Friday, February 26, 2016

Decorating In Old Spanish Colonial Style

Old Spanish Colonial is a design style that I think is simply stunning but have never had the opportunity to work with. An Eye For Design follower suggested that I might consider featuring  this style sometime. Thinking it a great idea, I have spent time researching and while I am certainly no expert on the subject, it has been fun educating myself and gathering images to share. So Barbara, here goes!

Old Spanish Colonial style incorporates design elements from a wide spectrum of cultures and civilizations. The Spanish influence came via the Conquistadors who helped colonize America and we have the native tribes of Mayans and Aztecs to thank for the traditional Mexican elements. This blend of beautiful European architectural elements and colorful tribal art has led to some of the most beautiful decor in the world. You can be assured that with the characteristic warmth and friendliness of this lovely style, you will create an  interior that is welcoming, entertaining, and aesthetically pleasing for your guests.

You can tell from the exterior of an Old Spanish Colonial home that you are in for a visual treat.

From the tile flooring to the rustic wood, painted concrete columns,

and colorful ceramics and furnishings that can be found both inside and outside of a traditional Spanish Colonial style home, you know a color and artistic explosion is right behind the front door.

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Front doors of Old Spanish Colonial homes feature scrolling wrought iron grilles for a rustic, elegant touch. As you can see from the handpainted ceiling and walls, homeowners usually have a passion for art.

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Inside such elements as ceiling beams, old iron gates, grand-scale doors and arches, as well as carved stone doorway surrounds are common to the Old Spanish Colonial style of decorating.

Wall finishes in Spanish Colonial design feature  stucco or plaster.  This heavy texture provides for interesting visual depth. Soft neutral glazes are often used in conjunction with these textured walls for more definition and color.

Familiar elements of Old Spanish Colonial homes include elegant living rooms with colorful walls, textiles, and some old-world accents in rich colors.

Quinta Quebrada, San Miguel de Allende, Mexico

Old Spanish Colonial homes feature painted or stucco walls in warm shades of red, orange, and yellow.

Blue is also a popular color for this style home and you will see it reflected in wonderful tilework.

via Pinterest

Add splashes of color and interest throughout your room with traditional Mexican folk art, pottery or tapestries.

Massive and sturdy furniture is typical of Old Spanish Colonial decor. Bright colors are heavy and seem to work well with the bold look of this style. 

Old Spanish Colonial interiors are accented with traditional Mexican folk art including wooden carvings, statues, religious art and other hand crafted ornaments. Headboards designed from colorful retablos shows off against bright yellow walls in this and the following picture. These accents can be used in various decor spaces in your home like along walls, tables, shelves and also as freestanding objects.

This kitchen with it's whitewashed stucco walls is mixed with dazzling bright accents in shades of red, yellow, orange, green and blue. Sculptural stove hoods are also a popular element of Old Spanish Colonial kitchens.

It is common for a Spanish Colonial style house to have many visually pleasing details,

If you love the style but can't seem to embrace all the bright colors, you can always whitewash the walls, use the brights sparingly, and still create a lovely Old Spanish Colonial interior.

Furniture pieces are typically made of solid woods such as oak and feature sturdy designs with little ornamentation. 

Like I mentioned before images of saints which are carved in wood or painted are also popular in this style.

via Pinterest

Retablos are commonly used in Spanish Colonial homes. A retablo is a devotional painting, especially a small popular or folk art one using iconography derived from traditional Catholic church art. They are usually very colorful and are many times grouped together.

I love the rustic antiques, and wonderful Spanish Colonial artifacts.

A 19th-century Mexican religious painting hangs above the fireplace in the master bedroom of Jane Fonda's New Mexico Spanish Colonial style ranch. You will see doors like this one throughout this type of design style.

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Many times interiors as well as exteriors will feature small chapel type areas.

If you’re looking for a quick way to give any room a Spanish feel, add in some lovely textiles, carved furniture and accessories, and traditional pottery pieces. It can really change up a room.

I believe all styles need accessories to pull off the look, however it is a MUST for the Old Spanish Colonial style home. Look for metal items like these great candlesticks and religious art. Stenciling is another means of wall decor, just make sure you select a pattern that works well with this style.

Tile is often a distinct part of Old Colonial Spanish design.

I cannot read the source of this photo that is written at the bottom right. If this is your picture please contact me so I can credit and link to you.

One of the most sought-after Mexican-style accessory for the Old Spanish Colonial home today is Talavera pottery.The pottery was originally brought to Mexico by Spanish settlers. Authentic Talavera pottery is made in the city of Puebla and a few nearby communities in Mexico. This area contains the high-quality clay from which this pottery is made. 

Talavera pottery has intricate and colorful designs, many of which are influenced by the culture, flora and fauna of Mexico. The tiles are commonly used for decorative fireplace or wall murals, to embellish sinks, as borders for mirrors, windows or doorways, on fountains and in bathrooms

via Pinterest

This type of ceramic is also used to make tiles, flower pots and candle holders.The types of Talavera pottery you can find for the home include tiles, dishware, platters and trays, serving pieces, wall art and other decorative accents.

This wonderful kitchen demonstrates the passion for tile in the Old Spanish Colonial home. Blue and white Talavera is used for colorful accent and the larger Saltillo tile on the floor is a type of terra-cotta tile that comes from Saltillo, Coahuila. The tiles vary in color and shape, but the majority are found in varying hues of reds, oranges and yellows.

The shape of this corner kiva fireplace is also common in the Spanish Colonial home. And of course the religion art that graces it and the large carved wooden doors assure you of the style.

Other familiar elements of Spanish Colonial homes include built-in wall niches usually containing benches.

There is nothing quite like the Old Spanish Colonial interior as it applies to dramatic color. These homes are alive and energetic and what fun they must be.

via Pinterest

For more Spanish Colonial visit

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This blog post was published by Lisa Farmer

Monday, February 15, 2016

Decorating With Blue And White Tulipieres

Tulip Mania: a period in the 17th century where the exorbitant cost of tulip bulbs (recently introduced to the Netherlands from Asia through global trade) caused a frenzied trend as the flower became a status symbol, and the royal as well as the rich desired a means of growing and showing the tulip indoors. Hence the tulipiere or tulip holder. These large, floor-standing vessels with their ornate and pyramid-shape became an instant way to indicate the owner's wealth

Usually made of blue and white Delftware or Chinese porcelain, tulipieres were not designed as vases for cut flowers. Instead they originally were used to force tulip, hyacinth, or crocus bulbs to grow and bloom in the house.

Today tulipieres are used to hold tulip stems or blooms from other flowers. I can't imagine anyone who loves to grow flowers not coveting one. If you are in possession of one of these antique beauties, consideration yourself very fortunate as they can be quite expensive. However there are modern versions of the tulipiere in a variety of styles and shapes so get one and create your own lovely tablescapes.

Carolyne Roehm

The tulipiere is basically a tower shaped vessel dedicated to the presentation of the tulip flower. In the 17th century they were common pieces of decorative art that could often be found in the houses of European aristocracy.They are typically constructed to accommodate one single bulb per spout with a larger common water reservoir base.

The history of blue and white Delft pottery can be traced back to the foundation of the Dutch East India Company in 1602. All through the period known as the ‘Dutch Golden Age’ Delft ceramics produced tulipieres. In fact The popularity of the Delftware trade was actually contributed to the love of the tulip during this time.

Beautiful twin blue and white Delft tulipieres in the Diogenes Room at Dyrham, Gloucestershire, UK .

Today the  tulipiere is a showcase for the beautiful blooms of any flower. They are great accessories for foyers, dining rooms, hallways....the list goes on.

A majority of tulipiere are blue and white and often feature the shape of a pyramid or obelisk. It's design was influenced by the Porcelain Pagoda in Nanking, China.

Pretty as an objet d'art, a
 tulipiere will add a touch of style to your blue and white vignette.

A blue and white tulipiere looks marvelous as part of a tablescape or centerpiece. This one features a lady on top.

Axel Vervoordt

Of all the tulipieres I think the blue and white ones are the most desired. They are so pretty when used in groupings of other blue and white porcelain or Delftware.

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A tulipiere full of flowers will Instantly create a beautiful, balanced arrangement.

Antique blue and white tulipiere at the Victoria and Albert Museum c1690 made for Queen Mary from a design by Daniel Marot a French Huguet who fled to Holland.

Diamond Baratta tulipieres in a pagoda shape

It was trendy at the time to use tulipiere bouquets in the fireplace during the warmer months.

It was acceptable for a large tulipiere to have in excess of thirty sprouts. I think tulipieres look great when used with topiary as they are here in a fireplace at Chatsworth, the residence of the Dukes of Devonshire.

House & Garden, photographer Melanie Acevedo

A bit of holly added to a blue and white Delftware tulipiere will make a stunning Christmas display.

You can see how a tulipiere can make flower arranging a breeze. Fill up the water reservoir, place your cuttings in the holes and Voila!...... instant arrangement.

These blue and white tulipieres show you what pretty accent pieces they can be even if you choose not to use them as vases.

Delft tulipiere at Chatsworth

Tulipieres come in assorted shapes and sizes and with little effort can create a beautiful display for any setting.

via Pinterest

Tulipieres are not all pyramidal. This blue and white one resembles a tureen and has stolen my heart!!

Fan shaped tulipieres were also very popular.

These Brunschwig fils Delft tulipiere vase lamps are not blue and white but had to share as they are also very chic and pretty. 

If the 17-19th century blue and white Delft and Chinese pieces are a bit too ornate for your taste you might want to consider a contemporary tulipiere. They are still perfect for showing off your tulips and other garden blooms.

While the tulipiere had it's heyday in the late 17th and early 18th centuries, it still remains a perennial favorite.

Decorating with today's modern tulipieres puts a contemporary spin on an old-world idea.

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This blog post was published by Lisa Farmer

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