The other day I was looking at photos of a multi-million dollar property that was profiled on Curbed. The editors were trashing the décor and I can understand why. It matched in an eerie, unpleasant way that actually detracted from the homes architectural beauty.
Whenever I enter a room that isn’t working I start playing with ideas for how it could flow better and I did the same thing looking at the rooms in this home. My big take away was that it was missing texture, and so I decided to write a blog post about this design element.
Layering textures is a great way to give a space life, engage the senses beyond just the visual and to keep a room from feeling one-dimensional. It’s one of my favourite design elements to play with because it allows you to create interesting spaces using a neutral colour palette, or even the same colour.
The idea is to introduce several different surfaces. There is no formula that fits for every situation, but a common rule-of-thumb is to use at least three textures in a space. For example, pairing a smooth countertop with a tumbled stone back splash and raised-panel doors and you get classic appeal in a kitchen. Pair a sea grass wallpaper against a woolly area rug and a sofa upholstered in a nubby fabric and you’ve got the makings of a cozy den.
Mixing up the textures creates depth, a tactile experience and visual interest. When you see a space that appears to ‘match’, but doesn’t feel pulled together the addition of some texture is often the solution.
Take a look at my Pinterest board: Elements: Texture for examples of how this works and to get more ideas.