A Dash of Moroccan Design

It makes sense that I would wind up immediately inspired by the long-awaited book Marrakesh by Design by blogger Maryam of My Marrakesh! Her blog’s global style and riot of patterns had already inspired me to get a bunch of stencils from Royal Design Studio for the walls of our India apartment. (Alas the walls weren’t ready to paint during our last trip so I don’t yet have anything to show. Very impatiently awaiting our next trip!)

While reading the book, I’m seeing many design similarities between Morocco and India. The love of pattern, color and handiwork. The embracing of embroidery and bold textile embellishments. Sequins and mirrors. Even the superstitions, and using objects to ward off evil things. Heavy carved wood doors. Latticework on windows. The open Moroccan courtyards remind me of the open centers of vastu shastra rooms. And of course Persian and Islamic design influence can be found throughout India, although not as much in the South as in the North.

The book already made me add a dash of Moroccan style to our dining room:

I didn’t have to go far to get it. Just a flight of stairs to the basement. Finding these Moroccan lanterns buried down there took more time than the journey there:

We found these lanterns in Uptown Minneapolis. I suspect they’re from China, but Moroccan in style. This book made me remember them, packed away since we moved to Chicago eight years ago. They now join the mirror in the dining room, which was needing some sconces to make it feel less lonely and less … square:

I put battery-operated flickering tealights in them so there’s no worry about flames or mess. I once thought fake candle flames were a crime of the worst kind, but now with cats in the house, they’re safe and practical:

To hang the Moroccan lanterns, I found little hooks at Hobby Lobby. But they were brass color and I wanted them to coordinate with the lanterns’ copper color, so I colored the hooks with a Krylon copper leafing pen and then dabbed some color off with gauze to make the hooks look not-so-shiny. Then I hung them with shiny silver screws and dabbed copper color on those too. The copper leafing pen is wonderful — it dries fast and durable enough to withstand slips of the screwdriver while I was installing these:

I like mixing things up, so in this little corner of our home there are things from Cambodia, India, Italy, Thailand and that all-American of stores, Target:

Below the mirror, a gong we found at the shop at HanumanAlaya, a small hotel in Siem Reap, Cambodia, with Diwali diyas from India:

Another Lakshmi to add to the ones posted previously, and behind her a celadon vase from Thailand:

I found this Lakshmi in Chennai, India. She is my favorite goddess:

OK, I don’t know how this post got from Moroccan inspiration back to India. But, well, that’s how my house is …

3 Replies to “A Dash of Moroccan Design”

  1. I never would have thought those hooks weren’t part of the sconce. Very cool. And awesome storage treasure find too.

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