02/22/2013

Textile Trends: Colorful Patterns

by Erika Woelfel

Let me count the ways textiles work for you:

1) They have beautiful colorways. Textiles are a great place to start when trying to pick out colors, or match to paint and other decorative objects.

2) They soften a space, bringing warmth and comfort to a room. Upholstery, bedding, window treatments, table top runners, place mats and decorative pillows are where fabrics are most often used.

3) Their infinite variety in surface pattern, material and texture means you can choose anything to fit your style.

Shiny jewel-toned fabrics make an office setting feel more upscale.

Water-colored florals mix with bold accent colors in a dining area.

Upholstery with geometric patterns found in a living room.

One of my favorite places to find textiles is a place called SR Harris in Maple Grove, MN. This is one of the best-kept secrets of the fabric world. For anyone who loves textiles, SR Harris is mecca. It’s a wonderland for fashionistas, seamstresses, quilters, crafters and anyone who loves the allure of color, pattern and design. People from around the world go here because it really is a one-stop shop for any kind of fabric or sewing project. Picture a 30,000 square foot warehouse packed floor to ceiling with bolts of fabric in every color, texture and pattern. Plus, the

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prices are incredible and stock is always changing. Truth be told: I’ve never sewn a stitch in my life, but I’ve been lost in here for hours. It becomes a scavenger-hunt for remarkable materials to use on trend boards and collage/scrapbook projects.

A word of advice: Give yourself plenty of time to shop SR Harris. Four or six hours is not unreasonable. Also, if your significant other doesn’t know the difference between velour and velvet, leave them at home. Unless they want to push the cart, the last thing you need is someone trying to shepherd you out before you are ready to leave. If they insist on coming, a Fleet Farm retailer is located not far down the street.

http://www.srharrisfabric.com/about.html

Two of my favorite textile designers are Tricia Guild and Orla Kiely. Remarkably, both are from the U.K. When visiting the Maison & Objet show in Paris, the Designers Guild booth is a must see for color and pattern trends. If you’re ever in London, Designers Guild has a fantastic showroom on Kings Road. Orla Kiely is known for bold modern patterns. Her bedding products are sold at Anthropologie and on Amazon.

http://www3.orlakiely.com/

http://www.designersguild.com/fabric-and-wallpaper-showroom/fabric/

Some trend picks we’re seeing in surface pattern details:

Modern leafy patterns take on a structured and geometric look.

Plaids in light neutral and pastel colorways.

Outlined or transparent botanicals in light neutrals have a modern retro appearance.

Bold botanical colorways.

The use of birds with floral themes is being used in different ways. Birds can either look classically realistic or whimsical and fun. Some patterns show “hidden” birds swooping in amongst the branches. Other designs show birds positioned along with regulated geometric forms.

Playful illustrative elements for foodies and pet lovers. Cakes, coffee pots, baking equipment make them perfect for kitchens.

Whimsical animal patterns for children’s rooms. Fantasy animals and animal “landscapes” are a popular trend.

Colorfully yours,

Erika

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