From faded block-printed bedspreads and jewel-toned wall hangings to Colonial era teak furniture and diaphanous mosquito netting, Indian decor is as diverse as it is beautiful. Trying to define "Indian decor" is a futile and reductionist endeavor even for an expert (which I am not) — akin to trying to sum up "European cuisine" in a single blog post. That said, Indian-inspired fabrics and furnishings have happily become more mainstream in the United States. But stores like Anthropologie, John Robshaw and Les Indiennes have only scratched the surface of India's robust home decor. If you are keen to incorporate Indian design — both traditional and contemporary — into your home, read on.
What began as a simple search for affordable Indian bedspreads landed me knee-deep in the sumptuous world of Indian home design. Here is just a sampling. Please add your own sources in the comment section!
An Indian Summer. I only just discovered this Indian blog and I am smitten. The blog is a goldmine of glorious images of Indian and Indian-inspired interiors, both traditional and contemporary. The blog is the brainchild of Bhavna Bhatnagar, a consultant based in Gurgeon, India, who has an exquisite eye for interior design. Check out the site's extensive Links section, which opens up a whole new world (to me) of South Asian design. Image 2 is from a terrific post full of tips and resources for how to incorporate Indian style into your home. Over photos from the IKEA and Pottery Barn catalogs, Bhatnagar has superimposed various homewares (and their sources) that you can buy to transform a standard Western room into one with eclectic, South Asian flair.
- Saffron Marigold. Gorgeous Indian textiles at very competitive prices.
- Fabindia. According to its website, Fabindia is India's "largest private platform for products that are made from traditional techniques, skills and hand-based processes. Fabindia links over 40,000 craft based rural producers to modern urban markets, thereby creating a base for skilled, sustainable rural employment, and preserving India's traditional handicrafts in the process."
- Friends of Tilonia. A US-based, non-profit established to provide marketing and business development assistance to the crafts section of the Barefoot College, in Tilonia, India. The Barefoot College has been working to address basic needs of the rural poor. At the Tilonia store you can find hand-made bedding and home décor.
- Kerry Cassill. Indian-inspired textiles and clothing.
- Delia Shades. Some wonderful Indian-inspired window shades as profiled in Indian Jali Latticework and Borders from Delia Shades.
- Haveli Home. A wonderful Toronto-based store that sells a wide range of Indian homewares, from dressers to pillows.
- Les Indiennes. Pricey but stunning handmade and eco-friendly Indian textiles.
- Soma. Based in India, this company sells a broad range of goods, from kitchenware to linens.
- Sang & Serena Company. This Charlottesville, Virginia based company sells imported Indian furniture and textiles, all of which use traditional techniques and natural materials.
- John Robshaw. John Robshaw's simple and exquisite textiles are a household name these days. His wares are not cheap but they are gorgeous.
- Bhatik. This wonderful English shop does ship internationally, though doing so can be expensive.