Setting out for Inspiration
As a designer, fresh eyes are imperative to the creative process. For this I naturally practice many techniques and have many little habits – but one thing that I find most helpful is travel. Getting “out of dodge” so to speak, allows me to see things from a different angle, try things the way someone else might, and turn experiences around on their heads, which is so much a part of the philosophy of Turnstyle Design. Having just returned from one such trip, I thought it important to share some of these experiences and how they inspire and influence my work as a designer. I encourage you to reach out and discover way to incorporate your own design discoveries into your everyday life.
Travel as Tradition
As Europeans living in the US, summer travel with our children has become a much-loved tradition. Each January, we get around the table and discuss what the summer should hold. It’s been Asia – it’s been Italy, France, England, and Ireland, the beach and all sorts of other places. This summer we chose Portugal, because we had never been, and because it was yet another place in which I felt we might get a fresh perspective through seeing something new.
When I travel, I seek destinations that can throw their culture at me in a rather strong way, and Portugal does not disappoint. A more reserved type of people, they are the friendliest and most attentive culture I have seen in a long time. While there, it struck me just how much the world I encounter in my life at home has been turning to technological progress at breakneck speed, while Portugal seems to have been quietly creating and evolving forward within the character of their own culture.
A Culture of Color
There you’ll see architecture that is dynamic and advanced, but not out of place with Portugal’s long-standing traditions. A love of white for example (white is refreshingly everywhere), of street art, of painted colors in the most unexpected places, and, of course, a love of tile. The Portuguese are known for their hand-made tiles, and this culture is one of few that even utilizes tile to cover the outside of buildings.
Can you see the patterns? The colors? It’s incredible, all that hand-made work. There are modern ones, and traditional ones, and the typical blue and white ones. And so the homes just have this extra layer of personality, which is lovely and approachable and inspiring – all things important to my particular brand of Interior Design.
Like many of us, I head out for the summer with all the craziness of life and schedules and commitments bottled up, and return replenished and ready to give my projects a fresh new take. And as my children bubble over sharing their experiences with friends, I am at the ready to TURN STYLE back on its head. I encourage everyone to make time for travel, to put yourself first once in a white, and to see the world with new eyes. If you’d like help creating a space for yourself in which every day feels like a vacation, Turnstyle Design is here to help.