This weekend I attended a community event where I had been asked to represent my home county Sweden. I dragged my girls with me (dressed up as Pippi Longstocking and Lucia) and decorated my area with lovely things from Sweden. (Think everything from 18th c. chairs and gray linen to salty black licorice and pop music). I got to meet a lot of people and certainly did my share of PR for the country. And then a couple of well dressed ladies walked up and we chatted up a storm about Swedish design until one of them asked what I thought of Belgian interior design. Ehhh…
An oil painting by Belgian artist Nele Cornelis is a focal point in the foyer.
And then from nowhere information started to pour out of me. And I tell you, most of what I know is because of my talented blog friend who is no stranger to so many of my close blog friends. But if you have not yet met her, huddle over and say hello!
Her name is Greet Lefèvre. She lives in Belgium and is behind The Belgian Pearls. She is someone Belgium’s Cultural Ministry should view as a national treasure .
Here are some lovely interiors from her home where she lives with her family. (Yep, I know!!!)
On her blog you will find images like these. (Yes, go ahead and drool!)
Together with her brother she runs a succesful wood carving company – Lefèvre Interiors. Had I lived closer I would not have hesitated for one second to have my next dining table designed by them.
And what did I actually tell the ladies? Well, I told them that there are many similarities between Swedish and Belgian Design. Both styles include simple, uncomplicated pieces. They both cherish organic, natural materials, textures and colors. We use a lot of gray and white in Sweden and I believe that the further south you go in Europe – the warmer colors. So, I see more of a warmer beige used in the Belgian interiors or rather “Greige” – a mix between gray and beige. Belgian style might also be a tad more relaxed in my opinion and the furniture seems more grand in size. And I think that both styles are against too much color and clutter! Both represent peaceful and serene rooms.
Now, some people in the industry will claim that Belgian style is the “new Swedish”. Of course I will not agree with that! But the style is very attractive indeed. And I am convinced that we are just going to see more and more of it.
There are also a number of blogs outside of Belgium who I follow and who include Belgian style in their reportings. I highly recommend Cote De Texas, Willow Decor, Trouvais and Velvet & Linen. They are all lovely! (And I am sure there are other great ones both in and out of Belgium waiting for me to discover).
A new week, friends! Let it be a good one!