By Nikita Sheth, Interior Design Editor
African accents go beyond poorly imitated animal prints, mass-produced masks and random carvings. African décor is dynamic, diverse and inspiring. It is a mistake to amalgamate the different countries comprising the African continent to encapsulate a generalised ‘African design style’. North, East and West African countries all offer unique crafts, objects and pattern.
There are many methods which can be used to inject a touch of Africa into an interior space, but my personal preference is decorating with handmade woven baskets. With an emphasis on fair trade and artisanship, woven baskets perfectly intersect a global and raw aesthetic. The raw materials are evocative of dry savannahs, whilst the colours accenting the baskets are reminiscent of the sun-burnt earth and evening sunsets.
Functionally and culturally used to hold grains and rice, African woven baskets add an organic quality to a space. In a modern context, they can be utilised to store away those ugly-looking necessities found in any home (think dirty laundry to electrical cords)!
Not limited to floor decorations, woven baskets can also add visual interest to a wall. The baskets can be used, either singularly or collectively, to create a 3D wall feature. Such a feature gives a space a sense of depth and adds texture and height to a wall, particularly where the baskets are grouped.
Celebrating the art of weaving and taking cues from natural elements, African woven baskets complement other design elements in a room, adding another dimension to the overall design theme.