Eager to embrace the maximalism trend without risking kitsch? The key is in the fabric

By Lauren O'Neill | 01 Mar 2021 | Style, Design

Our interiors expert highlights the three key trends bringing bold colours, plush comfort and sustainable style into any home

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* Penny Morrison

Our home has long been the place we turn to for comfort – it is where the heart is, after all – and it is fair to say that it has never played a more vital role than it has in the past year. The amount of time spent within the confines of our own four walls is at a record high and the place that was once a supporting act in our lives has become the central character.

The home is no longer just somewhere where we retreat at the end of a long day or hastily drink coffee and glance at the news ahead of the morning commute. It has now assumed the role of workplace, gym, and in some cases school, as well as providing the backdrop for our (virtual) social calendar.

It comes as no surprise then that lockdown has shone a spotlight on interior design, with people seeking quick, contact-free, ways to add glamour, colour and, most importantly, comfort to their environment.

Enter fabric. When it comes to injecting warmth, colour and depth into your interiors, introducing fabrics into the mix is simple yet effective. Tactile and inviting, layers of texture inspire relaxation as well as offering something interesting and dimensional to look at.

CUTTING A RUG

Nothing feels more luxurious than treading barefoot on plush carpet but, if you don’t want to forgo the chic style and durability of wooden flooring, don’t underestimate the power of a rug to transform your space. From modern brushstroke patterns and jute to traditional woven silk styles, the floor can act as a fifth wall for these luxurious works of art.

And they don’t just look the part. Rugs are fast becoming a hot commodity, with 17th- century antique Persian and Oriental rugs selling anywhere from £25,000 to £25m – the most expensive rug sold fetched nearly $38m (£27m) at auction in 2013. With that sort of investment, it’s understandable that one might not want the dog to sleep on it. Instead, an intricately, hand-woven rug can be just as eye-catching when hung as a wall tapestry, retaining its value and ready to be passed on from generation to generation.

“Persian rugs are some of the most incredible pieces of art. Every piece made is completely one of a kind, brought to life by talented artisans that create their masterpieces one knot at a time, all by hand,” says Camilla Ahwazian of Lilla Rugs. “These rugs can take anywhere between nine months to five years to weave one single piece. There is definitely a new appreciation for them, as more and more people veer towards sustainability and craft. They ooze so much character and are the perfect way to make a house a home.”

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* Lilla Rugs

DRAMATIC DRAPES

Window dressings have been around for centuries, favoured for fashion as well as function, and they have made something of a comeback as we move away from the minimalist Scandi style of the 2010s and a collective preference for pared-back blinds over sweeping curtains.

The trend for a more cosy, maximalist interior style has been growing steadily in recent years, and this changing attitude of ‘more’ over ‘less’ in the home has seen a boom in dramatic styles of drapery.

When it comes to curtains the options are vast, from natural linens and sheer voile to ornate damask or velvet hangings – a commitment-free way to change the face and feel of a room.

Traditionally, curtains were used to stave off draught and block out light, as well as offer privacy from inquisitive neighbours. Now, though, they have more of an aesthetic appeal. If measured correctly, floor-length curtains can make a ceiling look higher and windows appear bigger. The key is to hang them from the highest point possible, and allow for them to be wider on both sides than the window itself.

RESTORATION REVIVAL

With an increasing interest in sustainable practice throughout all areas of our lives, there is a renewed love of antique or inherited pieces of furniture sweeping the high-end interior world. Reupholstery is a fantastic way to give these tired pieces a new lease of life while creating a unique item that is personal to you.

From headboards and ottomans to footstools and armchairs, tactile, cocooning pieces are the order of the day. Think plush sofas you can sink right into complete with bouclé throw to wrap around you as the night draws in.

The fabric options are endless and, depending on how bold you are feeling, these items can bring a riot of colour and pattern to the home. If you prefer something a little more low key, work with layering of colour and texture to create interest, focusing on warmer tones and rich, cosseting fabrics such as velvet and silk. For those who like to experiment with clashing colours and designs, 2021 patterns are expressive and full of life – painterly strokes and wild florals, with a trend for embroidered fabrics that will infuse added texture.

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* Adam Nathaniel Furman x FLOOR_STORY