Decor Inspiration: The Desert


COMPILED BY Robyn Alexander IMAGES ©Stefan Ruiz (Cas Pas), Driaan Lou for Southern Guild, Ricardo Simal

We’ve never felt the pull of wide-open spaces and bone-dry landscapes more strongly than right now. Recreate that sense of endless possibility with a minimal, earthy interior style inspired by the desert.

1. Made from kooboo cane and leather, and large enough to take an afternoon snooze in, this new sleeping pod/cosy nest by Cape Town-based designer Porky Hefer is the perfect addition to any hideaway. Pictured: Mud Dauber Sleeping Pod I by Porky Hefer (edition of two), POA, Southern Guild.

2. These mid-century classic chairs were conceived by Danish designer Børge Mogensen, and combine all-natural materials with thoughtful detailing. They’re still in production today at Danish manufacturers Fredericia Furniture. Find designs with a similar feel in SA at Weylandts and Homewood.

3. Casa Pask is theatre designer Scott Pask’s getaway home in Tucson, Arizona. Renovated by architect Graydon Yearick in the early 2010s, the house combines features of the area’s adobe-style buildings with a pared-back sensibility that makes it a perfect desert retreat. To recreate its interior look, combine textured, bag-plastered white walls with natural finishes and accents in black and brick red – to see more of the house, check out Living in the Desert (Phaidon, R885), in which it is featured. Packed with inspiration and featuring the sort of breathtaking visuals we all expect from design and art publishers Phaidon, Living in the Desert is the ideal coffee-table book to pore over while hunkered down in your very own desert hideaway.

4. Rugs are essential in a desert-inspired space, creating a luxurious feel underfoot while adding subtle elements of colour and texture. Pictured: Typhoon rug in Thunder, R12 000, HAUS.

5. Combine scatters with graphic patterns to create accents. Rough-textured, printed deep orange Turk cushion cover by Sixth Floor, R359, Superbalist and white-on-black twill appliqué scatter, R895, Weylandts.

6. Every desert retreat needs an artwork to inspire contemplation and a connection with the natural world, and this exquisite terracotta clay piece by acclaimed ceramicist Andile Dyalvane does just that. Pictured: Intshatshoba (Maize Stalk Flower), (one-off ), Southern Guild.

7. Add a few baskets for simple storage of firewood, throws, blankets or swimming towels. Pictured: Open Weave baskets, from R595 each, Weylandts.

8. Blending sleek lines with a textured woven seat and back, this laidback lounge chair will add an element of casual chic to any space. Pictured: Edison lounge chair, R7 995, Weylandts.

10. Texture and colour combine to evocative effect in this asymmetrical pure new wool rug by Charlotte Lancelot for Spanish manufacturers GAN. Pictured: Canevas Geo rug by Charlotte Lancelot for GAN, R39 500, Limeline.