Whether you’re decorating your own home or hunting for unique gifts this holiday season, there’s more out there than just what you can get at Cost Plus World Market or Home Goods. With access to the internet and the worldwide trade it provides, you can find special lifestyle products made all around the world. In addition, you can support communities and artisans that would have been out of your reach in years past, and discover artists that might have remained in obscurity without the spread of the international market.
Are you ready to explore new aesthetics and perspectives? Discover some of the best international lifestyle products here and choose the perfect decor, bath, and kitchen products for yourself, your friends, and your family.
While Ukraine might be known for its agricultural prowess, it’s also home to many ceramic artists and their amazing sense of design. Many Ukrainian artists design and handcraft vases inspired by their history and culture. Some artists pull visuals and aesthetics from musical instruments, like the bandura, for their artisan vases, which results in highly sculptural, minimalist pieces that add a lot of interest to any table or counter. Many of these pieces could stand alone because they’re so interesting to look at, but they would also look amazing with an arrangement of dried flowers for added color and visual appeal.
Shop vases in sets to tie multiple elements in a room into one single theme and create comprehensive decor that seamlessly moves from space to space.
Persian rugs might be at the top of your list of lifestyle products, but have you ever considered contemporary rugs from other countries? For example, you can find gorgeously patterned, handwoven rugs from India that will enhance your living spaces with unique prints and patterns of this Asian culture. Other countries with specialty rugs that might inspire your home design include Morocco, Turkey, Egypt, Pakistan, and Nepal. These places each have their own cultural designs, colors, and traditions infused into a carpet or rug.
3. South Korea
From lotions and creams to masks and moisturizers, South Korean products are full of potent products and effective ingredients.
Skincare is always a great gift to give! It’s useful for friends and family and may inspire an at-home spa day. Everyone’s skincare routine should include cleansing, toning, and moisturizing, so those are really great places to start shopping. You can also shop for face masks or hand and foot treatments for more spa-inspired ideas. You might even want to build up your collection of mask products at home so that you can invite your friends over for a relaxing night of wine, movies, and spa care!
4. The Netherlands
Many people forget about the most important home decor element in their space: lighting! If you’re looking into enhancing the ambient, task, and accent lighting in your space, there are amazing designer lighting fixtures that can elevate any room in your home. Browse floor lamps for the bedrooms and living rooms, chandeliers for the dining room, and wall sconces for your entrance and hallways.
Lighting design from the Netherlands is such an amazing choice of lifestyle product because they manage to blend contemporary forms with retro aesthetics to create innovative designs that are utilitarian and attractive. In addition to combining styles and eras, this type of lighting design also mingles functionality and beauty into one usable piece.
Finding a good kitchen knife is an essential part of building up the tools in your kitchen. Many places in the world are famous for their knives, including Germany and Japan, but France is one of the best places to get high-quality paring knives, butcher’s knives, and steak knives. Two of the most famous places in France for knife making are Thiers and Laguiole. Both areas have been forging knives for decades and are infamous in their industry. While Laguiole still has a thriving knife forging economy, the knife manufacturers in Thiers closed down their shops years ago. The only knives available from this area are reclaimed vintage pieces.
When it comes to wall decor, many people prefer something other than fine art or prints. Some choose to frame their hobbies and interests in shadow boxes before mounting them on their walls as centerpiece areas in their homes. If you’re someone who harbors an appreciation for Japanese culture and samurai history, look towards their armor, weapons, and ceremonial accessories for your own home decor. There are many online retailers that carry authentic Japanese swords, including katanas, wakizashi, shirasaya, tanto, and more.
When you shop from stores that actually work with blacksmiths in Japan, you’re participating in centuries of heritage and history. These blacksmiths spend weeks forging, polishing, and sharpening a single blade to ensure it meets the standards of emperors from centuries past.
Even though the mechanical movements of the music box originated in Switzerland, the beautiful decorations and housing were enhanced by woodworkers from Italy. These artisans took the Swiss mechanics to new heights with gorgeous wood inlay music boxes that look as beautiful on the outside as the melodies that play from the inside.
Wood inlay is an ancient technique that uses found materials to create stunning designs on wood pieces. Artists might use seashells, mother of pearl, crushed stones, glass, bone, ivory, and precious metals to imprint patterns onto the main piece. One of the most famous structures in the world, the Taj Mahal, is decorated with layers upon layers of semi-precious stones inlaid in marble!
Products for Your Lifestyle
If you’re ready to infuse unique lifestyle products from the far reaches of the world into your home, now is the time! Explore these options to find accents and accessories for every room of the home. Gift pieces to friends and family for the holidays, or keep these finds a secret just for your own home!