Psst…want to know the quickest way to add a worldly sophistication to your decor? Look no further than Chinoiserie. This charmingly exotic decorating style has been around for centuries, but it’s bigger than ever.
Chinoiserie (French for “Chinese-esque”) is a uniquely European interpretation of Asian influences dating back to the 17th and 18th centuries, when traders and travelers brought back their wares and sketches of their trips east. Designers began to translate the unique style in all aspects of design, from porcelain to interior decorating to architecture and gardens.
We love the way the Chinoiserie decor instantly adds a sense of history and travel to a room — and all it takes is a few striking pieces or upholstery in a bold pattern to do the trick. Here are our favorite ways to bring the chic style to your home.
This classical style, based on a 150-year-old book on European furniture design, is carved to mimic bamboo. These pieces work in so many places — from entry to living room — and add instant architecture to a space.
Blue and White Porcelain Vase
Blue and white porcelain is a great way to add Asian flair, and it’s beautiful in any interior, from minimally modern to traditional. For the biggest impact, group a collection of vases together on a table. Of course, our framed Blue Vase Art is a fun take on the look.
French pastoral scenes are replaced with pagodas, palaces and bamboo for a delightful twist on toile. The bold blue and white color scheme gives this toile a fresh feel and makes it easy to mix with other patterns, from florals to stripes.
A colorful fret back chair surely achieves the desired effect. We’re die-hard fans of this classic Chinese Chippendale style, crafted of mahogany with rattan wrapped joints. No need to buy multiples — all you need is one to add an unexpected element in a room.
Kiki Frog Knot Pillow
Intricate detailing and ornamental adornment are hallmarks of Chinoiserie. The classic frog knot detail on a pillow adds subtle decoration with style. Group several pillows together on a sofa or bed to achieve the look.
Chinoiserie introduced new shapes and details to Western design. The pagoda style top on our Chloe Etagere gives this etagere sculptural interest. It adds sophisticated flair in any space, from eclectic to traditional.
Find more decorating inspiration by browsing our Pinterest boards.