Wabi-Sabi: The Art of Imperfect Beauty

21st August 2017

By Collette Black

Wabi-sabi (侘寂) – the discovery of beauty in imperfection; the acceptance with the cycle of life and death.


We all seem to be searching for authentic interiors, something with a little more soul. Filling our homes with beautiful items that have character and charm, irregularly shaped with scuffs and scrapes that tell a story. This is wabi-sabi. Embracing the natural look, flaws and all; accepting change and letting go of the idea of achieving or preserving perfection.

Wabi Sabi 3

Naturally beautiful from Wabi-Sabi Welcome by Julie Pointer Adams

It’s quite a nice mind-set really, a little more laid back and relaxed. It doesn’t matter if you scuff your marble worktop or chip the dining table, over time the marks will all join up and create something quite unique and lovely. The book I found some of these pictures in, wabi-sabi Welcome, talks about using this mentality to de-stress entertaining taking the pressure off and making it all round a more enjoyable experience. It’s a really sweet book if you do find a copy, I think we may even have one or two left at Cotes Mill.

Wabi Sabi 2

Terracotta pots and comfy living from Wabi-Sabi Welcome 

Creating interiors with natural materials is an easy way of achieving the wabi-sabi style. I love the textural elements – chipped plaster, worn linens and battered old tables. At the end of last year I became completely captivated by the beautiful simplicity of the Oliver Gustav Studio in Copenhagen. I came across these brilliant photographs by Line Klein and was mesmerised by the soft colours and textures and how perfectly imperfect it all felt. I find them infinitely charming and actually had a little fan-girl moment earlier this year when we happened to walk past the studio on a trip to the beautiful Nordic city and I actually got to peep in.

Line Klein - Oliver Gustav Studio 2

Studio Oliver Gustav Copenhagen by Line Klein

Line Klein - Oliver Gustav Studio 1

Studio Oliver Gustav Copenhagen by Line Klein

But it’s not just me, the interiors world seem to have embraced this imperfect, aged look too. We’re even accelerating the process using ammonia and a whole host of other things to create our aged copper worktop or the beautiful patina on Steph’s handcrafted cup handles. For me, the most wabi-sabi deVOL goody (apart from the heaps of really cool antiques available) is our Crackle Pendant Light. Cracked and wobbly by design, each has its own unique charm. Claire, our resident potter, brushes the pendant in an iron oxide solution before washing it off to reveal the little cracks that naturally occur during the firing process. Instead of hiding this natural imperfection, it becomes their main feature, it is the reason that they’re so special.


The deVOL Crackle Pendant Light

– Discover more about the Oliver Gustav Studio here.

– You can order the deVOL Crackle Pendant Light by either giving us a call on 01509 261000 or emailing enquiries@devolkitchens.co.uk. You can learn a little bit more about these pendants and watch a cool video of them being made here.

Need any help?

Cotes Mill
01509 261000



St. John's
020 3879 7900

Tysoe Street
020 3837 5900



US Showroom

New York
+1 212 210 6269


Need any help? Please email:

Cotes Mill 01509 261000

St. John's Square 020 3879 7900

Tysoe Street 020 3837 5900


US Showroom


New York  +1 212 210 6269

  UK & Rest of World

Change to US & North America
© 2020 deVOL Kitchens.
Cotes Mill, Nottingham Road, Cotes,
Loughborough, LE12 5TL.