top of page


A Journey Across Borders

Interior design reflects cultural diversity. It is influenced by traditions, histories and lifestyles from around the world. From the vibrant colours of India to the minimalist elegance of Japan; every culture brings its unique aesthetic to the world of design.


In this blog post, we will explore some of the best-known cultural influences in interior design; highlighting how diverse cultures shape colour schemes, furniture styles and overall design aesthetics. Additionally, we will discuss how to embrace these cultural influences in our design spaces here in the UK.

eclectic living room

Exploring Cultural Influences


1. Asian Aesthetics

Asian cultures, particularly those of Japan, China and India, have left an indelible mark on interior design.


Japanese design emphasises simplicity, natural materials and the concept of Wabi-sabi; finding beauty in imperfection. Zen-inspired spaces promote tranquillity and mindfulness through clean lines, uncluttered spaces and a connection to nature.

Among some of the Japanese elements you may be familiar with are: Shoji screens, translucent sliding doors made of paper and wood frames, allowing diffused light to filter through; Tatami mats, traditional flooring mats made of woven rush grass, offering a soft and natural surface for sitting and sleeping; Ikebana, the art of Japanese flower arrangement; and Bonsai, the cultivation of miniature trees which embodies the principles of patience, balance and contemplation.

Chinese interior design often features bold colours such as red, gold and black, symbolising prosperity and good fortune. Intricate patterns, motifs and decorative elements like lacquered furniture, silk textiles and hand-painted ceramics adorn spaces, reflecting China's rich cultural heritage.

You have probably heard about Feng Shui, the ancient Chinese practice of harmonising energies in the environment. In interior design, Feng Shui principles can be applied by considering factors such as room layout, furniture placement, colour schemes and the flow of energy (Chi) within a space. Key principles include ensuring a clutter-free environment, balancing yin and yang energies, incorporating natural elements like plants and water features, and paying attention to the quality of light and air. By harmonising these elements, Feng Shui aims to create spaces that feel inviting, energising, and conducive to health and happiness.


Indian interior design is known for its vibrant colours, intricate patterns and opulent textures, reflecting the country's rich cultural diversity and heritage. Key features include bold hues such as deep reds, royal blues and vibrant yellows, along with luxurious textiles like silk, cotton, and velvet adorned with intricate embroidery, and mirror work. Furniture is often ornate and carved from rich woods like teak or rosewood, while decorative accents such as brass artefacts, carved figurines and hand-painted pottery add layers of visual interest. Indian interior design also embraces the concept of Vastu Shastra which governs the spatial arrangement and orientation of elements to promote positive energy flow and harmony within the home.



2. European Elegance

European cultures have long been synonymous with sophistication and elegance in interior design. From the opulent Baroque style of France to the understated chicness of Scandinavian design; Europe offers a diverse range of influences.


Italian design is renowned for its elegance, sophistication and emphasis on craftsmanship, with iconic brands such as Poltrona Frau and Kartell leading the way in furniture design.

dining area
Kartell Ai chair

Scandinavian design, hailing from the Nordic countries, embodies simplicity, functionality and natural materials, with brands such as IKEA and Marimekko epitomising the clean lines and minimalist aesthetic.

Other European cultures also contribute to the design scene, with French design exuding opulence and refinement, British design blending tradition with innovation, and Spanish design embracing vibrant colours and eclectic influences.

Together, these diverse design styles showcase Europe's rich cultural heritage and creativity, offering a wealth of inspiration for interior enthusiasts worldwide.



3. African Inspiration

 African design reflects the continent's rich cultural heritage, drawing inspiration from diverse traditions and craftsmanship.


African design elements such as bold colours, intricate patterns and natural textures have become integral components of eclectic interiors. Incorporating tribal artefacts, handcrafted textiles and earthy materials like wood, rattan and mud cloth, African-inspired design adds depth, warmth and personality to eclectic spaces.

Moreover, African design principles emphasise storytelling, community and connection to nature, contributing to the layered and curated aesthetic of eclectic interiors. From Moroccan rugs and woven baskets to tribal masks and batik fabrics, these design elements infuse eclectic spaces with a sense of global wanderlust and cultural authenticity, making them vibrant and dynamic reflections of the world's diverse artistic traditions.



4. South American Spirit

South American interior design styles are a vibrant reflection of the continent's rich cultural heritage and diverse landscapes. From the colourful streets of Brazil to the rugged terrain of Peru, South American design encompasses a range of influences, each with its unique characteristics.

peruvian living
AI Generated image

Brazilian design is characterised by its tropical flair, bold colours and eclectic mix of influences from indigenous, African and Portuguese cultures. Vibrant hues, lush foliage and natural materials like wood and bamboo are hallmarks of Brazilian interiors, creating spaces that feel lively, relaxed and inviting.


In contrast, Peruvian design embraces earthy tones, intricate textiles, and indigenous craftsmanship, with elements like handwoven textiles, pottery and traditional Andean motifs adding warmth and character to interiors. While Mexican design often features bright hues, intricate tile-work and rustic furnishings.



Embracing Cultural Influences

Incorporating cultural influences into interior design in the UK allows us to celebrate diversity and create spaces that reflect our global connection. We can create spaces that are not only aesthetically captivating but also meaningful and reflective of our global community.


Whether it is through colour, furniture styles or decorative accents, incorporating diverse cultural influences enriches our designed spaces and fosters a deeper connection to the world around us.



Mika Design Studio is an interior design studio on a mission to make a positive and meaningful impact on our clients’ lives; inspire them on the use of creativity and sustainable materials to create authentic interiors that organically evolve with them.

We are based in Royal Leamington Spa (Warwickshire, UK) but also operate online nationwide. We provide Consultation and Home Staging services for properties to sell, Re-design & Styling services for serviced accommodation/buy-to-let properties, and Online Interior Design for single bespoke rooms.

Visit our website to find out more about us



bottom of page