Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Anatomy of a Room - How to do Moroccan right

I love the idea of layering in a room and nothing is more layered than a Moroccan styled room. Some designs over do the causal style and the motifs but some use those elements in a sophisticated brilliant way, almost a purposeful chaos. 

One of the best designs is by Gordon Stein in a house called Casbah Cove in Palm Desert California. The architecture is loaded with Moroccan styled motifs and shapes but the style is still casual and open. 

Love this ceiling

There are many details in this room - caning on the cornerstones, slated ceiling, multi color tiled walls, marble floors, carved doors but notice how it is the white color of the walls that holds the room together. 

This gorgeous bedroom with the repeated shapes in arches and wall treatments, chevron floor, teardrop rug, and round light fixture. Brilliantly balanced with high contrast of black trim on the windows. 

Love the skylights and the eternity arches in the mirror. 

The skylight shape is repeated on the doors but done in white on white. With 3 different arch motifs in one room - pointed arch, rounded and stretched out, one would think that it was over kill but the subtle nature of the design helps pull the layers together. 

Rules are definitely made to be broken if done with the architecture and the proportions of the room in mind. 

Typical of Moroccan design is the multi tile mix - color and pattern but here the brown wall anchors the colors on the floor so they shine strong but grounded. 

A little more traditional in design but the shaped on the fireplace is beautiful. 

Again patterns, colors and architecture combined in the grotto. 

A beautiful courtyard with perfect proportions in the height of the house and the trees against the arches. 

A detail of the powder room. I can't tell exactly what the sink basin looks like but maybe just perforated holes in a marble top? 

(All of the above photos came from Numvo)

Obviously that house had a huge budget but here are some ideas for layering that could be done in your own home. 

1. Mixing styles - traditional artwork within a casual room setting

2. Neutral pillows in heavy cotton fabrics and of course down fills

( photo from French by Design )

3. Architectural arch designs

4. Everyone loves a good day bed

( Photo from Interiors by Krisnalila) 

5. Grouping lighting elements

6. Multi patterns of pillows or tiles anchored with white

( photo from Justdecorate)

I missed my chance to travel to Morocco in January of 2016 but I hope to get there one day to see these design elements in their natural setting. 

Until then we can dream and create! 

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