Choos­ing the right fab­ric for de­sign projects

Winnipeg Free Press - Section G - - HOMES - By Marc Atiyolil

DEAR Marc: Af­ter read­ing other home­own­ers’ de­sign dilem­mas for some time now, I have de­cided to de­sign my liv­ing room. I’m work­ing on a tight bud­get, so I won’t be able to re­place my fur­ni­ture. The sofa and chairs are in good con­di­tion, so I would like to re­uphol­ster them and paint the walls. I went shop­ping the other day for fab­ric and fell in love with this bold-pat­terned fab­ric but I don’t know if I can redo all my fur­ni­ture in this same fab­ric. — Amy Dear Amy: When I am brows­ing through my fab­ric se­lec­tions for a space, I al­ways keep this mantra in mind, thus en­abling me to se­lect a fab­ric that is bold enough to stand out and make a state­ment, yet blend to­gether in the over­all de­sign.

The key to se­lect­ing the ap­pro­pri­ate fab­ric pat­tern for a space is to have the fab­ric re­flect your cho­sen colour scheme. This is quite im­por­tant. Many home­own­ers will choose their colour scheme af­ter they have made all their pur­chases, which will cause headaches in the end. De­sign pur­chases are some­times im­pul­sive and emo­tional. We have all heard some­one say, I just had to have it, it’s per­fect! I know it doesn’t re­ally work in the space, but I will change around the wall colours, buy a new sofa, then it will work!

Mean­while, if the home­owner sticks to the set colour scheme when pur­chas­ing all the de­sign el­e­ments, there is a great chance the project will come on bud­get. Same goes when se­lect­ing fab­ric. Bring your colour swatches to com­pare with the fab­ric pat­tern and colours. Ask your­self if the fab­ric over­pow­ers the colour scheme. The cho­sen fab­ric should stand out, yet blend to­gether with the colour scheme.

If you want to use a bold fab­ric, then I sug­gest not us­ing the fab­ric on all the

De­signer spa­ces ex­ude many dif­fer­ent tex­tures, pat­terns and colours. Ex­plor­ing these de­sign el­e­ments can eas­ily be done by group­ing fab­ric sam­ples with colour swatches and see­ing which ones work well to­gether. Ask your lo­cal fab­ric sup­plier for ad­vice on which fabrics can be suc­cess­fully placed to­gether. Many of these re­tail­ers have an eye for fab­ric and, there­fore, they will be able to guide you in the right di­rec­tion dur­ing your re­uphol­ster­ing project.

Suc­cess­ful re­uphol­ster­ing projects are all about or­ga­ni­za­tion. Pre­pare a folder for the project, which holds im­ages of spa­ces that have in­spired you, and a list of all the in­for­ma­tion about your cur­rent space (room and fur­ni­ture di­men­sions, and an in­ven­tory of the room’s con­tents). Take a few pic­tures of the room at dif­fer­ent an­gles and put them in your folder. Ev­ery fab­ric sam­ple and colour swatch col­lected should be kept and stored in the folder, as well. This way, when you’re brows­ing through fab­ric sam­ples, you are not shop­ping blindly. You can re­fer to your file for di­men­sions, im­ages of the pieces, and you’ll have a clear vi­sion of your space.

— Canwest News Ser­vice

“My de­sign mantra is be bold, be dif­fer­ent, be unique — yet keep it sim­ple,” says Home Trends ex­pert Marc Atiyolil about pick

ing fab­ric.

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