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Soft furnishings

PUBLISHED: 14:27 14 January 2010 | UPDATED: 15:01 20 February 2013

Rich fabrics make a striking statement

Rich fabrics make a striking statement

It is not just redecoration but well-placed soft furnishings that stamp individual style on a room. Sam Grey takes a look at the big interior design trends in cushions and curtains this year

It is not just redecoration but well-placed soft furnishings that stamp individual style on a room. Sam Grey takes a look at the big interior design trends in cushions and curtains this year

THE need to continually refurbish our homes looks set to continue through 2008 with beautiful fabrics and styles emerging.
As well as adding a new lick of paint or some flock wallpaper to tired walls, rooms can be livened up and refreshed simply from the careful placing of some soft furnishings.

Go vintage
Period styling and design trends are set to continue this year, with the idea of recreating the past high on stylists' wishlists. Now, with the national obsession with recycling and all things green, it is even possible to use those drapes that have been discarded by other people. Really lucky are those who manage to find and salvage well-kept, luxurious drapes used in stately homes, hotels and regal buildings.
And if you do not fancy waiting around for the perfect curtains to be recycled from another home, it is possible to choose sumptuous fabrics, reminiscent of perhaps the 30s, art deco, Regency or even 60s retro, and recreate the look from scratch.

Style with cushions
Floor cushions are still a very big style trend this year, creating a laid-back, bohemian design in bedrooms or living rooms. It is the kind of shabby chic style that is so often sought after but difficult to achieve with mass-produced, IKEA-style furniture and accessories. This year, why not visit the smaller boutiques and find one-off cushion covers and striking fabrics? Failing that, many of us may choose to dig out our sewing machines and easily create cushion covers, quilts and throws for the bed or the sofa with luxurious materials. Silk is great if you are after an Asian-inspired design concept, and pale pastel colours with graphic designs create a more art deco look. If traditional stately home-style soft furnishings inspire you, look out for patterns with raised brocade, velvet, in colours like burgundy and gold.


Pictures from www.colefaxandfowler.co.uk (Manuel Canovas) and www.gpjbaker.com (Mulberry Home)


HOW TO
Create five different looks

It's staggering the difference that carefully thought-out soft furnishings can make. Here are five hot design concepts for 2008:


1. Create bohemian style with large
floor cushions in striking patterned or tie-dyed fabric.


2. Vintage drapes ooze the old-school glamour of the 20s and 30s. Search second-hand retailers for period bargains.


3. Throws, quilts and cushions in brocade and velvet will achieve a Regency stately-home ambience in
even the smallest living rooms.


4. Florals are big for spring. If it's countryside warmth that you desire,
pretty soft furnishings in Laura Ashley-style prints will finish off the look perfectly.


5. This season's safari trend comes off of the catwalk and into our living rooms. To achieve a colonial African look buy natural materials or woven textured cushions and curtains.


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