May 28, 2019
As you step into Elaina’s home the smell of incense rushes over you! An inviting energy carries you in. You’re greeted by two sweet kittens and two young boys eager to say hello! Her husband Nathan in the background is serenading you with his guitar! The interior of her home is colorful and eclectic, emanating happiness! A few items stand out right away. The vintage Turkish rug in the entry and a beautiful velvet turquoise sofa that sits in her living room. Every item in her home seems to have a purpose and a story. But there’s one item that she claims is her favorite piece in the home and it’s hard to miss. It’s a beautiful Balinese tapestry that lives above the sofa in her living room! It screams life and most definitely has a story…
While I was living in Bali, managing our Bali projects, I would constantly be sourcing for our various villa projects over the course of a decade. During that time, I fell in love with some of the vintage Balinese textiles. Pieces you would find throughout the markets and small shops in Bali. I particularly loved the textiles that told a story, held history and shared a meaning.
Within the first year living in Bali I found the most amazing textile shop in Ubud that sold antique textiles from all over Indonesia and south east Asia. The woman that ran it was the sweetest Balinese woman who knew the history and origins of every textile in the shop. During one of my early visits to her shop I discovered a gorgeous colorful piece that was indigenous to Bali and depicted a scene from the epic Hindu tale, The Mahabharata. Having studied this text while in college I was immediately drawn to it. The Balinese have such a distinct style of illustrating their Hindu mythology and it spoke to me.
I purchased the textile, framed it and hung it in one of our villa projects. As the years went on I came to realize that these particular textiles were hard to come by. They were rare, therefore all the more special. Those that knew me well knew how much I treasured these pieces of history and art. I think because of my studies and understanding the meaning behind the design, I appreciated these particular textiles and grew to cherish them. They were a special way to tie Bali’s history and roots into the villa designs that we did over the years.
My last year living in Bali, my closest friends sourced one of these rare textiles. They had to search far and wide and talk to the right people and they found the perfect one. They framed it beautifully and gifted it to me on my birthday. It meant so much to me and it was the perfect gift. As I was preparing to leave the island, a place that had embraced me and blessed me with so much during my time living there, I carefully packed it away.
It was loaded onto a container and sent back to California where it now lives centerstage in my home. I look at it everyday and am flooded with memories of my beautiful Bali life.
Do you have a favorite item in your home? Is there a sentimental piece in your space that has a story? We would love to hear! Share your stories with us, we’re suckers for this stuff!
Love, The Sisters