It’s Called Connection
Have you ever walked into a perfectly appointed room AND. IT’S. JUST. LIFELESS?
The color scheme works, the furniture is right, the décor and supporting architecture works – but the space still feels somehow flat or it is missing that ‘special feeling’ or ‘connection’ that makes it unique. Usually, the reason is a lack of design texture.
A Defining Factor
A trained interior designer knows that textures and surfaces are the very thing that make a room memorable and unique. Effectively using textures is a defining technique that elevates design to the next level.
What exactly do interior designers mean by “texture”?
In interior design terms, texture is defined as, “the sensations produced by surfaces of objects when touched.” Think about the feeling when walking across a soft carpet as the shag surface tickles your toes, running your hand along a rough-hewn railing, or cuddling up on your billowy soft couch with your favorite blanket.
You don’t even need to have physical contact with a room to feel the power of texture. We all have an intimate deep connection to our “sense of touch” and associations with how something feels.
Texture plays much more than a supporting role in the function of a space. Texture not only brings a sense of completion to a space; it’s what makes something feel like home and is vital to a design’s success. Think of it this way, imagine trying to cuddle up for movie night on a sofa made of stone."Consider how texture will elevate the overall experience of your design, and how it makes you feel within that space."
Texture can add some weight to your space
Using texture to add some visual weight to a space simply means that an object – or space as a whole – has the ability to draw attention to itself. Rough textures for example, are more likely to make a space feel intimate or familiar while slick, smooth textures can make a room more aloof.
I always consider the placement of textures as I design a space. If I want to highlight a rough texture, I will often put a smooth texture directly next to a rough one. It will make the rough object stand out more and give it a weightier feel than if I space them apart.
Contrast is essential when it comes to design; it maintains a sense of balance and also provides visual interest. If everything is too similar, the room seems flat or uninteresting. Using texture is a great way to make sure the most important elements pop.
But, try not to go too texture-crazy; it’s important to strike a balance. I often stick to two or three distinct textures in any given space. I choose three when I want people to take in the space as a whole and two when I want to emphasize a prominent focal point.
Texture is even more important if you’re working within a color palette where the shades are very similar. When I’m designing with a monochromatic or analogous color scheme, I choose items that provide a heavy contrast. This will bring a sense of harmony to the space.
OK great, but what can I do at home using texture?
It doesn’t always take a total redesign to employ the uses of texture to enhance your space. Here are a few simple ways you can use texture in your space:
A lifeless room…
Here’s an example of a lifeless room; however 2001: A Space Odyssey was a good movie!
Good use of texture…
This room embodies good use of texture; it exudes warmth and contrast. The rough textured band on the wall is an appropriately scaled accent.
Textures for a New Kitchen Design...
Here is a mood board for a kitchen I am designing, using the Prodigy brand of semi-stock cabinetry I carry. The wood grain cabinetry for the island contrasts with the smooth white finish chosen for the perimeter cabinets. The window treatment textile, the countertop and the metal screen provide interest visual interest and texture.
Too much texture...
While a good proportion of texture can add interest to a space, it’s important not to overuse it as shown here. This room lacks any place for visual rest.
As Lyons-Archer Kitchen and Interior Design celebrates its 10th anniversary this year, I am proud to have created a design firm that offer a unique, curated kitchen design experience. I carry River Run stock cabinetry, Prodigy and Woodland semi-stock cabinetry, and Prevo custom cabinetry, so I can provide an individualized design, purchase and specification process for the discerning client.
Please contact me for other services, including bathroom and office design, space planning, couture draperies, window coverings and upholstery. I can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, or at 215-860-5059!