Design at Altitude: Add texture and layers with throws, pillows and heavier fabrics
Design at Altitude
With chillier days coming, it’s time to add warmth to our homes.
Texture and layering are some of the most overlooked aspects of interior design. It’s a tangible way to add coziness to a house. We all naturally gravitate toward touch, but sometimes it’s a challenge to incorporate fabric and layers into a home. Texture and layering, which come about naturally this time of year, add depth, contrast and warmth to a room. Using nubby textures, cozy throws, warming colors and interesting accents, we can relish the cool, crisp fall weather while importing visually interesting elements into our homes.
THROW IN SOME WARMTH
We often talk about throws — soft cashmere, thick wool or even fleece — and how they make a room cozy and welcoming. Try using these different textures throughout the house to create a different look and feel. Overall, texture influences the look and feel of a room, in a subtle way.
In the summer, we may think of linens or printed fabrics. Come fall and winter, we want fabrics with a more emphatic weight and feel — think embroidered or heavier fabric. We even love silk in the fall and winter months because of the bold hues and color saturation. Deep, rich colors create a textural feel and provide a stunning visual backdrop, as well.
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DIFFERENT TAKE ON TEXTURE
An entirely different take on textures is cowhide. It’s wonderful as a rug but even more unexpected as wall covering; it’s interesting and warming to a room. It works well anywhere but especially here in the mountains, where we tend to use more rough or natural textures and fabrics that simply compel you to touch them.
Nubby, warm gray or dark-brown fabrics create an entirely different look. I recently updated our counter stools with fabulous heavyweight gray fabric. I was pleasantly surprised when my daughter also noticed it. It was a small change but made a new look in the breakfast nook. In another room, we used heavily textured fabric on a chaise. Not ready to reupholster a sofa? Incorporate a luxurious throw onto the back of a sofa or on the chaise for added layers.
Textural wallpaper is a fun and interesting way to add “pop” to a room. We love grass-textured paper throughout the house — in a powder room, behind a bookcase, even on the ceiling. It’s light in color but provides depth.
Not ready for wallpaper? Adding texture to a smooth surface — think a bulky 3-D wall hanging on a smooth wall — makes the object stand out. A favorite fireplace of ours is done in reclaimed wood. The bulk and weight of the artwork stands out but doesn’t overwhelm the room. It ties together beautifully.
An easier way to add visual interest without drilling holes or finding different art pieces is through pillows of different weights, shapes and fabrics. We can’t talk enough about leather. A rich brown paired with a fluffy faux-fur pillow is lovely, inviting and cozy, perfect for a chilly fall afternoon. For a more masculine take on the room, add pillows that have a hand-stitched feel or a deep-hued plaid. Texture doesn’t mean coarse, so a pillow can be plenty soft but still have a sturdy feel to it.
We challenge you: Look around your house. Does it feel like something is missing? It’s probably texture. Use textures and layers to elevate your design and show that you use all of the elements to create a homey space. Get in the spirit yourself — we’re loving faux-fur vests, hand-knit sweaters and even textured leggings for the fall. A hat with a pom? Divine. Start small, and who knows where it will take you!
Yvonne Jacobs is the president of Slifer Designs and loves the look of layers and the use of textures throughout her home. For more inspiration, visit http://www.sliferdesigns.com.