Smooth silks, heavy linens, cotton velvets, woven Kilims, wool and mohair are but a few of the textures that would be used in these regions. Add to that the rich heritage of pleating, weaving, quilting and smocking and there is no shortage to choose from.
Try adding a Kilim rug to your space (which is highly likely to include colour and pattern as well!) or some beautifully made cushions with geometric or Suzani designs.
Below are a few examples of striking interior schemes that have achieved the fusion look successfully and which you will hopefully find inspiring!
Free Style Fusion Guide
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