Accidentally wandered into this one whilst waiting for lunch: a stand alone shop in a tiny mall with contents that caught my eye- probably due to the glittery stock and my magpie nature!
I am always looking for new inspiration but in particular symbols and patterns never fail to start the ball rolling. See below some of the photos I took of my favourite pieces – if you look carefully patterns are repeated and used for key chains and within ornaments.
Red, red pattern pot…
Interesting pattern in a key chain…
…and in primary colours
Beautiful oriental vase
Did you spot the key chain pattern in the red pot design? Faithful Google tells me that it is The Mystic Knot, but is also known as a lucky, love, or never-ending knot. In Buddhism it is one of the eight lucky signs and China the number 8 is considered a lucky number so the resemblance to the 8 makes it one lucky key chain…maybe not such a lucky shop because it always seems to be pretty empty…
I really enjoy it when there is a meaning behind the signs, symbols and patterns incorporated into designs. Even if you do not follow the meanings behind them, I think it gives more meaning, direction and sometimes a historical view…whether it is from a family crest, a religious symbol or even a design that has a use; practicalities have long influenced design.
Something that always makes me smile in the middle east are the Mashrabiya patterns. The architecture mostly blends in with the whole desert colouring but the patterns cut away on the faces or entrances of Mosques, homes and public spaces are wonderful.
Originally, these patterns were used for shading from the sun and gave privacy to the windows of homes. The darker and the smaller the windows, the cooler it is. For a place with so much heat this is absolutely necessary! Now we can depend on cool air conditioned spaces to make us comfortable, the desire for large glass windows over sea views and cityscapes are rapidly increasing and over time the Mashrabiyas have become more and more of a decorative feature only.
I was very inspired by these so we took a trip to visit the old houses of the historical areas in Bahrain…these are the places full of detailing and true desert style houses. More photos coming soon!
Have a creative evening!