Everyone has at some point looked around their home and considered turning it into a boho, eclectic, wanderlust-inspired oasis (in fact, every time we see a space by Justina Blakeney, we suddenly need to wear flowers in our hair). Often featuring brazen patterns and eye-catching textiles, bohemian spaces are filled with a sense of wanderlust and adventure.
Bohemian design first made its debut in the late 60s, as people were searching for the unconventional (think: Beat culture). Bohemianism itself emerged in 19th century France, as artists and creators alike would concentrate in lower class Romani neighborhoods. As the French (mistakenly) believed this population came via Bohemia centuries before, they began to associate this eclectic culture with the Bohemian name. Hence, the birth of what we know as Bohemian culture today. Bohemians are often associated with the non-traditional lifestyles of wanderers and adventurers, artists and writers unwilling to be tied down. As for the Bohemian aesthetic, up-cycling vintage and used furniture are key to curating that well-traveled narrative. It’s grown to include sub-genres, like ‘boho-chic,’ as it can easily be adapted to fit with personal preferences. For some bohemian inspiration, check out style icons Jane Birkin, Janis Joplin, and Stevie Nicks!
The recipe for bohemian interiors often includes: heavy use of textiles, distressed and mismatched furniture, bright colors, and eclectic accessories. While wanting to go full Bohemian is tempting, don’t abandon your personal style! There are plenty of ways to add in boho elements without completely changing up your entire aesthetic. See more below!
Add (More) Textiles
The use of textiles is key to creating a bohemian look. Rugs, tapestries, and wall hangings all have a place. Layering rugs is a classic bohemian design trick – it creates a more visually interesting space. Don’t be afraid of mixing patterns either; if the room is styled right it’ll all blend together and look seamless. Tapestries with astrological or nature-inspired motifs are popular in bohemian homes and can be used as anything from a bedspread to a curtain. Macrame wall hangings are a more recent trend, but will add texture and depth to a space.
Rattan is Our Jam
The point of a bohemian home is for it to look lived-in and comfortable. The best way to recreate this feeling is decorate with furniture that has already had some lovin’. Well-worn pieces, especially rattan and cane pieces, will look perfectly eclectic and channel that feeling of comfort and warmth that all bohemian homes should have. Shop consignment stores (or Chairish!) or flea markets to find accent pieces to spruce up your space.
A true bohemian embraces color and doesn’t believe in decorating with neutrals. Common colors used in bohemian design are cobalt blue, fuchsia, green, yellow, and red. Slightly faded or washed-out versions of these colors are also beautiful and will create a softer palette. Using multiple colors in a room is a must – matching doesn’t exist in bohemian design!
Up Your Accent and Accessories Game
Accessories are a great way to cultivate the bohemian aesthetic. Nothing shiny and new will do here – the point is to make all the decor look like it’s been collected over years of travel. Vintage shops are your best bet for this, and whip out any family heirlooms or antiques that have been collecting dust in your attic! Pulling the outdoors in by incorporating succulents, spider plants, or trailing vines into your decor gets you major bonus points. Floor pillows and Moroccan-inspired poufs are fun ways to add more seating or lounge space to a room. Lanterns, vintage chandeliers, and pendant lights are your go-to’s for making your room glow.
So what are you waiting for?! Make a flower crown, buy a plane ticket, find some Boho pieces on Chairish, and get started with your new lifestyle. Namaste!