Home From Abroad

Returning home from time spent living abroad as an expatriat can be complicated. Straddled between two countries, and often across two continents, you are faced with the challenge of creating a lovely home for your family long-distance, whilst juggling the priorities of finding new schools, re-connecting with friends and family and starting new jobs. On top of that, in this case, our client was building their home from scratch.

We  had the opportunity for our first “Get Started” session when the client was visiting England. We continued the process through a series of Skype calls, visuals and email.

The starting point for the whole project was the camel artwork which the client loved and planned to bring back from Dubai. It was positioned to take centre stage in the open plan kitchen and in capturing some of the bright colours and fun memories of the family’s time away, it was a great way of linking their time abroad with their new life ahead. It also instantly communicated a sense of humour and set the tone – quite literally – for what was to follow. Nikki, our Decobuddi, used the colours of the camel painting to inspire her palette for pops of colour throughout the house, carefully weaving them into each room to bring to life the foundation of calm, contemporary neutrals.

It can be disappointing to discover that favourite pieces of furniture that look great in expat accommodation are not so effective in English homes. Our clients were under no illusion. They knew that the large Indonesian furniture that suited their style of living in Dubai wouldn’t fit their new lifestyle. Much of the first stage of the project was concerned with determining the best furniture layout and designs to suit the new house and the way that the family chose to live their life.

Here in the kitchen we sourced the furniture and lighting from Holloways of Ludlow: Chairs: Gubi Beetle dining chairs in blue velvet. Table: Cross Oak Dining Table by Matthew Hilton. Lighting: Berlin “molecular” pendant. The rug is from Designers Guild. The final touch was the introduction of some vibrant house plants which serve to connect the house with the garden.

Once the style, palette and layout were determined, Nikki and the client collaborated to develop more detailed designs across each room.