Fabric finesse | VailDaily.com

Fabric finesse

Cassie Pence
Arts and Entertainment Editor

Textiles, according to Slifer Designs’ Marilyn Smith Heaney, are vital to a room’s decor. You simply can’t design a space without fabrics.

To celebrate Slifer Designs 20th anniversary, which happens in November, the firm is hosting a Dream Home seminar series. Open to the public, the industry experts simplify interior design for homeowners. It is Slifer Designs way of giving back to the community that helped build the nationally recognized firm.

Earlier this month, Slifer Designs discussed how to create a fresh new look with fabrics. The firm invited Coraggio Textiles, a luxury Italian fabric line represented by Denver-based Nielsen-Metier, to present its latest fashions.

The term “luxury” is an understatement when describing the textiles developed by Coraggio. The company’s weavers and artists collaborate to find ways to re-create fabrics that are archived in museums and galleries around the world.

“We do the things that others don’t know how to do,” Stewart Teitelbaum, vice president of sales, said.

Taking three to five years to develop the textile, Coraggio’s “doctors of textile” search out old fabric from churches and royalty and reproduce it using practical, contemporary materials while keeping its integrity.

Teitelbaum showed off a drapery made from microfiber polyester, which makes it washable. Weavers then manipulate it to look and feel like silk. That particular fabric runs 130 inches wide, allowing it to cover a very large window without showing seams.

Teitelbaum said people are spending more money in their homes and want luxury textiles.

“People don’t want the quick fix. They don’t want to go to IKEA. They want it to last and feel comfortable with it,” Stewart said.

Heaney, who has been with Slifer Designs for 18 years, said textile trends are going to more texture. Textures can create a rich background.

“Go with solid color, but invite texture in to create a tactile environment. Then, punch up your interior by using brighter color for accessories,” Heaney said.

Heaney discussed what to consider when selecting your home’s fabrics. She said lifestyle, durability, functionality and style should all play into your decision.

“What do you love, what feels good, what makes you happy,” Heaney said.

She advised when selecting textiles not to forget what is already “fixed” in your home, like tile, painted walls and mill work. Rugs and art work are not “fixes,” she said, but should be considered when choosing fabrics. Art and rugs can make a good color palette to begin with. But change is the biggest factor when picking fabric.

“If you like a lot of change,” Heaney said, “begin with neutral colors for the larger pieces.”

For more information on future Slifer Designs’ Dream Home seminars, call Vivian at 926-8200.

At a glance:

More Dream Home seminars

Slifer Designs plans to host how to create a whole new look ” quickly and affordably ” with accessories in July. A fashion vendor will host a seminar on new styles for summer in August. For exact dates and times of upcoming seminars, call Vivian at 926-8200.

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