Spotlight On: Textile Art
When it comes to home trends, you can pretty much expect anything old to become new (and therefore, cool) again. This year has seen the renewed popularity of '80s trends many formerly thought would never make a comeback, such as dusty pastels, light wood finishes, glass-and-brass furniture, and black cabinetry and appliances. However, Pinterest's latest report on the rising décor trends for 2019 includes one that precludes the current "Age of Excess" décor: textile art.
Last popular on a mass scale in the '60s and '70s when tapestries were slung across walls and macramé everything created multiple focal points in a room, textile art has largely been associated with dorm room décor (where the inevitable tie-dyed or paisley-print tapestry accessorized generations of hippie phases) ever since. While today's interpretation of the trend doesn't stray far from earlier iterations—macramé plant holders are even back in a big way—the look is undoubtedly more grown-up than what you remember from your undergrad years.
The most noticeable difference with the textile art revival is that the pieces are generally displayed in a more minimalist setting, or at least one that affords plenty of white space around it. In the instances where you may find woven art as part of a grouping, the surrounding works have a more subdued feel. Unlike the dorm-room approach, the textile art doesn't feel mass-produced. Whether it was commissioned from an artist or created by hand, small imperfections or variations in color and texture give each piece unique character.
To see the trend in practice, take a look at some of the many ways designers and bloggers have integrated textile art in a room.
Over the Fireplace
Bobby Berk chose a work by fiber artist Lauren Williams for this high-ceilinged living room. The hanging art breaks up the large expanse of white brick from the fireplace, while the pattern interestingly echoes the rectangular shape of the firebox. The piece is also hung at the same height as the curtain rod and doorway, creating a uniform sight line around the room.
In the Bedroom
For clients who collected textiles from around the world, Taylor Ogle of Taylor Anne Interiors chose to integrate their cherished pieces throughout the home. In the bedroom, she suspended a textile from the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul unframed above the headboard. The shades of white and beige throughout the room create a neutral backdrop for the stunning work.
Above a Desk
Another piece from the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul decorates a desk vignette elsewhere in that same client's home. Here, Ogle chose to display the textile in a contrasting dark frame to "make the textile pop." The textured finish of the table harmonizes with the woven textile for a unified look.
In an Entryway
A short wall is an ideal place to display a longer piece of textile art, like in this Denver home by Stafford Bensen for Havenly. The woven work is layered behind a sleek metal bar cart, instead of suspended above it. Hanging a textile this way creates a backdrop for interesting items on the top level of the bar, allowing for taller items to be displayed without creating an awkward proportion.
Low-slung furniture makes the most out of low ceilings, but often creates a challenge when it comes to art—individual works compete for attention, creating a distracting effect that can make a room feel cluttered and smaller. Carrie Waller of Dream Green DIY has the easiest solution in the form of a long, woven textile that spans the length of the sofa (and wall). The boldly-patterned work fills the space without overwhelming it, with the vertical repeats drawing the eye up to create the illusion of higher ceilings.
Two Works, Two Ways
In an open-concept home in Austin, BANDD Design used two different strategies to display textile and fiber art. In the dining area, a ladder suspends a woven textile without having to fuss with hanging it on the wall. In the living room, a macrame work adds unexpected textural interest to an eclectic grouping. The simple shapes of each piece along with the neutral colors of the frames (and the subject matter) make it all work together without feeling chaotic.
A neutral palette feels anything but boring in a Cabo villa by Jute. The deep stain on the wood bed frame and nightstand bring out the beauty of the grain, while woven fabrics have a light and airy feel. The knotted art above the bed works perfectly with the understated look and organic textures within the room.
Behind the Headboard
Modern furniture and exposed brick get an element of coziness through the addition of a large tapestry layered behind the headboard in this bedroom by Jennifer Gustafson. The dark colors give the textile a contemporary feel, while the angled lines within the pattern break up the horizontal lines of the brick. It's also a great example of how a textile can add interest to the large walls created by a high ceiling.
For a living room that embraces the eclectic, Breeze Giannasio was unafraid to mix a wide variety of prints through textiles. The larger elements—like the tapestry and the rug—have hints of the room's color palette to unify them into the design. You can also see that approach in most of the pillows, with the black-and-white patterned cushions adding modern contrast.
Minimalist Goes Boho
Textile art goes hand in hand with bohemian décor. Usually, you'll find macramé and fiber art in these settings, but woven art with bolder patterns can be a refreshing departure from the expected. Though you'll find macramé elsewhere in this home by The Here Company, the bedroom features a narrow wall hanging that adds a splash of color and pattern to the otherwise minimalist room.
DIY Textile Art
While textile art, tapestries and fiber art can often be found at flea markets at affordable prices, going the DIY route can be a good option if you don't have time for the hunt. You don't have to learn how to weave or knot, either. Emily Connett of the Dossier blog printed photos on cotton fabric for a different take on textile art that anyone can do. Visit her guest post at Bliss Makes for the full instructions.