Aesthetic Adventures: Interior Design Inspired by Positano, Oslo and Mumbai

Aesthetic Adventures: Interior Design Inspired by Positano, Oslo and Mumbai

After months of lockdown, we’re revamping our homes in a bid to transport ourselves anywhere but. In the absence of globetrotting, we’ve picked out the interior design pieces and homewares that will spirit you to Positano, Oslo and Mumbai without needing to leave home.

spent the last few months housebound, I’ve become
increasingly aware of the character and contours of my home. As I
deliberately became reacquainted with each room, I noticed just how
easily certain interior design elements, be it a piece of furniture
or work of art, transported me back to the cities that had inspired
the purchase.

Some treasures were acquired during my travels, while others
echo the aesthetic qualities of the places that continue to inspire
me. During a soirée at my home, a new acquaintance remarked: “Well
I guess there’s no need for me to travel; I can just come and
explore your place. It’ll save me the airfare.”

His comment, while clearly meant in jest, left me wondering (in
my best Carrie Bradshaw voice): can we travel through interior
design? In the absence of globetrotting, I believe that – like
souvenirs or personal photographs – design can conjure the spirit
of specific continents, countries and cities. It can go so far as
to teach you about a culture or make a new location shoot to the
top of your travel wish list.

With this in mind, I’ve curated a selection of expertly crafted
decor that will take you on an aesthetic journey to the arresting
seaside cities of Positano, Oslo,
. Bon voyage!

Travel-inspired interiors: 12 homewares to transport you around
the world

Oslo, Norway

Once the home of expressionist painter Edvard Munch – and likely
a few Vikings before him – Oslo has long been seen as an enigmatic
city; a coastal stronghold balancing between cool, modernist
functionality and a romantic reverence for both nature and
mythology. Imbued with the Norse spirit of endeavour, Norway’s
capital city plays host to the Nobel Peace Prize award ceremony
every December. Throughout the year, travellers come from across
the globe to decompress while sipping coffee, admire its
breathtaking glass Opera House and feel closer to nature in one of
the world’s happiest countries. Nestled on the shores of the
Oslofjord and encompassing several small islands, Oslo is defined
by crisp salt-air, granite sidewalks, towering pines and the
Scandinavian concept of hygge.

Scandinavian wool rug

Hygge, roughly defined as “a quality of cosiness and comfortable
conviviality that engenders a feeling of contentment or
well-being”, features prominently in quintessential Norwegian
interiors. Nordic Knots weaves luxurious rugs that embellish any
space with a boost of hygge. This cerulean-and-cream rug is wonderfully evocative
of a traditional Oslovian colour palette, inspired by the indigo
depths of the Oslofjord and the white mist that cloaks it.

Butterfly Chair

Oslo prides itself on being an elegant hybrid of futuristic and
rustic design. Created with industrial metal, heavyweight black
leather and modernist lines, this leather Butterfly Chair presented by Nordic
typifies the city’s mixed aesthetic. Since leather is
ever-present in the cottages that dot Oslo’s islands, it’s easy to
imagine styling this sumptuous chair with a cosy sheepskin throw
and curling up to watch the setting sun kiss the watery

The Milky Way by Liesl Pfeffer

With its cultural heritage steeped in Norse mythology, Oslo is
filled with visual references to the celestial realm. By far the
most widely represented astral entity is the Milky Way, believed to
be the fabled Bifröst, a blazing rainbow bridge that connects Earth
and Asgard, the realm of the gods. Liesl Pfeffer’s fine-art print
The Milky
, presented by Lumitrix, pays tribute to the spiral galaxy and brings
the majesty of Norse mythology into your home effortlessly.

Fossil Ceramic Bowl by Florence St George

Along Oslo’s winding Akerselva river you’ll find Grünerløkka.
Home to the Oslo
National Academy of the Arts
, its narrow streets are ideal for
window-gazing thanks to the earthenware you often spot within.
Florence St George has expertly captured the essence
of Oslovian ceramics with her penchant for neutral tones accented
by gestural strokes of aquamarine glaze. An ideal gift for the
Scandi-loving minimalist in your life.


As my home city and the epicentre of Bollywood, I’m hopelessly
in love with Mumbai; colloquially known as Bombay. Upon landing in
India’s cultural capital, you’re immediately struck by the city’s
luscious outcroppings of palm trees, its pearlescent beaches,
pastel facades and the scenic “Queen’s Necklace” boardwalk framing
its deep-water bay. Having been occupied by the Mughal, Portuguese
and English empires, Mumbai has a spectacular collection of rare
Indo-Gothic architecture, including the Taj Mahal Palace Hotel and
the Gateway of India. In compelling contrast to its modern
high-rises and sleek bridges, the city is also home to three Unesco
World Heritage Sites, while its dense mangroves provide a bountiful
habitat for thousands of dazzling pink flamingos. Once you lose
your heart to Mumbai, there’s no getting it back.

The End of the Hunt by Karen Knorr

As a creative centre and haven for innovative artists, Mumbai is
a city teeming with fine-art. The End of the Hunt by photographer
Karen Knorr
features Indo-Gothic architecture, soft hues, historical imagery
and a regal flamingo – all elements evocative of Mumbai. For me,
this limited-edition print, presented by Danziger Gallery, is an ethereal representation
of Mumbai’s aesthetic, cultural heritage and affinity for
contemporary art.

Pilar Coffee Table

Designed by the renowned Indian contemporary furniture studio
INDO-, the
Pilar Coffee Table is delightfully similar to pieces
in my home on Mumbai’s Juhu Beach. Its bleached-oak panels speak to
the city’s abundance of light-coloured wood, while its ombre cobalt
finish echoes the rise and fall of the tide. Like the city itself,
this table is cosmopolitan, warm and invites you to come

Jade Green Mirror with Floral Bone Inlay

From the opulent interiors of the famous Trident Hotel to the
Horniman Circle Gardens, Mumbai is synonymous with vivid shades of
green and intricate mosaic-style detailing. Superbly crafted by
skilled Indian artisans, this striking jade-green mirror
embellished with floral bone inlay imbues any space with Mumbai’s
tropical spirit and verdant aesthetic. Graham &
Jade Green Mirror with Floral Bone Inlay is a real statement

Hammered copper tumblers

If you order cold water in Mumbai, it will likely be served in a
copper tumbler. Common in restaurants and homes, these particular
vessels are a hammered locally by TAMRA coppersmiths
trained in this centuries-old craft. According to Ayurvedic
medicine, when used to store water, the tumbler’s detoxifying
properties are absorbed, creating the therapeutic drink tamba pani
or “copper water.” Embrace Mumbai’s best-kept wellness secret.

Positano, Italy

If you’ve ever watched the 1994 cult-classic film Only You with
Robert Downey Jr and Marisa Tomei, then you’ve had a tantalising
glimpse of just how idyllic this famed seaside town truly is. With
its ultramarine waters, fragrant lemon trees and breezy panoramic
views, Positano is a welcome oasis away from the hustle and bustle
of the neighbouring island of Capri. Supposedly named after
Poseidon, the Greek god of the sea, Positano has attracted
creatives to its shores for decades, including the great American
writer John Steinbeck. Steinbeck, the author of The Grapes of Wrath
and recipient of the 1940 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, described
Positano as a “dream place that isn’t quite real when you are there
and becomes beckoningly real after you have gone.” I heartily

Ceramic table and chairs

Lovers of ceramics travel to Positano to visit Ceramiche Casola, the family-owned fine-ceramics
company founded in 1925 which produces furniture and traditional
Amalfi-style jugs. You can often spot them sprinkled throughout the
town. Its iconic circular table and chairs are handcrafted and
painted with lemon motifs by local artisans. Designed for your
patio, these pieces let you embrace Positano’s affinity for outdoor

Antique shell lamps

As a coastal town abutting the Mediterranean, Positano enjoys a
romantic seaside aesthetic, perfectly encapsulated by these
antique Italian shell lamps from Edition 94.
When switched on, the pearl orbs within the ceramic shells cast a
twinkling glow, reminiscent of the candlelight that illuminates
Positano’s famous Marina Grande Beach after dark. A rare find.

Arles 18.05.20 by Francois Halard

You can’t take a step in Positano without being reminded of the
lemon groves which grow along its cliffs. All things lemon are
celebrated, particularly the local production of limoncello, a
divine lemon liqueur. Presented by curator Oscar
, photographer François Harlard‘s recent polaroid Arles 18.05.20 is a delicate study of the fruit
and a nod to artist Cy Twombly who kept lemons in his Italian
villa. The perfect homage to the town of lemons.

Citrus chaise lounge

The most famous hotel in Positano is undoubtedly Le Sirenuse, named
after the Amalfi islands and the sirens believed to swim along
their shores. The exquisite canary-coloured Couch 775, designed initially by Josef Frank in
1938, is remarkably similar to the well-known chaises which adorn
the illustrious lobby featured in the 2003 film Under the Tuscan

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