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All About Textures

Oooh, sumptuous textures! Of the three main elements of décor — style, color and texture — this is my favorite to mix, match and work with.

Remember the master bedroom from our last column? The inspiration piece was a painting (you can’t see it in this photo, but you’ll find it in the Gallery) that was my jumping-off point for the room’s modern style and color palette. But the real story here is texture.


Texture, as I like to say, is anything your hands or eyes can linger on. Especially in a bedroom, texture features prominently in fabrics. You can buy pieces made with fabrics that you can mix and match, of course, but designers do things differently. I’ll start with swatches, then custom-upholstered furniture, special-order window treatments and have pillows made to bring a room alive with just the right textures and colors.


Here’s my makeshift color board on a desktop, which include fabrics I layered to see how the tones would work with one another. The patterns don’t need to match. They work effortlessly together yet give enough of a jolt for surprise and contrast.


If you’re keeping your space simple, instead of filling it with a lot of things, opt for a few items with sumptuous visual texture. A touch of elegance will go a long way in a minimalist space. Now, where do shapes come into play?

Repetition of a shape helps to reinforce the simplicity of a design. Do you notice the shape that repeats here? It should be fairly easy: There are squares everywhere — in the chandelier, mirrors and the dining chairs, which I selected partly because their squarish chrome-bases mirrored the huge legs of the dining table.

The first swatch, on top, is in the window roller shades. Then you see the bolster pillow and the varying neutrals that went into the upholstery. One of my favorite touches is the brown zebra print that’s on the swivel chairs. Can you see how the layering of texture and pattern makes this bedroom one of a kind?

A cool and unexpected texture is the coarse yet cozy hemp rug under the bed, whose layers of blues and taupe echo the painting and walls. The wood bench has a velvety chenille top and the upholstered bed is covered with a sumptuous complimentary cream fabric.

But really, what brings the room together is the elongated bolster pillow made of Kelly Wearstler fabric in an electrifying print that looks like waves of bark.

Next time, in the last of this three-part series, I’ll share with you my favorite part of this bedroom: glass magic mushrooms that give it a real “wow.” Hope that caught your attention! Be sure to check back in two weeks.

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