Inside Out Workshop (Feb - Mar 2012 Issue)


Our second instalment of the inside Out and Zen Interiors design workshop took place last month with ten design-loving readers learning all about Arabic interior styles. The workshop, which was presented by Zen's interior-design duo Maudalene Wagner and Hadeel Abu Baker, taught us the basics of this beautiful architectural style that boasts such a rich history. Their presentation transported us back to the grand old buildings of the Alhambra in Granada and Marrakesh's vibrant homes via Tunisia's more muted take on Arabesque design right up to modern-day Dubai and Abu Dhabi. Colourful slides of the glorious Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque and a selection of local hotels that favour this style showed a prevalence for arches, repetition of geometric linear patterns, and flora and fauna incorporated into intricate and elaborate designs. The history of calligraphy and how it can be used in a contemporary interior setting was a highlight, since it's an art form that we are great fans of at insideOut.

Guest speaker Zoran Kisacanin from Glamour Painting Works, specialises in paint effects and art finishes. His interactive talk on the basics behind stencilling and stucco ended with a practical demonstration of these techniques, before everyone grabbed a mood board and armed with advice on space planning and a determination to put the theory of Arabic design into practice, set about creating their own stylish schemes. The winning mood board received a Dh500 voucher from Zen, but everyone walked away with bulging InsideOut bags of goodies courtesy of Zen.