ISSUE 12  |  Spring Forward

The Buzz in Belgium: Local Color for Sale

March 26, 2014 1:00 PM

BY Justine Hand

The Belgian design blogs are buzzing over Couleur Locale and we understand why. Owner and shop designer, Ruth Walleyn, a self-described bower bird, traverses the Low Countries and the globe in search of local color–rare vintage pieces as well as handcrafted and artisanal finds–for her storefronts in Antwerp and Knokke, Belgium, and her new online shop, which ships worldwide. Beautifully styled and presented in a lofty setting, the Couleur Locale collection is designed to introduce, as Ruth puts it, “design from the four corners of the earth, globetrotting inspiration for your home.”

Photography and styling by Paulina Arcklin.

Above: Couleur Locale’s finds are gathered in a soaring loft space. Shown here, a white farmhouse table is lit by Nelson Sepulveda’s cloud-like Chinese light, the Ay Illuminate Z1, with a cotton cover over a bamboo frame,  €320. (The lamp is also available in a smaller version, the Z5 model, for €275.) The wooden stools are a mix of handcrafted pieces from Indonesia and Danish Have a Seat Stools (€79 each) with wooden seats and metal legs. 

Above: Linge Particulier linens from France make for an inviting bed. The Linge Particuler Fitted Sheet is €105; Flat Sheet, €155; Duvet Cover, €190; and Pillow case, €16.

Above: The beanbag chair for grownups, ZilaLila’s Nest is knit in Nepal from 100 percent New Zealand wool; €549.

Above: Storied pieces from different places and times are presented against an airy, light-filled background.

Above: A dramatic vignette is lit by one of our favorite hanging light designs: flax rope lamps by Christien Meindertsma (the Single Flax Light is €220 and Flax Five Lightshown here, is €710). Also by Meindertsma, the knit wool Urchins Pouf (small, €530, and medium, €900), available in yellow, blue, red, and gray.

Above: An eclectic array of vintage and ethnic goods line the stairs.

Above: Couleur Locale is also ready to lend character to your child’s room with a kid’s section that includes Maison Indigo’s elephant made in the Netherlands from recycled denim; €65

Above: The Couleur Locale look is fresh and relaxed–and because so many of the goods are one of a kind, the inventory is constantly changing.

Above L: Cubes used to display tableware. Above R: A wall stocked with Happy Lights, a line of wool-wrapped globe lights designed by Couleur Locale owner, Ruth, and her partner, Hendrik. The Big Lamps shown here, are available in four sizes starting at €19 each, and come in 44 colors; they can be used as table lamps or suspended individually or in groups.

N.B. Discover more rare goods from Belgium in Where to Stay (and Shop) in Antwerp. And join Gardenista for a visit with Fashion’s Favorite Fleuriste: Thierry Boutemy in Belgium.