We’ve looked to Scandinavia for design inspiration for decades, but at this moment we’re shifting south to the Netherlands. Tulips! Bikes! The careful use of color everywhere from coffee shops to galleries and gift shops. The attention to clean lines, simple (but quality) design, and orderliness is so welcoming and warm. There are giant potted palms in every windowsill.
No wonder some of the greatest painters of our time chose to stay and paint within these cobbled streets and canals with their gorgeous mirrored images (Vermeer, Rembrandt, Van Gogh to name a few). Charming? Without a doubt. We could’ve eaten up every reflected sunset with a spoon—it was a visual feast with each passing hour. Read for more Dutch inspiration and ways to bring a little gezellig into your life.
Holland is tulip central this time of year. And yes, it is an undeniable theme everywhere you go. For some reason it doesn’t feel overplayed, though. To mix it up, the Dutch combine bright blooms and dark palettes—we saw this oeuvre utilized everywhere from street art to kitchen art to shop backdrops. Dark, peculiar, stormy, and sweet. How can you not feel this? Put this mural anywhere.
Fleurir Mural, $698
This is a customizable piece that is shockingly gorgeous. This painter creates flowers “in all their states with an emphasis on those that break through the threshold from dark to light, from seed to stalk to bud to full extravagant bloom.” And we just digitally dropped the mic for her.
We gasped and then instantly emailed this collection to our best design-minded friends. With earthy tones that are both masculine and feminine, this might be the dreamiest batch of tiles ever curated. Historically significant and a touch edgy, this look is timeless in any space.
Palms and jungle decor aren’t going anywhere. We saw gorgeous fresh potted palm plants in every window in Holland. Paired with bare white walls, they lent a fresh pop to shops and homes alike. And Dutch folks typically leave their windows bare and open, letting natural light and florals work their magic in a room.
Palm Forest Wallpaper, $53.99
So many of the shops in the Netherlands let the art and plants truly do the (design) work. It is kind of like walking through different art galleries everywhere, except that they are coffee shops and wine bars and bed and breakfast nooks. Choosing a gorgeous, dramatic piece (one like this would be perfect above a bed) and applying modern, simple techniques everywhere else is such fresh approach.
Fall Feelings, $389.99
Amsterdam is famous for its bikes. Moms on bikes, carrying their little ones in a front carrier. Old men pedaling their groceries home. Couples leaving date nights on tandem bicycles. There is something so sweet and adorable about living life this way. While we can’t vouch for the safety, we were charmed to pieces that the main mode of daily life is on two wheels.
Decluttering is the name of the game. Modern is everywhere. Scale back on things, and go with bare white walls, some gorgeous plants, and quality design pieces. This was a repeated (and fairly Scandinavian-looking) motif we saw in every charming space.
Setting a proper place at the table is just such a lovely thing to experience. Always strong coffee, always with a saucer and a tiny spoon. We adored the way the Dutch honored eating and drinking with a style that encourages slowing down, savoring the moment. And it’s easy to emulate at home with this gorgeous set.
Plants everywhere were grown in this artful manner. It takes up less space and trains plants to grown in a certain shape, while keeping them healthy and out of the way from things that might harm or stop the loveliness. This cylindrical planter is a beautiful design element in and of itself.
Cylindrical Planter, $74.99