Culture Trip: Barcelona

Travel remains a leading source of inspiration for Devas Designs and we are always excited to explore and discover cultural hotspots across the world. Recently one of our team visited Barcelona, a city bursting with colour and culture.

Here's a guide to our must-visit cultural sights in Barcelona:

1/ Museu Picasso

The Picasso Museum houses one of the most extensive collection’s of Picasso’s work with over 4,000 exhibited pieces. Comprising five medieval stone mansions, the museum is itself a beauty to behold with beautiful courtyards and winding staircases. Much of the collection focuses on Picasso’s formative years and the masterpieces he painted during his early teens - while not his most iconic works, they set him up as an artist of immense character and skill and it’s interesting to see his continual stylistic changes. A particular highlight was the room dedicated to his famous Blue period as well as a collection of Cubist paintings. A staggering collection in a stunning setting, one of our must-see Barcelona sights.

2/ Gaudi in Barcelona: Sagrada Familia, Park Guell and Casa Batllo

Sagrada Familia - It would be impossible not to mention Antoni Gaudi’s architectural masterpieces, his most distinctive creations are in Barcelona. The city’s shining glory is the Sagrada Familia, the giant basilica famously known for its continued construction which commenced in 1882. It’s a wild combination of Gothic and Art Nouveau forms and once inside, the stained glass windows cast a myriad of rainbow colours across the space.

 

Park Guell - Perhaps our favourite of Gaudi’s creations due to its natural outdoor elements. It sits on Carmel Hill with views across the city, and provides a beautiful interplay of natural forms and mosaic decorated structures. The main section is ticketed, but the beautiful gardens remain to free to visit, their tall trees provide calm and shade above the bustling hot city in the distance.

Casa Batllo - A smaller but no less impressive construction by Gaudi in the centre of Barcelona. It encapsulates Gaudi’s unique take on Art Nouveau design with its elaborate facade covered in broken mosaic tiles. The skeletal-like balcony details and curved patterned roof again call on organic forms and fluidity. Inside the tiled room and stained glass windows are just as beautiful and arresting as its exterior.

3/ Barcelona Museum of Contemporary Art (MACBA)

For those looking for a more contemporary experience, Barcelona’s Museum of Contemporary Art, aka MACBA, is the place to go. MACBA’s collection dates from mid-20th Century to the present day and is known for its hard-hitting modern displays - when we visited there was a riotous exhibition about the influence of Punk on modern art.

Philippa's Philosophy and Design Tips

Philippa Devas is the Founder and Managing Director of Devas Designs. Here, she tells us a little about her design philosophy and offers some top tips.

What philosophy do you think shapes your design style?

I think it’s important that interiors are interesting and aesthetically beautiful. Above all, my philosophy is about creating elegant and practical spaces where people feel comfortable and enjoy entertaining. My passion for art, furniture and textile design has always inspired my work. I love to work collaboratively with clients to discover their ideal living space and develop the most perfect environment for their lifestyle.

Do you think there are certain things we should never compromise on when creating an interior? If so, how can we save money at the same time?

The areas I believe one should never compromise on are; the interior architecture, the structural work and the services – if your spaces don’t work (proportionally or practically) then the interior will never feel right. When it comes to saving money or if you’re working to a tight budget I think it’s possible to create an interesting interior by focusing on one or two exceptional features. Using neutral, inexpensive materials alongside them can really set off these key pieces. I often introduce splashes of colour that tie in with cushions or a rug, which can create a really striking effect.

When it comes to luxury finishing touches, what are your go-to pieces?

My favourite luxury detail is beautiful linen, new or antique. Whether it’s linen sheets, a tablecloth, napkins or hand towels, they always feel and look wonderful.

Project Insight: Spada Yacht

The Sea, once it casts its spell, holds one in its net of wonder forever.

- Jacques Cousteau -

At Devas Designs we’re always excited about taking on interesting and unique projects, especially new styles and spaces such as this Spada Yacht. It was a challenge, but we rose to it and the whole project was completed in less than three months.

Our client needed an interior that was in keeping with the yacht’s design but that would also be an environment suitable for a family with young children. 

The yacht was redecorated using plain and printed linens that established a sense of elegance and style. We also introduced hand-blocked fabrics for the cushions to bring in dashes of colour and pattern while keeping a sense of simplicity.

The master cabin followed a nautical theme with the addition of blue and white Toile de Jouy patterned cushions.

The dining cabin is equally elegant and crisp, decorated using linen and cotton fabrics in grey and blue-green hues. The silver and nickel wall lights and lamps contribute to the stylish look of the interior.

Springtime Inspiration

Spring is the time of plans and projects

- Leo Tolstoy -

With Spring in the air we wanted to share an insider peak into Devas Designs' head office in Chelsea. Our upstairs drawing room is centred around a colour palette of pastel blues, greens and greys … the perfect colours for a Springtime mood board. 

For this room’s colour scheme we took inspiration from this unusually pale coloured Ziegler carpet. Its pastel tones with hints of earthy red and green instantly caught our eye.  With these colours in mind we chose an eclectic selection of cushions that each have their own character whilst following these same colours.

The two terrace windows provide a beautiful, fresh light throughout the day, which perfectly harmonises with the pastel tones. We kept the curtains simple, choosing white linen to maximise the light. The walls were painted with an off-white so that the light softly reflected back onto itself.

We love incorporating antique pieces into modern interiors, especially when they tie in with the colour palette. This green decorated jug is an antique Staffordshire piece. The sea shelled table top was initially a single frame artwork which was later turned into this stunning table.

The room also features several paintings including works by Tim Woolcock and Edward Seago.