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Asian Heritage Month is the perfect time to contemplate incorporating Far East accents into your home. Here are some ideas!
Bamboo is an incredible, resilient plant that grows in many places around the world, but it is thought to have originated in China. This sustainable, eco-friendly plant grows quickly, thrives in extreme conditions, and there are many different species. An array of bamboo products includes bed sheets, window treatments, flooring, furniture, and home accessories. “Lucky Bamboo” plants are popular ornamental accents, but in fact are not actual bamboo.
Add ambiance to your space with an oriental lantern. These beautiful, delicate, and sometimes exquisitely detailed, fixtures come in a mix of shapes, sizes, colours and materials – a great addition to any interior or exterior setting.
Tranquility, or a Zen environment, can be achieved through a simple, minimalist approach. The elements, finishes and colours need to be carefully considered and chosen accordingly. Earth tones, and soft natural fabrics work well. Natural finishes and elements such as stone and wood are ideal. Eliminate clutter and keep décor to a minimum.
Feng shui is an ancient Chinese philosophy of harmonizing an environment. Elements of Ying and Yang are used to procure a positive qi (energy). Various items are oriented considering the interaction with their surroundings. The five elements in this philosophical system are metal, earth, fire, water, and wood, all of which play an important role within the space.
Along with the chrysanthemum, the cherry blossom is considered the national flower of Japan. Cherry trees around the world are celebrated when they bloom and draw thousands of onlookers. Many varieties of cherry trees are cultivated for ornamental use and do not produce fruit. In a home, the blossoms can be featured in a plethora of applications such as a textile print or as artwork.
Koi fish are especially beloved by Asians and many people keep them as a hobby. In Japanese, koi is a homophone for another word that means “affection” or “love.” Koi colour variations attracted attention at an annual exposition in Tokyo in the early 1900s, and new breeds and variations have continued to develop since then. Koi are now sold in many pet aquarium shops and are available in many varieties, patterns and colours.
The bonsai tree is an iconic piece seen in the interior settings of many different cultures. Bonsai is an art of growing trees in containers or pots. The Japanese art of bonsai originated from the Chinese practice of penjing, and is similar to the miniature living landscapes of Vietnamese hòn non bộ. Similar practices have been adapted in other cultures.
Many deities in Asian religions are depicted sitting on a lotus flower. There are all sorts of wonderful ways to incorporate the lotus in your décor – designs on cushions or vases containing the real plant. It is commonly cultivated in water gardens and is the national flower of Vietnam.
Dragons dominate many Asian cultures. They are fabled figures of power. It is hard to disagree that there is something special and magical about dragons. A stunning, gilded dragon sculpture makes a bold statement and is sure to be a focal point in any interior application.