Incorporating Asian-Inspired Style Into Modern Décor

Asian-inspired décor is seeping into contemporary spaces everywhere. There’s something about its serenity, its soothing forms, and its balance that resonates beautifully with the streamlined feel of a modern home.

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Here are 16 decorating tips on infusing your modern space with a bit of Asian décor, finding that balance between simple yet sophisticated, minimal yet warm, and peaceful yet energetic.

1. Create a Zen Space.

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Zen involves the almost ethereal effect of perfect harmony and balance. This can be achieved in your home décor by incorporating natural materials, a calming, neutral color palette, and clean-lined and simple furnishings. As with all home decorating styles, balance is key in incorporating Asian décor.{image source houseandhome}.

2. Maximize the Flow of Energy.

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Light, open floor plans are hinged upon the Asian style of Zen design, in which positive energy is encouraged to flow throughout a space. The subsequent harmony created by objects and their negative white space is enhanced through the use of other natural design elements – in this instance, wood blinds, bamboo details, and Asian wall art.

3. Recognize the Importance of the Circle.

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Circle motifs are important in Asian décor, representing the sun (Japan is known as “the land of the rising sun” and has even incorporated this important symbol in its national flag). They look stunning as doorways (known as “moon doors”) or in cabinet faces.

4. Add Chinoiserie Details.

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Chinoserie, a French term that means “Chinese-esque,” represents fanciful Chinese influences via imaginary and intricate designs. Chinoserie may involve a whimsical or flamboyant vibe and is most often found in embroideries or textiles, on furniture pieces (e.g., cabinet doors), or on porcelain objects.{image found on elle}.

5. Incorporate Screens.

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Whether it’s a simple folding screen in the corner of a space or an actual sliding screen door in between rooms, screen doors provide a fantastic Asian flair to a space. They provide a sense of privacy without the starker boundaries of a true wall.{image from greigedesign}.

6. Use Bamboo.

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One of the easiest, and most versatile, ways to incorporate an Asian feel into a contemporary space is to use bamboo. There are many available options for doing so – flooring, window treatments, cabinetry, furniture, even mirror and photo frames.

7. Use Powerful Colors…Purposefully.

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Red is a passionate, full-bodied color in the Chinese culture. The color of the sun, red (and similar colors) are symbolic of life, energy, and vitality. It is not without careful thought and consideration that red and other strong colors are incorporated into a space – but when they are, it’s done with confidence and power.

8. Incorporate an Iconic Buddha.

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Actually “Siddhartha Gautama” but better known as Budda, this iconic example is a traditional Asian décor element that represents balanced proportions. It involves a religious, historical, and cultural essence, adding depth and harmony to your space.

9. Look to Antiques.

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A weathered, painted chinoiserie console table is a perfect foundation and backdrop for beautiful jade-colored urns. Paired with white walls and simple surrounding furnishings, this Asian-inspired vignette is both soothing and inspiring.

10. Emphasize an Object’s Patina.

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Just as traditional Asian décor carries with it a sense of history and purpose, an object’s patina often tells its story in one glance. Embrace this patina, including its perfect imperfections, and celebrate its history.

11. Silkscreen(esque) Walls.

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Silkscreen prints on the wall can imbue a space with a sense of serenity and scale, and Asian prints in particular tend to offer up a telling story with beautiful details and rich hues. Silkscreen-inspired wallpapers are readily available now, particularly with the renewed modern trend of hanging wallpaper as wall coverings.

12. Combine Asian Prints with Solid Neutrals.

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Mixing and matching Asian-inspired prints on textiles and furnishings infuses a space with richness and flavor. So as to keep things balanced (one of the key elements of Asian design), incorporate other solids and neutrals into the space as well.

13. Mix Asian Elements with Modern.

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Asian décor doesn’t necessarily have to mean loading the space up with chinoiserie and Japanese relics. To combine the beauty of Asian details with a modern-edged space is a beautiful thing – look to bamboo, orchids, or garden stools, for example, for inspiring yet non-overpowering starters.

14. Embrace Tranquility.

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Subtle Asian design elements can improve the tranquility of your space and enhance its design aesthetic overall. Soft lighting (here, paper lanterns), natural textiles (bamboo bed), neutral tones, and the careful editing of Asian-inspired objects can all work together to create a tranquil space.

15. Study – and be Guided by – Feng Shui.

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Balance the positive and negative energies of your space and your design scheme with feng shui for optimal vitality and peace. Balance hard and soft, square and round, even north and south. This has been an Asian practice for centuries, both in life and décor.

16. Incorporate Space for Meditation.

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Traditional Japanese design resonates with modern design because both embrace minimalism and simplicity, both in form and function. Incorporating a tatami room achieves this sense of purposeful serenity, with its mats, low table, and sliding shoji screens for privacy.