Articles Interior Design The Local Touch: Home Décor that is Distinctly Filipino

The Local Touch: Home Décor that is Distinctly Filipino

Almost every Filipino home will have wooden furniture, rattan ornaments, and a plethora of indoor plants. That’s just the local touch.

Filipino interior design is nostalgic in its ideals, warm in its disposition, and resourceful in its execution – much like Filipinos themselves. The plentiful environment and rich culture both lend to what we consider as distinct design elements of Filipino décor style. From the overuse of rattan furniture to the decision to use inherited family treasures as focal points in a space, it’s the local touch that makes this style truly unique and beloved by many.


Indoor space with wooden buffet cupboard, rattan one-seater, woven rug on a pale wooden floor, and variety of decorative elements for interior design styling

Wood is warm, comfortable, and organic - all descriptions that the Philippines is known for. The tropical country is flourishing with natural elements and cultivates a culture of hospitality; there's no wonder these facets are reflected in the way Filipinos approach life, art, and design. Aside from its abundance in nature, wood is a great material that persists in Philippine weather. This material's universal appeal and flexibility (having come in many shades and shapes) make it a favorite amongst interior designers, furniture makers, and home decorators. From flooring to big ticket furnitures such as beds and seating frames, from cabinetry to small decorative sculptures and religious relics - there is a space for wood to be incorporated in every Filipino home.

Native Textiles

The Philippines is rife with weaving traditions across its many diverse communities. From binakel of Iloko region to patadyong of Negros to bunga sama of Basilan's Yakan community, there is a local weave that is linked to your heritage wherever you may come from in the archipelago. Incorporate your favorite native weave patterns - and support the local communities who keep these traditions alive - in your most used textiles such as bedding, living room blankets, and even outdoor towels and upholstery. These intricate patterns and bright colors will surely breathe life into your space.

Rattan Weaves

Two rattan chairs facing a green outdoor dining set with plants on the foreground

Almost every Filipino has a rattan basket lying around somewhere in their residence, either as a utility storage unit or as a piece of decoration. Most Filipinos - have at least 3. Think fruit trays, laundry baskets, and storage cubbies. Taking it a step further, rattan is also a prominent material in bigger furniture pieces inside and outside of the home. An extremely durable and low-maintenance material, rattan is particularly favored in outdoor spaces and beach houses.

There are a variety of weaves to choose from (e.g. solihiya or sunburst pattern, wicker or classic braid) and an endless array of home items where rattan is a viable material or make.

Heirloom Pieces

Open layout space with an antique display table for religious figurines, a wooden lounger, and single daybed

A regard for family values is emblematic of Filipino culture, and it is in giving precedence to these relations that make giving and receiving heirloom home pieces a beloved tradition among families and friends. Many Filipino homes will showcase an antique or two, typically passed down from their grandparents or further. Bauls (storage chests) and dining tables are just some examples of family treasures that are typically found in Filipino homes. For smaller spaces, heirloom items can take shape in the form of ornaments or vases, or paintings, plates and cutlery.

Indoor Greenery

As mentioned prior, many Filipinos love to introduce bits and pieces of nature into their personal spaces - from all sorts of plants (bamboo shoots, flowering succulents, walking growths) to seashells, rocks, and crystals. The Philippines, blessed with sun year-round, makes for a great place where indoor plants can thrive. And with such an abundant and evergreen outdoors, how could you not enjoy the fruits of Philippine nature and make use of them in your home?

Classic Filipino interior design is largely characterized by the use of natural, local materials and home pieces that carry a lot of sentiment. The Filipinos' high regard for tradition, for family values, and for the environment are reflected in this unique yet inclusive design style. Enjoy this distinct interior design style in a place of your own; browse through our properties for sale in the Philippines here.