In my introductory blog post to the Live Life Beautifully series I talked about those little things that make you feel good. I believe I used examples like the smell of your favourite meal coming from the kitchen or the way it makes you feel when your favourite song plays on the radio. By the way, does anyone use the word ‘radio’ anymore?

Today we’re going to venture somewhere tropical. To a little island in the Caribbean Sea, which also happens to be home away from home, Barbados. This is one of those little things that make ME smile.

There’s so much more to this beautiful island than sunny skies and its glistening oceans, albeit that’s reason enough to visit. It’s also rich in history, culture and tradition. The people are its backbone.

When we think of the Caribbean our mind drifts to vibrant colours, we think blues, greens and yellows, and rightly so, they can be found everywhere on the island, from the annual Crop Over Festival to the traditional chattel houses, and it only makes sense that colour play a large role in interior decor. You’ll often find a mix of traditional styles from Britain infused with elements from the Caribbean and Africa. Interiors tend to be light and airy, contrasted only by the warm, dark materials of woods like mahogany and teak. Other materials like cane and rattan are typically used in furniture, which add layers of dimension and texture when used in any room. Spaces are often infused with pops of colour reminiscent of the clear ocean waters and the surrounding lush greenery.

Alongside some of the stunning heritage sites on the island, traditional arts also represent part of the culture passed down from generation to generation. With so many talented artisans on the island, you don’t have to look very far to find beautiful pieces of artwork, from traditional batiks and tie dyes to basketry and pottery. Vanita Comissiong captures the essence of the Caribbean through her art. Her works can be found throughout the islands and reminds us of the beauty that surrounds us. Below is a selection of her masterful collection.

There’s also a rich culinary experience on the island that does not disappoint! History and culture merge to create a melting pot of dishes. Enjoy foods like cou cou and flying fish, pudding and souse, fish cakes, bakes and jug jug. I could be persuaded to share one of my favourite recipes on here….

From culinary delights to the island’s architectural history and arts, these are just a small sampling of the rich Barbadian history, tradition and culture. I hope it’s inspired you to try a new dish, learn a new craft, change up your decor or just make you smile.

Live Life Beautifully!

To view more of Vanita Comissiong’s work visit