Makeover: Spice up your living room with African-themed décor

African décor is becoming very popular globally. It is a visual expression of cultural representations that represent African civilization and the beauty of the African continent. African décor is primarily influenced by nature, vibrant fabrics, wild animals, birds, and different traditional wood sculptures. The colour-schemes  of African décor are influenced by the range  of shades that include the earthiness of our soil, the different shades of green of our vegetation, the  brightness of the sun that stands over our heads all year round and the blue of the sky that reflects the beauty of our rivers, lakes and the oceans.


Whether you have a taste for modern or minimalist design, you could appreciate the appealing touch of African style. African-themed décor can easily be incorporated in contemporary design. Are you one of those whose living room is filled décor for the far  East or Europe?  Or are you living in America, Europe or Asia, and want to make a statement about your personal style and taste.

Perhaps it is time for makeover. Check out this selection that could spice up your living room.

Swahili daybed couch

Zanzibar has been diversely influenced by the British, Arabs, Portuguese, Indians, Persians and Africans, all of whom have passed through the island and left their mark.  However, lots of Swahili daybeds have Indian influence and you are bound to find them in many boutique hotels on the spice island of Zanzibar. You can drape the cushions with the fabric of your choice. Daybeds can be located on a porch or in a living room under a window that enjoys the morning sun. You can place a coffee  table  in front of it. No matter what your style—relaxed, modern or classic—the same rules apply. Let accessories add personality to your space.

Colourful Kitengelious couches with woven mat as a wall hanger

Similar to the IKEA Baltsar chair, these beautiful fraternal twin chairs, with an earthy dyed hand woven mat bowing over them, can make an interesting impression in a lounge area of your house, boutique hotel or even  your office. Office spaces should not always have those monochrome corporate sofas. You can add personality to a space with a splash of African décor.


African woven baskets on a white wall

African style is enriched with the tribe art of this amazing continent, including masks such as Makonde masks from Tanzania. However, Africa’s women also have a weaving tradition that produces beautiful products like baskets and mats.

African baskets are now more than just storage units, they make beautiful    decoration that also add character to a plain white wall. Countries that are well known for their beautiful basketry are Rwanda, Botswana and Tanzania. Nubian brightly coloured baskets from East Africa are  made from  palm leaves and natural dyes  can add a happy look to a plan wall.


  L-shaped lounge seat

If you have a lounge area in your house, this can be accentuated with gigantic ceramic pots in earthy colours to match the wooden window frames. You can replace your Persian carpet with a hand woven mat. Don’t forget to add some paintings to your walls. Every city has its visual artists that can capture the feel of your neighbourhood. However, if you live aboard or are part of a Diaspora community, and would like to have mementos of African visual art, wall paintings are a good way of adding African texture to your lounge. Lounges in Boutique hotels can make an impression to new guests. Create a lovely ambience by throwing multi-coloured cushions from Kitenge or any other African fabric on an L-shaped sofa, to make your guests want to hang around your lounge with drinks.


 African-themed Spice collection on a colourful patched Thai table runner

Rather than picking all your crockery from a supermarket, you can pick some pieces from a crafts market. This mixing of cultures can be appealing. The spice set sitting on a patched Thai table runner with a yellow candle, is simply alluring. Anyone would want to sit down to have dinner in this ambience.


Coffee-table from re-cycled dhow timber in a tropical-feel ambience

You can transform your home into paradise, if decorate it with the linen curtains mixed with African fabric over large windows that bring light to the room.  The centre-piece of  this photo, is a large table made from recycled dhow wood. A dhow is the generic name of a number of traditional sailing vessels with one or more masts with settee or sometimes lateen sails, used in the Red Sea and Indian Ocean region. Dhow furniture in mainland Tanzania and Zanzibar is made by using strong pieces of woods obtained from dhows, beyond repair. This makes its an eco-product.


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