Designer Secrets: Transform Your Space With Texture
When putting together a room scheme most people focus on the colour palette and furniture. Contrast is essential in design to keep it balanced and interesting. If everything is too similar in texture or tone it becomes dull, boring and make it difficult for the eyes to focus. By using texture you can make the most important elements of your room pop.
What is texture in interior design?
Naturally every item has a certain texture to it but when an interior designer states that they add texture to a room they are referring to those pieces of furniture and homewares that have a fabulously tactile quality. From soft furnishings such as velvet cushions, sheepskin rugs, and chunky cotton throws. To harder surfaces such as rough clay vases, shiny ribbed glass, raw wood, rattan and stone.
Adding a variety of textures creates a chic look. For example a linen sofa with a soft pom pom edged throw and embroidered cushions creates an intriguing contrast.
Lighting plays a huge part in creating texture. An ambient glow from a lamp can transform a room with a warm softness. Conversely a bright directional lamp can illuminate and make it harder and harsh.
How can I add texture to my home?
1) Add layers
Combine multiple textural elements to really create a design scheme that is rich and has depth. Start with walls, ceiling, and flooring then the largest pieces for example a linen sofa, then work down in size, for example the rug, the coffee table, etc then add small accessories and soft furnishings.
Texture can appear in a variety of ways, think about the impact or each element; a matt rough handmade ceramic versus a smooth glazed shiny finish. A antique-look patinated metal finish such as our Pineapple Lamp Bases contrasting with the smooth linen shade. A smooth marble fireplace with a woven geometric patterned rug in front of it. Tall spikes of muted grasses with fluffy seedheads as opposed to delicate flower petals framed with stems of eucalyptus.
2) Contrast Fabrics
If your room is made up of one main colour in a variety of tones then you can interrupt the consistency by mixing up the textures of any fabric within the room. Even if your design scheme has multiple shades, using contrasting fabrics prove that colour and pattern aren't the only way to achieve a visual difference. Texture doesn't always have to be obvious, it's the subtle differences as your eyes move around the room that makes it more alluring. For example, if you have a monochromatic or all neutral room design by choosing items that heavily contrast you will bring a sense of harmony and interest.
Vases, sculptures, candle holders, mirrors and picture frames are all great vessels for adding a variety of texture. Styling an arrangement of objects on a table, bookcase or window is a great way to make a considered statement. Be careful not to add too many different finishes in one area as it can look jumbled and random. Look to create an assortment of textures that are sympathetic to one another, add variation and intrigue. Rougher textures are more likely to make a space feel intimate and grounded. Smoother surfaces are more sleek and aloof.
4) Add Botanicals
Plants and flowers are the perfect example of a visual texture. The difference in form, size, scale, shape and colour add a textural effect to any room. Add a contrasting vessel and echo other textures in the room to create a cohesive design.
5) Light Up
Lighting is key to add texture - in both the aesthetic of the light source and also the strength and colour of the light. Warm white light is soft and gives an ambient glow it's perfect for cosiness and calm. Cool white light is brighter and more contemporary that can feel harsh.
Where you position light sources varies the texture, an unlit corner can become cosy and intimate with a soft glow from a lamp. If you don't have plug sockets nearby or want a light on the centre of a table or on a bookcase and don't wish to have wires trailing then use a battery operated lamp for a stylish and easy addition of light and texture.
Mix different styles of light source, choose the right temperature of bulb and spread the light sources at different levels throughout the room to create wave upon wave of illuminated texture.
6) Go Natural
Mother Nature is the worlds best designer - use her for inspiration; natural raw materials instantly "work together" and create depth and interest. Think linens, leathers, wood, silk, marble, wool. Natural fibres and finishes not only look and feel good but they add a subtle richness to a room.
7) Get Reflective
In some rooms such as a bathroom the use of accessories and soft furnishings is far more limited. A sterile and functional space can be transformed with texture. Add reflective surfaces and metallic elements, mirrors can bounce light around, smaller details such as taps can make all the difference, choose a satin finish instead of high shine to create a softer look. Gold or bronze elements are far warmer than chrome or silver. Use contrast again with something like this rough finish vase which will perfect juxtapose against a traditional smooth white or a contemporary matt grey tile whilst maintaining a luxurious look.
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