When you live in a different country you end up picking new habits, hobbies and tastes. This also applies to home décor. When I lived in France, I enjoyed buying bouquets at the grocery. Now that I live in Germany, I think that my home décor sense has changed significantly. These are some of the things that have changed:
Who knew windows could be so embellished? I surely didn’t. Windows in Germany (or at least where I live) have lots of schmuck, from mini curtains that cover only half of the window, to stickers, to dangling charms to plants. In Spain, a window is a window. It has curtains and blinds but that’s it. Here, the window ledge is bigger. So, you can put plants, lamps and different decorative objects.
- Front door décor
For what I’ve seen, Germans love to decorate and to have very thing clean. On weekends, I see many neighbours working on their gardens (or in their balconies), cleaning their front door and so on. Both in detached houses and apartments I’ve seen front doors decorated with hanging wreaths, cute figures and plants. We now have a wreath and I might add something else. I just don’t know what yet.
- Things hanging from the ceilings
When we arrived to our flat we were surprised to see three hooks hanging from the ceiling of our living room. It turns out that plant hangers are common here, as well as paper stars and figurines. I have a big paper star hanging just over our dining table. I’m not sure if a hanging plant will survive with our two cats.
- More plants
Apart from décor, the other word I’m repeating ad infinitum in this post is plants. We have acquired a lot of them. It’s not that in Spain people don’t have plants at their home, but it’s certainly not as many. It’s hard to not get more. If you go to Edeka, Rewe or Aldi they always have beautiful plants or flower arrangements. Although plants are used as decoration they have a second purpose, cleaning and purifying the air. You will find that many plants are sold with a label mentioning their virtues according to the NASA.
- Seasonal décor
You can clearly know what season is just by walking on our neighbourhood. As soon as Christmas lights and wreaths are down, bunnies and eggs arrive. Spring brings flower wreaths and flower pots at the door steps that stay until the end of summer, when pumpkins are the queens. Not all this décor is store-bought, in fact I see lots of handmade crafts. Slowly, and with the aide of my little one, we are making our own seasonal décor.
- Warmer lights
In general, I would say that German homes have warmer lights or, at least, they play more with lights, lamps, LEDs, dangly lights and candles.
- Wall paper
In Spain, wallpaper is slowly making a comeback but in general people prefer paint. Here, I see lots of wall paper, above all accent walls. My husband spent countless hours removing coats of wall paper from our apartment. Not fun! We only have two walls covered in paper now. But it is still more than what we had in Spain.
Overall, I think that our house is homier now. Plants, different decorations and lighting make our apartment warmer and welcoming.
Are you also an expat living in Germany? Do you find that the way you decorate your house has changed since living here?