Using Textiles in Interior Design

21 August 2008 at 6:37 am 11 comments

momsAny serious HGTV watcher realizes the importance of textiles in finishing a room.  A throw on the sofa, a dresser scarf, a thin silk over a window to move with the breeze — all these things add depth and life to a room.  Modern sensibility has moved past the outmoded idea that art is Art only if it hangs on a wall.  Using textiles in design has come a long way from the Indian print bedspread thrown over the couch. 

I maintain that craft done well is art.   Above is a window hanging I did for my Mom a few years ago and mounted behind her valance.  When the draperies close, the elegant hanging is still visible.  If  I had stapled the silk to a stretcher frame, would that make it more “Art” than letting it hang and move with the breeze? 

Kate_floorclothDoes sealing a painting on canvas and finishing the edges, instead of stretching it on a frame make it less “Art?”   Heronkate calls her floor cloths “walkable art.”   She paints them on the heaviest canvas one can buy, and adds glued and mitered hems to make them lie flat on the floor.  Looks like walkable art to me!

Diane_Thorn Diane Thorp of ouno calls her gorgeous hand-loomed linen pieces “window transparencies.”  They are translucent by day but more opaque by night and function equally well as wall hangings or framed art..  barbdyestoquiltBarbdyestoquilt suggests using her hand stitched and beaded torans as valances over windows.  How gorgeous would that be, instead of a standard drapery? 

Table coveringss are no sillyboodillylonger limited to doilies and dining rooms.  Victoria Gertenbach of  Sillyboodilly quotes Frank Lloyd Wright:  Form and function are one.  This gorgeous table runner would be elegant in any room of the house, from a foyer table in the entry to a coffee table in the living room.  It has a hanging sleeve attached to the back, in case you’d like to present it as wall art.  

FireHorseFireHorse Textiles imagined the moment when the sun dips below the horizon, leaving the sky lit with color for this gorgeous tapestry.   She uses fabrics from a variety of sources, including re-used clothing and fabrics she machine dyes at home.  What a dramatic statement this would make in your room! 

So, throw a scarf over a table or a sari on top of the drapery rod over your sheers!  Take your hanging scarf off its rod and put it around your neck for a night on the town.  Fiber and textile art comes in all shapes and sizes, and is a versatile and imaginative addition to your home!  me 



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11 Comments Add your own

  • 1. VanFleetStreetDesign  |  22 August 2008 at 5:12 pm

    Ha! Wonderful piece! I use textiles in my decorating also!

  • 2. FormFire Glassworks  |  22 August 2008 at 10:44 am

    What an informative post! Nice to put out all those options and highlight the work of so many artists!

  • 3. Melanie  |  22 August 2008 at 10:35 am

    Great post and fantastic decorating ideas with your gorgeous silk scarves!!! 🙂

  • 4. Julia Walton  |  21 August 2008 at 1:46 pm

    What an inspiring article with some great ideas in it. Thank you for featuring my wallhanging – I am delighted.

  • 5. Elaine  |  21 August 2008 at 10:24 am

    Lovely blog, I have long used textiles for decoration everything from tables to windows!

  • 6. Mary  |  21 August 2008 at 9:52 am

    I love to decorate with textiles. You’ve given me even more ideas. Thanks,

  • 7. Jean Levert Hood  |  21 August 2008 at 9:01 am

    Janine, wonderful post, and such beautiful works of art!

  • 8. Victoria  |  21 August 2008 at 7:36 am

    Wonderful post and great blog! I will visit again! Thank you so much for including my piece, amongst all of the other beautiful work!

  • 9. Chrissie  |  21 August 2008 at 7:30 am

    Good point, well made!

  • 10. suzeesjubileez  |  21 August 2008 at 7:06 am

    Right on! How limiting and uncreative to think anything cant be used for something else. Scarfs and saris are extremely versatile. Some poeple collect shoes I have scarfs and I do LOTS of different things with them.

  • 11. Dayna/Scottie Acres Boutique  |  21 August 2008 at 7:03 am

    I agree – I have used “neck scarfs” as table runners or window dressings for years. Neckties can be used for tie backs on drapes. All depends on the style of your room and your imagination.
    By the way…love your scarfs and adore the floor cloths that Heronkate makes! I wonder is they are dog piddle proof????


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