Interior Design The Arab Way by Ruqoyah O. Ositade

Writing this piece on Arab Interior Design reminds me of Aladdin, his lamp and carpet. These, along with other  Arab inspired  decorative pieces when introduced into a design scheme are distinct and near magically enough to transport you to a whole new world. I particularly like tribal and ethnic design themes, citing the strong influence of Islam on Arab arts and design highlights a truly rich, elaborate and original design inspiration. The Arab culture being vibrant, colorful, exotic, and distinct lends itself to a dizzying array of patterns, hues, textures and even smell – all of these when incorporated into any design scheme, presents%20you with a breathtaking and truly gorgeous space. This coming together of culture and religion inspires one of the most aesthetically pleasing design inspirations in both ancient and modern times. Often times, Moroccan designs are used  to represent what many  refer to as Arab designs- whilst the Islamic influence on both are apparent,  Moroccan themes  have great influences from the French and Spanish. In this feature, I will be taking you through the many ways of turning your space into your Arabian castle. Whilst images of humans and animals are prohibited by the Islamic faith, the art of calligraphy including Qu’ranic verses are used in different ways to enhance both the interior and exterior of buildings. Features to introduce and items to look out for when planning  and picking your design pieces include mosaics, calligraphy, stained glass, motifs, leather works, domes, geometric patterns, arches, columns, rich, warm tones, lamps and lanterns, intricate wood work,  rugs, ceramics. Colour The colours to incorporate in an Arabian design theme are mostly rich, deep earth tones. These immediately introduce a warm ambience and could range from aubergine, midnight blue, and crimson to cinnamon with a hint of gold and silver.  If you feel these colours may be too deep for your walls, try leaving them neutral and introduce colours to the accessories instead. Furniture Furniture could range from intricately carved wood or brass metal work to simple low floor sitting arrangements with loads of colourful floor pillows and poufs. Screens and room dividers are also typical elements in traditional Arabian homes. Lighting If you are looking to introduce just bits and pieces of Arabian design elements with your existing contemporary theme this is where the magic starts for you.  Lanterns and lamps made of brass, copper or silver look absolutely stunning.  These could be pendant lights suspended from the ceiling or table top or floor lamps, whatever your choice, they range from simple ones to rich jeweled intricate colored glass. The shapes crafted onto each piece are intricate and detailed that when lit in a dark room will reflect an array of patterns on the walls, ceilings and floors. Accessories This is what ties your entire design project together -you can never have enough of the right accessories.  From bright ceramics, mirrors, colourful drapes, calligraphy art, richly designed Persian rugs, and more cushions, your Arabian dream is finally come true.

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