A Room with a Worldview, Adding International Elements to Design

Whether you are a visitor or admirer of other cultures, adding international elements to your decor can celebrate the best of what the world of interior design has to offer.


One of the ways you can add international elements to your interior design is to find an aesthetic you like and choose a space in the home to showcase it. You could choose to have a French style dining area, complete with European kitchen cabinets, or a Japanese inspired study with bamboo screens. Choosing one room to highlight can be a great way to test the waters and add a unique personality to a space.

If you want to go all-in and create a global look throughout the home, then pieces found at global furniture stores, or collected at fair-trade and handmade exhibits are great finds. Pottery is a medium found throughout many cultures and can add a warmth and handmade feel to the decor.


If you don’t want to spend the cash that imported furniture can cost, then textiles are the way to go. You can add a lot of color and flavor to a space by updating the fabrics and leaving the hardware and furniture as-is. It is best to choose an element to shine, if the walls are going to be bold leave the furniture and decor simple, and likewise if the walls are left neutral than the decor and furniture can really pop.

Throw pillows with intricate designs, rich silks for curtains and blankets, and woven rugs are all examples of ways you can add new textures and touches to the home to delight the senses. You could reupholster existing pieces with exotic fabrics for an instant makeover at a fraction of the cost of buying new. String art or framed embroidery are a fun way to get fibre arts on the wall and catch the eye as visitors walk by.


If you don’t have one country you would like to focus on you can go with broader concepts like seascapes, ocean life, or coastal cities. Using sea shells, marine blues, and aquatic themes you can design a room to recreate a Mediterranean feel. Likewise if you like more woodsy and mountainous landscapes then earth tones, leather, wood, and stone are excellent elements to incorporate.

Going global doesn’t have to mean going rustic, you can enjoy the sleek and modern design of European kitchen cabinets, or the clean straight lines of Japanese minimalism. Whatever your taste for design is, you can celebrate the best elements of both what makes your home unique to you, and the global influences that enrich it.