How tweed can weave its magic
Regal and with a rich history, this fabric adds character and warmth to a home
FASHION has always had a firm hold on how we style our interiors, which means that the fabrics on runway models routinely make an appearance in our homes. Tweed is no exception. Chanel’s signature tweed jacket, which first appeared in 1925, is still universally coveted today.
The fashion house even recreated the wool’s distinctive pattern in gold and gemstones as part of its High Jewellery collection this year.
Dame Vivienne Westwood elevated tweed to new levels with her collection of sexy corseted dresses made with the highly desirable Harris Tweed in 1987.
It dates back much further than the 20th century, of course. The Countess of Dunmore brought tweed to the masses in the 1840s. She replaced the clan tartan with tweed, and it was so popular that she began showing it to her rich friends and soon it was being sold around the country.
Since Royals and aristocrats have always loved tweed, it has a refined feel. It has plenty of personality with striking patterns of checks, stripes, herringbone and houndstooth to choose from.
As well as still being high fashion today, tweed offers the chance for homes to feel cosy, yet stylish, especially in colder months.
TWeeD comes in a variety of weights, weaves, and colours. A classic look is a mix of earthy colours overlaid with a contrasting check.
Harris Tweed is a name you will see used by many furniture brands. It is made from start to finish in the Outer Hebrides and must be,
by law, handwoven on a treadle loom by the weaver at his own home. Though the majority of tweed comes from Scotland, some is produced in england and Wales (as well as Ireland and Germany).
You can add character to your living room with seating upholstered in one of the country chic designs.
Andrew Cussins, founder of Sofas & Stuff, says: ‘ A sofa or armchair upholstered in a classic tweed will give you a timeless piece of furniture that is tactile and welcoming, yet naturally stain resistant and hard wearing.’
The Alwinton snuggler chair in a traditional check — bracken herringbone, blue, green, grey or a warming rust (from £1,969, sofasandstuff. — would be an ideal place to curl up with a good book.
If you want to go full throttle on a country pile vibe, plump for an ebony houndstooth tweed or even a statement raspberry plaid fabric for a sofa (prices from £800, next.co.uk).
An ottoman could be a happy addition to a living space or bedroom. Try the Tetrad Lewis buttoned top footstool in bracken herringbone and Brompton tan tweed (from £799, johnlewis.com).
THeRe are plain weaves if you favour a modern, simple approach. For a truly calming ambience try The White Company’s ash grey tweed range.
Choose from a sofa, love seat, tub chair, stool, ottoman or even a luxurious scroll bed (from £400, thewhitecompany.com). The deluxe fabric is made at a familyowned mill in West Yorkshire. Chrissie Rucker, founder of The White Company, says: ‘We believe in timeless designs and select natural materials which become more beautiful with wear and use. Tweed’s natural properties and makeup means it is warm, looks stylish and brings that sense of comfort. It’s also very hard-wearing.’
If you want to inject colour into your scheme, there’s a range of vibrant shades at Neptune for your sofas and armchairs or dining room seating. There’s Bilberry, Marmalade, Olive and Lichen — all Harris Tweed (from £100 per m, neptune.com). An ottoman in a plain ochre tweed will do the trick to add a splash of colour (from £ 275, sparrowand plumb.com).
IT’S not just big-ticket pieces that are adorned with tweed. A traditional check lampshade comes with the option of pheasant feather and 12- gauge gun cartridge arrangement for added drama (from £30, countryabodes.co.uk). At the same online store, the Pompom lampshade in pink tweed is edged with playful velvet pompoms (from £40).
A patchwork tweed cushion will bring cheer to any seating area (from £95, harristweedshop.com).
Dressing your windows with tweed curtains is a surefire way to keep draughts out. Choose from 21 fabric options at grahamsandersoninteriors.com. Get a quote online if you have the exact measurements (£87.47 per metre plus the cost of making the curtains).