Artistry Abroad

April 5

Design Inspiration from my trip to Germany

When it comes to interesting details and creative features, the design elements I encountered on my recent trip to Germany have provided more than a little inspiration. As I have in the last couple of months, I want to again outline some of the incredible ways that the German attitudes and approaches to design can inspire innovative and artistic elements in our own homes.

Unexpected use of color, texture, or application.

As you’ve likely guessed by the last few blogs raving about some pretty interesting design features I saw on my trip, Germany does not disappoint when it comes to architecture and design related elements that inspire creativity. This month, I want to talk about how the Germans use unexpected color, texture, or application to increase the drama factor and create a stunning design.

It seems that the world has an affinity for subway tile and, with its versatility of product in a variety of shapes, sizes, colors, and textures, it’s easy to see why it’s such a popular choice. When my clients choose a standard subway tile, I encourage them to explore the diverse range of options that they might not typically think of. Germans seem to think this way, too.

There were so many different ways that subway tiles were used and such a wide range of colors, textures, and applications that it created some intensely gorgeous designs. For instance, rarely were there sterile subway tiles; most contained some unique design element from beveling and color to direction and finish. Even when they did opt for the traditional white subway tile, the grout wasn’t a dark and contrasting vein running throughout, it was coordinated to the tile. When they used different textures and colors, it gave depth to an otherwise sterile aesthetic.

In order to create a seamless and stunning look, Germans also typically use a lighter, sandy-colored flooring often comprised of vinyl plank, wood, or laminate. The look is flawless and delightfully full of charm.

The juxtaposition of color on the walls.

When they weren’t using subway tile to make a statement, the German people love to create a juxtaposition of color on the walls. In this instance, walls were painted a lighter color such as white, light gray, or greige, as a base. About two feet down from the ceiling and running the perimeter of the room at various angles and widths would be these amazing strips of vibrant color.

If, perhaps, the room lacked architectural detail, there would be an incredibly dramatic and perfectly executed pop of color to draw in the eye. As it was typically only a thin strip of color, it didn’t overwhelm the space but instead enhanced it in a way that was pleasing and unexpectedly gorgeous. Because we don’t often tend to be that bold with paint here, I am inspired to have my clients draw from a complimentary color or fabric hue for application and work with it to make it a fresh, stylish, timeless idea.

These two design elements from Germany definitely had me thinking about how we could apply or learn from the applications they use to create flawless and fresh designs for my clients. It certainly reinforced some things in my design business and inspired other areas. This trip continues delivering on amazing things!


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