Hello everyone and to my American friends, Happy 4th of July! I’d like to be in Boston right now awaiting the big fireworks fest (or in Manhattan) as this was our annual tradition when we lived stateside. To bring a little festivity to my July 4th weekend as an expat in Germany, I went to a Schützenfest parade followed by a large fair. It has nothing to do with American independence day but it felt nice to do something festive and funny as it sounds, I left inspired but in a most unexpected way. As the bands marched by, I couldn’t stop thinking about Autumn interiors.
I’ll get to that in a moment but first you may be wondering what is Schützenfest? In short, it’s a marksmen’s festival with a target shooting competition popular in both Germany and Switzerland. And don’t worry, no animals were/are harmed! “At a Schützenfest, contestants compete based on their shooting abilities, for example by shooting at a wooden representation of an eagle. The winner of the competition becomes the ‘king of marksmen’ (“Schützenkönig“) until the next year’s competition.” Quite harmless but there is still a big culture around it. Some men that I saw had over 50 badges on their jackets as they proudly marched by in their traditional gear.
I happen to live in the city where they host the largest Schützenfest in the world with over 5,000 marksmen, 250 rides, multiple large beer tents and a parade. This is not your typical parade though with over 13,000 participants from all over the world, 100+ marching bands covering a little over 3 kilometers though the length is nearly 12 kilometers – so it’s the longest parade in the world and takes HOURS to observe – half a day!
As you can imagine, my two-year-old son (he will be 2 1/2 next month) LOVED the parade. As he chomped on a giant pretzel and watched the bands stomp by, his eyes were huge and curious. It was so cute. Later, we took him to the fest with his oma (grandma) and played the typical carnival games and he ran around pointing to all of the fun signs and lights. I saw everything through much younger eyes and it was all really sweet.
But interiors. Somehow I made a connection to home being there. No clue why. Inspiration is like that though isn’t it? No rhyme or reason. Perhaps after being immersed in this marksmen culture seeing all of those traditional costumes, with lots of green, blue and crimson tones, was the jumping off point. I began to think about how these outfits could translate into interior design but in a fresh, light way and not so much the heavy hunting lodge motif that we immediately call to mind. I imagined rooms like these shown below… Modern farmhouses and lake houses with a bit of a lodge vibe.
GET THIS LOOK:
COLORS: Green, gray, rust, crimson, black, charcoal, cream, white
KEY ELEMENTS: Woven rugs in natural fibers, sheepskin throws, taxidermy, tools, antlers, images of the outdoors (forests, mountains), plaid throws, wool blankets, black iron, suede and leather, woven hangings on the wall, brass, pendant lights with exposed draping cords. Concrete, Raw, natural wood. White paneling. Reclaimed wood. Cement. Matte paint in natural tones. Linen bedding. Horses and livestock in photography, Ceramic tableware in natural tones. Very little pattern except through texture. Plants and herbs and green wreaths, Stripe and plaid is okay for blankets, throws and rugs. Rough surfaces. Most of the pattern is brought in through texture.
SCENTS: Lapsang souchong, fir, bergamot, tobacco, white tea, cinnamon, pine, sandlewood, No.92 Objets d’Amsterdam candle by Marie Stella Marais, SKOG candle by Skandinavisk and Diptyque Feu de bois candle.
AVOID: Glamorous accents that sparkle and shine, jewel tones, white furniture (except like a Ghost sofa or a small stool), Metallic silver, pastels, formal lighting, large area rugs in bold colors, floral patterns, bold geometric patterns. Nothing that feels too special or delicate, roses and delicate flowers, succulents.
What do you think about this look? Does it speak to you?