Modern Family: Global Influences on Home Decor

From the Family Room to the Kitchen, We Love Global Influences on Home Decor



Photo by Asetti

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For a long time, interior design has brought international flavor into our intimate lives. In the past, incorporating international designs into our daily lives was a trying task; we relied on limited knowledge imported from foreign designers and—if we were lucky—our own travels. While knick–knacks, photographs and other souvenirs from these soul–enriching and educational adventures are memorabilia to be proud of, you can easily trade in tchotchkes for mature design elements, thanks in large part to technological advancements. Today’s technology provides us with the opportunity to bring designers from other countries into our homes—without need for them to even be on the same continent. 

Neil McLachlan Designs

New Zealand

Neil from Neil McLachlan Designs in New Zealand is an interior designer who ships the flavor of New Zealand all the way to California. His clients can easily incorporate flavor from below the equator into their homes, without either party investing in the additional expenses of travel. The proof can be seen throughout the homes of his multiple clients around the world.

In order to bridge the challenges of distance with these clients, Neil has successfully used tools like Facetime to collaborate with clients. He’ll call from local antique stores and show his clients a selection of different, authentic options and ideas for their design. The design style of New Zealand and Australia is unique, delivering a more colonial vibe, a relaxed sophistication that follows in the vein of Ralph Lauren. An effort is made to incorporate contemporary design into the 19th century buildings by using natural materials like wood, stone and glass (all of which are currently trending). Both of these countries embrace the indoor–outdoor lifestyle that is so popular in subtropical locations similar to our own. Neil also points out that these countries are very “New World”— they’re full of immigrants and travelers who influence the region’s personal style; he personally incorporates his own experiences in France and London into his designs. As a client–oriented designer, he is proud of being open to his client’s personal style, rather than dominating his designs with his own, personal taste (a flaw of many stateside designers).