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Fabric is a great way to add color, texture, and pattern to your space.  Fabric is commonly found in every room of a home in window treatments, upholstery, bedding, pillows, and many other elements.   With hundreds of fabric types and brands to choose from, fabric selection can be overwhelming if you are unsure of what to look for.  Before starting your fabric search, you need to think about the color scheme of the room, the desired texture and pattern, and the required durability for the application.


There are two broad categories of textiles: natural and synthetic.  Wool, cotton, linen, and silk are made from natural materials.  Synthetic, refers to man-made fibers, which are typically polyester, rayon, and nylon.  Sometimes natural and synthetic fibers are blended, for example blending cotton and polyester to create one fabric.

To choose a proper fabric to meet your needs and preferences, you should first consider the use of the fabric in your project.

Lightweight fabrics, such as organza and chiffon, are a popular choice for sheers, allowing some light to pass through to create a soft, light filtered atmosphere.  Drapery fabrics, which may be natural or synthetic will create more substantial window treatments and provide more options for pattern and color.


Upholstery fabrics are more durable than drapery fabrics to withstand the wear of frequent contact.  Leather upholstery can be a good option because it is easy to clean, durable, and available in many colors and finishes.  Heavier cottons, linens, and synthetics are also common choices that are available in many patterns and colors.  Numerous upholstery fabrics are available with a stain resistant treatment, so keep that in mind.

Many manufacturers are producing green fabric collections to support the sustainable movement, and more will continue to develop in the future.  Many of these are made from 100% recycled materials and environmentally-friendly dyes.  Fabrics made from natural materials (wool, cotton, linen, silk) are also more sustainable and should be favored above synthetic materials for an environmentally friendly space.  Durability is another sustainable consideration because materials that have a longer life need less frequent replacement and, therefore, create less waste over time.


Whether you are creating a window treatment or upholstering furniture, incorporating fabrics into your interior can add softness, sound absorption, and aesthetic style.  In our design projects we always consider how fabric will improve the function or feel of a space.  The kitchen is the room which typically has the least amount of fabric.  When we design kitchens we add fabric whenever possible to visually balance the hard surfaces and help with acoustics.  It is amazing the difference it can make!


The Design Team


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