Thursday, 12 September 2013


Hey friends, I'm starting this topic today by first of all thanking all of you who have been reading my blog posts and either +'d it or reshared or even commented. These are such wonderful, enthusiastic responses and I can tell you that they go straight to my heart where they are all well appreciated. As you all probably know, I am African, Nigerian to be precise. Trying to decorate your home or even talking about the traditional African decor is not an easy fit. Mostly because Africa is a continent with diverse tribes and cultures. In Nigeria alone, the number of tribes can't be listed with much success. The major ones maybe. 

In decorating your home with the traditional African theme, you have to know the basic types of decor that the African decor is grouped into. Note also that you can also mix up two or three group and not be in the wrong. These groups are:
  • Traditional inspired: These is usually the colonial or antique ways of decorating
  • Nature inspired: These include the different climate regions in Africa. They are the tropical rain forest, Savannah, deserts, mangrove e.t.c. 
  • Ethnic/Tribal inspired: Here the culture of a particular group of people can be the inspiration. For example, the Kente material from Ghana can be incorporated into your design
  • Safari inspired: These are basically wildlife features either as paintings, statues or prints
  • Contemporary inspired: This is where the old meets the new and then they blend
For the purpose of this discussion, I'll be discussing the traditional African decor as suggested by the topic. Other themes like the safari and tropical themes will be discussed on a later date.

My Home -mixed safari, traditional
tropical and contemporary

Woven baskets

The traditional African decor is basically comprised of two main colors; browns which some people refer to as the earth tones or neutral and black. I don't know why these are the major colors but it probably has to do with the fact that Africa is popularly known as the black continent. The brown colors range from the lighter hues to deep chocolate. The traditional African decor consists mainly of carvings both modern and those that dates back to the colonial era. The best way to create a traditional African decor whether in contemporary style or otherwise is to accessorize. The furnishings and wall colors can be neutral colors, brown, cream or white, you can even make use of sofas if you are more for the modern style.

When accessorizing, you can go for graphic patterned rugs or mats which can either be spread on the floor or hung on the wall as an art. African textiles from different countries e.g. the Nigerian wax, Kente from Ghana and many others can be used to make throwpillows ( these textiles are now also incorporated in our daily fashion to make purses, shoes, jewelries especially bracelets if you've noticed). Add sculptures which can be made of wood, stone or iron to give it more humph! Wall art and photographs of the African people in cultural attire also help.

Kente Material

African textile material
There are many ways to infused an African themed decor into your space with furnishings and accessories. Examples are;
  • Throwpillows in  African textile materials
  • Rugs, can also be hung on the wall for more edge
  • Paintings and photographs
  • Carved Furniture
  • Artefacts and sculptures like spears, shields, masks, statues e.t.c.
Hope this helps you understand a bit of the African decor. Coming up are the safari and tropical themed decor as earlier promised. 
Stay tuned!!!


1 comment:

Thank you for visiting.