Incorporating these simple tips into your design ideas can definitely help to make your Malaysian home more comfortable.
This article was written by ExpatGo contributor Jennifer Dawson.
Whether you’re moving to Malaysia for work-related reasons or as a personal choice, it is clear that the country, particularly its capital Kuala Lumpur, offers a lot as a place to live. It has a huge English-speaking community, which makes assimilation easy, and the cost of living is far cheaper than most Western countries and even other Asian countries like Hong Kong and Singapore.
In fact, in a 2021 survey of 12,000 expats, Kuala Lumpur ranked first as the best place to live, getting top scores for housing. However, no matter how good the housing situation is in Malaysia, once you get your own place, you still need to give it a personal touch to make it feel like home. Here are some decorating ideas to get you started.
GO ANTIQUE SHOPPING
You don’t always have to shop for brand-new decorative items when furnishing your Malaysian home. Malaysia is rich in historical and vintage artifacts, and there are a lot of flea markets where you can find hidden treasures.
These are no ordinary pasar malam (night markets), as they offer quirky wares and antique finds that are sure to spruce up your home. If you do find good quality antiques such as floor coverings, be sure to clean and restore vintage rugs properly before using these in your home, and use sustainable cleaning agents to get stains and bad odours out of your rug. Cleaning your antique finds before using them ensures that you bring out their best details without compromising their quality.
MIX TRADITIONAL WITH MODERN
There are a lot of design ideas that you can borrow from traditional Malaysian houses, called kampung houses. These houses usually follow an open-floor layout, which in turn promotes the free flow of air. This layout also allows most homeowners to accommodate more guests during festival seasons.
As such, when designing your Malaysian home, you can also follow an open-floor layout to boost ventilation. Make use of large windows to keep your home cool. This is particularly important since Malaysia is a tropical country and can get hot during the summer season. Also, consider making use of detailed tile-work to incorporate that traditional charm into your home.
Finally, you don’t have to seek perfection when it comes to designing your Malaysian home. Wabi-sabi, originally a Japanese term, is embraced all over Asia nowadays. This principle centres on nature as well as imperfections. Try using natural elements into your home décor, such as wood and plants. This can be a callback to kampung houses as well, since traditional Malaysian homes are typically surrounded by lush greenery. A home that embraces the wabi-sabi principle could have an interior finish made up of cement, plywood, natural wood, along with some vintage and aged pieces. This eclectic combination reflects how a home can embrace and celebrate imperfection and impermanence.
Moving to a new country can be daunting, but you can feel right at home when you start giving your living space your personal touch. Decorating your house, however, does not have to be complicated and costly. Incorporating these simple tips into your design ideas can definitely help to make your Malaysian home more comfortable.
"ExpatGo welcomes and encourages comments, input, and divergent opinions. However, we kindly request that you use suitable language in your comments, and refrain from any sort of personal attack, hate speech, or disparaging rhetoric. Comments not in line with this are subject to removal from the site. "