Home Insider Myanmar’s Home Décor Gets a Face Lift

Myanmar’s Home Décor Gets a Face Lift



Traditional Myanmar home décor tends to favor simple, comfortable living over the contemporary minimalist home trends that have swept the West. Extensive use of teak wood for flooring, walls, and furniture often adds warmth and familiarity to the family abode. However, as the country further opens up to the global community, new home concepts and interior designs have found their way into Myanmar homes.

Myanmar is beginning to borrow interior design ideas from not just the West, but its Asian neighbors as well. For example, there is something very eye catching and soul stirring about Thai décor that makes everyone stop a moment to take in the beauty, the aura of peace, and let the soothing ambience seep into his system. While Thailand and Myanmar are neighbors, sharing a long border stretching over a thousand kilometers, there is a striking difference in the décor. Though both display a distinct diversity in designand color, materials and elements from nature, what makes Thai décor different is the clutter-free and rather neat appearance that can be attributed to the use of natural weaves, mats and fabric to complement the hard wood which gives a warmer, softer appearance.

All over Asia, the décor displays certain common elements:

  • Extensive use of wood- Wood is used for flooring, roofing, wall paneling and of course, furniture. It varies from teak to mango wood, and lacquer adds to the superb finish of flawless workmanship. Intricate carving on wood is seen in screens and wall hangings.
  • Handicrafts and other craft works – these are an integral part of the décor to fill in spaces, adorn the walls and every corner of the home. The lavish use of gold and bright colors dazzle and leave the spectator awestruck as he admires the vases, jars, bowls, plates, mirrors, lamps and statues, all of which are made of clay, wood, or ceramic.
  • The spiritual element- Statues of the Buddha are reverently placed in every home. Symbolic of the powerful and omnipresent Buddhist spirituality, they are an authentic feature of Thai home décor bringing peace, serenity and calm.
  • Water feature- Many Asian homes have started adding a water feature like a miniature water fountain, a fish tank or waterfall as advised by the laws of Feng Shui.
  • Adorned walls- It is unusual to find the walls of an Asian home bare. They will almost always have paintings hung, a collection of pictures or plates, wall hangings, screens and so on.
  • Scents and aroma- The aroma of sandal, camphor, lemon grass or other natural soothing scents waft up like a breath of fresh air as you enter. This could be from aromatic candles, scented oils being burnt in lamps or incense burnt in the spirit house
  • Utility and Balance- these are visible, irrespective of the shades and materials used. Every part of the décor serves a purpose and a balance is maintained in interior design.
  • The use of silk and jewel tones- While natural and earthy elements are widely used, at the other of the spectrum one finds bright and flashy colors, jewel tones and silk embellishments, besides curtains, covers, runners and so on.The diversity of these Asian styles makes it easy to blend some of its pieces into the Western home. From the rustic country house to the modern, elegant villa, these accents have the ability to bring the best of Asia’s exoticism to Western contemporary home décor, complementing rather than detract from the original home decor. Ways to bring a fusion of east and westKeep your large pieces of furniture, but add accessories that bring warmth and comfort like cushions and throws, runners on tables and cabinets, mats and rugs. These will instantly make the room colorful and more appealing
  • Infuse tranquility that emanates from statues of the Buddha, whose serene countenance soothes and heals.
  • Bring gentle light and soft aroma into the room with aromatic candles. Similarly incense sticks and natural scented oil lamps not only have the air permeating with their fragrance, but also help to keep away unpleasantness and adverse forces from the home.
  • Additional pieces like chairs and cabinets made out of fine dark wood, will brighten the room against the backdrop of light flooring and painted walls.
  • Create a vibrant environment with the dazzling colors and natural sheen of silk accessories like cushions and drapes.
  • Transform the display areas of the home by placing the finest ceramic creations like vases, bowls and plates, on cabinets and centre tables to bring a scintillating richness into the room.
  • Add simple accessories such as art work including figurines and statues, mango wood vases and bowls, paper lamps and pewter clocks can add a touch of originality to your home.

Where to Buy Home Décor in Yangon

Big brands like Italy’s Marchetti and the exclusive, upscale Casabella, have been around for a long time, but multi-brand outlets like the Living Mall are gaining popularity since they are more like one stop solutions for furniture and home décor.

Teak Villa, Golden Family, Sweety Life, and Gold Furniture offer the best teak, padauk, rosewood, and tamalan wood carved furniture and décor pieces. They accept orders and get the pieces manufactured at their factories in Mandalay, often taking months to deliver. But the quality remains unquestionable and well worth the wait.

The most exclusive furniture one can find is Burma Chindits which operates out of a nondescript warehouse, office cum retail outlet, refurbishing antiques, and using reclaimed teak to carve out traditional furniture pieces in an attempt to preserve the Burmese colonial charm. Helping Hands is another favorite that manages to procure antique pieces of furniture from all corners of Myanmar, restores and sells them.