Posts Tagged ‘Fabric’

Mixing and Matching Heavy- and Lightweight Fabrics

Whether it’s for fashion or for home décor, when it comes to fabrics, we’re often dazzled by colors and patterns more than we are by weight and durability. And while there’s nothing wrong with falling in love with a fabric for its looks, it’s important to make sure that it will serve your purpose well.

Mixing-fabric-weights

In the grand scheme of things, interior fabric weights can be broken down into three categories: light, medium and heavy. A fabric’s category is based on how many “double rubs” it can withstand. Lightweight fabrics cap out at 9,000 double rubs, medium weight at 15,000 and heavy, even higher (note: 3,000 double rubs is equivalent to one year’s worth of use). When it comes to use in the home, medium weight fabrics are the most versatile and can be used just about anywhere. Light and heavy fabrics are wonderful options as well, but can be harder to mix together in a space unless you know what they’re best suited for. Again, this goes back to its strength and durability.

When we talk about lightweight fabrics, think of fabrics such as linen, silk and microfiber. In regards to heavy weight fabrics, think of fabric like wool and velvet. If you have these types of fabrics pictured in your mind it tends to be easier to mix and match them.

Just as with any fabric mixing and matching, try to stick with the rule of three, meaning don’t have more than three patterns in one space. Other than that, it all comes down to where the fabric will be used.

If you have a piece of furniture that gets heavy use, you probably shouldn’t go with a lightweight fabric. Instead, go with something heavier that will be durable through the increased useage. A good example of multiple-weighted fabrics blending together could be something as simple as velvet drapes on the windows with complimenting accent pillows in silk or faux silk on the sofa covered in a medium-weight fabric.  For a wider variety of textures, you could go with something more extensive like tweed or rough linen chairs, a velvet couch, linen pillows and a leather ottoman.

Always remember to tie your fabrics together with a similar color so it makes sense. As long as the fabrics compliment each other in color and serve their purpose well you can have a beautifully decorated space with a mix of both light and heavy fabrics.

When you are looking for a fabric store near you in Georgetown, TX, stop by our Interior Fabrics location in Austin, Tx for great deals on discount designer fabrics. You will find something for every home interior project from gorgeous drapery fabrics to light weight cottons and luxurious Dupioni Silks.

Cotton Fabric throughout the Home

If you’re thinking about updating the fabrics in your home, take some time to consider cotton. Cotton is one of the most universally used natural or cellulose fibers with 18 percent of the annual crop being used for the home furnishing industry (source NCC). In linens alone, cotton is the most dominant fiber, holding over 60% of the bed linen market (sheets and pillowcases) and almost 100% of the bath linen market (towels and washcloths). Although this fiber has been around since ancient times, it is anything but. Cotton, grown throughout 17 states across the United States, is increasingly popular and well worth taking a look at when it comes time to update our home.

alfred-white-cotton-fabricashton natural cotton fabricaccess-natural-cotton-fabricanders-natural-cotton-fabric

Just like every other home fabric out there, cotton has its pros and cons. Some quick facts about cotton that are worth knowing:

  • It’s eco-friendly
  • It’s versatile, strong, durable and soft to the touch
  • It is absorbent and breathable
  • It’s resistant to piling and static electricity
  • It can wrinkle easily (but cotton-poly blends solve that problem)
  • It is easy to clean but can shrink, stretch and take longer to dry
  • It can fade in prolonged sun exposure
  • It dyes well and can take prints beautifully
  • It’s affordable

Best Uses for Cotton Fabric

Using cotton fabric throughout the home is an easy way to add style and color to the space at an affordable price. In the home, cotton can be used just about anywhere. Some of the best uses for cotton fabric throughout the home however, are rugs, window treatments, bedding, upholstery, wall coverings, linens, and accents like throw pillows.

It’s important to remember that there are different grades of cotton ranging from very basic (yet good) all the way to ultra premium. Thankfully this wide variety of fabrics and weaves means there’s really no reason why you can’t find something that will work perfectly in your space. It doesn’t matter if you want silky, rough, smooth, textured, luxurious, indestructible, sheer or thick—you’ll find it with reliable and beautiful cotton.

When you are looking for a fabric store near you in Arlington, stop by our Cutting Corners location in Fort Worth, TX on South Hulen Street for great deals on discount designer fabrics. You will find something for every home interior project from gorgeous drapery fabrics to light weight cottons and luxurious Dupioni Silks.

Guide to the Best Fabrics for Upholstery

It may seem exciting to have an abundance of fabric options to choose from, but without some basic knowledge, the search for the right upholstery can become overwhelming. We hope this guide will help you find the best fabric for your upholstery that will meet both your needs and your style.

Choosing the Best Upholstery Fabric Houston Tx

Now, onto the basics…

When it comes to fabric, it’s necessary to have some knowledge about fabric content, fabric types and pattern types. Let’s break those down a bit.

Fabric Content

Fabrics can be broken down into two categories: natural fibers and synthetic (man-made) fibers. Here we’ll go through a brief look at the pros and cons of each.

Natural Fibers

  • Cotton: soft, absorbent, breathable and durable, but fades easily.
  • Linen: airy, breathable and light, but tends to have hard plant fibers and wrinkles easily.
  • Wool: warm, durable but not the best for upholstery.
  • Silk: strong with a beautiful sheen but prone to fading if placed in direct sun.
  • Leather: tough, easy to clean and ages well.
  • Hemp: durable but wrinkles easily.

Synthetic Fibers

  • Acrylic: inexpensive, maintains shape and resists sunlight however, it builds static electricity and pills easily.
  • Polyester: very durable and comes in a variety of patterns, colors and textures; great for stains, yet doesn’t handle oils (from bodies or food) very well.
  • Nylon: durable and stain resistant.
  • Olefin: durable but can pill easily.
  • Rayon: fairly strong and affordable but stretches easily.

Fabric Type

Fibers are turned into fabric through several different processes. Two popular fabric types are woven, non-woven and printed.

  • Woven fabrics are woven together on a loom and can be made with intricate designs of multiple colors to simple designs of few colors.
  • Non-woven fabrics are bonded, rather than woven together, and are often adhered to a knit backing for stability.

Pattern Types

There is a wide variety of patterned upholstery fabric, but here are some common terms to become familiarized with:

  • Florals (sometimes called Jacquards)
  • Paisleys (tear-drop shape)
  • Body cloths (solid colors and textures)
  • Geometrics (squares, circles, etc)
  • Stripes (includes pinstripes and ombres
  • Plaids (includes checks, ginghams and hound’s tooth
  • Novelties (unusual designs)

Getting Started

Before you start making decisions, there are a few things to consider. Something very important to keep in mind is how the furniture will be used and where it will be located. This will help determine just how tough your fabric needs to be. Two other things to think about are the style of the furniture and the size of the room. This will help you narrow down pattern and color. Most importantly however, is that you need to love the fabric. Upholstering a piece of furniture is an investment, so make sure that it’s a fabric you will enjoy for many years to come.

Need to find a fabric store nearby in northern Houston? Stop by Interior Fabrics located at 6705 Fm 1960 Rd W Houston, Tx 77069, where you will find endless discount designer fabrics for any project!

Guide to Picking Fabrics

Fabrics are a big part of our home’s interior, and while picking the right ones should be done so carefully, it shouldn’t leave you stressed out. Knowing the answers to some simple questions and having some basic knowledge of fabrics can help make the process go from difficult to delightful.

Decorating Ideas that Cover the Fall and Winter Seasons

Before you get started shopping, and definitely before you make final decisions, ask yourself some questions such as these:

  • How will the space be used?
  • Is it an indoor space or an outdoor space?
  • Is it a high traffic area?
  • Is the room formal or informal (minimal vs. regular use)?
  • What type of light does the room have?
  • Are there pets or children?

The answers to these questions will deeply affect your fabric choices and taking the time to sort through them will save you time and money in the long run. Once you have your answers, then you can move onto picking fabrics for your home.

Fabric fibers fall under two categories: natural and synthetic (man-made). Natural fibers are cotton, cotton blends, linen, silk, wool, leather, ramie and hemp. Synthetic fibers include acrylic, microfiber, vinyl, rayon, olefin, nylon, acetate, and triacetate. There are pros and cons to each, which is just another reason as to why it’s so important to seriously consider what your needs will be for your space.

Upholstery Fabric

Color tends to be the driving force behind most fabric decisions, but when it comes to upholstery, it’s highly important to factor durability into your choice as well. Wear and tear can often be attributed to the amount of use, as well as the amount of sunlight it is exposed to. If you don’t want to be replacing fabric frequently then finding something long-lasting is key. Some things to keep in mind while you shop are:

  • Woven (not printed) fabrics with higher thread counts will be the most durable
  • Darker colors will help conceal dirt more easily
  • Leather and microfibers are great for both children and pets
  • Ask for fade-resistant fabrics if your pieces reside near a window
  • Pay attention to fabric cleaning and wearability codes

Always examine the fabric before purchasing it. Tugging it gently with and against the grain will determine the quality (loose threads mean it’s poorly made).

Window Treatments & Other Accent Fabrics

While longevity is important, window treatments and accent fabrics are often based on what sets the mood or makes you happy. With that said, they can have a purpose too. For example, window treatments in a rich color or fun pattern can cure your love of drama or whimsy, but they can help with need of privacy and/or light as well (heavy fabric blocks light; sheers let light in and can create romance).

Accent fabrics are great for those extra punches of style and personality you want to give the space. Multi-purpose fabrics are great choices for those little touches that you like to update more frequently.

At the end of the day, it’s all going to come down to your personal preference. However, having some basic knowledge about what to look for will help you decorate your home in a way that will meet both your needs and your style.

Be sure to check out our beautiful upholstery fabrics in store or online.

Creative Ways to Use Fabric & Wallpaper in Your Home

Sometimes we forget that fabric and wallpaper can be used in far more ways than the obvious. In fact, both can make a huge impact on a space even when used in the smallest of ways. Let’s take a look at some creative ways to use fabric and wallpaper when decorating your home.

Creative Ways to Use Fabric & Wallpaper in Your Home Houston

1)   Add interest to a lamp. A lampshade doesn’t have to stay plain or outdated unless you want it to. If the shade is in good shape, simply recover the shade with new fabric. If the shade is in a solid cover you love, consider wallpapering the inside of it.

2)   Give a bookcase some personality. Adding wallpaper to the backs of bookcase (or cabinets) is a wonderful and easy way to bring color, texture and style to a room.

3)   Create unique flower vases. Simply wrapping some fabric scraps around a glass flower vase can make it something unique. Use fabric glue to hold it in place. Clustering a few vases of various sizes and tying them together with a ribbon can make an even bigger statement.

4)    Make cabinets look custom. Have a beautiful, yet plain glass-paneled cabinet in your entry way or living room? Take some fabric and line those glass panels with fabric. Simply stretch the fabric over the glass and fasten it to the wooden frame using a staple gun. Glue ribbon over the staples if you wish to conceal them.

5)   Dress up your drawers. If you have leftover wallpaper floating around, use it to line the drawers of things such as dressers or desks.

6)   Add flair to your stairs. Wallpaper and fabric can really make a statement on stair risers. Alternate coordinating patterns and cover with acrylic sheeting held in place by decorative hardware.

7)   Design eye-catching wall art. There are plenty of places to purchase wall art, but sometimes you need something a bit more tailored to your needs and style. Fabric panels are one option. Another option is to frame pieces fabric or wallpaper and cluster them together for an eye-catching display.

8)   Cover a headboard. For a custom look in the bedroom, cover a headboard with fabric or simply adhere some wallpaper to it. Either will update the space with some style and personality.

9)   Put a twist on the obvious. The obvious being covering your walls of course! The twist however, is using fabric rather than wallpaper if you’re up for something different. Another twist would be to put wallpaper on your ceiling. Just the right wallpaper can give a wonderful textured look no paint job could achieve.

10) Make a creative memo board. If you have a home office or a nook in the kitchen for notes and such, give it a creative touch. Take a simple corkboard (or artist’s canvas), stretch some fabric over it and staple it into place. It’ll make that to-do list much more appealing.

Be sure to check out our beautiful upholstery fabrics in store or online.

The Beauty of Wool Fabric

When it comes to fabrics used in the interior of a home, the process of narrowing down what will work, or even look the best, can be daunting. There are however, some fabrics that stand above the rest. Wool is one of them. Here we’ll look at the beauty of wool and what makes it such a wonderful choice for an interior fabric.

A Thing of Natural Beauty

Wool, a natural fiber obtained from animals such as sheep, goats, muskoxen, rabbits and camelids, offers amazing physical properties that make it ideal for a home’s interior. Let’s evaluate these properties in more detail…

Wool is extremely durable

Wool is a fabric that can stand the test of time and offer a lifetime of quality, making it a very good investment. This impressive durability can mainly be attributed to its unique elasticity, which allows it to recover much more easily than other fabrics. It’s inability to crush or wrinkle from daily wear and tear will keep it looking its best much longer.

Wool is highly flame resistant

Ever wondered why it’s recommended to smother a small fire with a wool blanket? It’s because the wool fiber is naturally flame-retardant. Without any flame resistant treatments, wool is extremely difficult to ignite. If it does ignite however, the spread of flame and heat release is minimal.

Wool provides comfort in both warm and cool temperatures

Wool regulates temperature and humidity due to the microclimate it creates. Because of the natural crimp, the fibers trap air, allowing wool to provide warmth in cool temperatures. On the flip side, wool is very absorbent, keeping moisture away from the body. This is what allows your body to stay cool during warm conditions. This benefit makes wool a great choice for bedding and upholstery.

Wool is anti-static

Static attracts lint, dust and dirt. Being that wool has anti-static qualities, it tends to stay cleaner much longer than other fabrics. The overlapping scales woven within the fiber also help prevent dirt and dust from seeping in deep, making it easier to maintain.

The Drawbacks

Just like anything else, there are some drawbacks. With that said, the benefits definitely outweigh them, still making wool an ideal choice for your home’s interior. Some limitations about wool you should keep in mind are:

  • Moths are attracted to it
  • It can shrink in heat therefore it should never go in the dryer
  • It can fade if exposed to excessive sun for long periods of time
  • Harsh detergents can cause it to lose its soft luster

When you are looking for fabrics near you in Plano, TX, stop by our Cutting Corners location in Dallas, Tx for great deals on discount designer fabrics. We have something for every home interior project from gorgeous drapery fabrics, colorful outdoor fabrics, and luxurious Dupioni Silks.

Fun With Fabric in the Bathroom

Fun With Fabric in the Bathroom

Bathroom remodels can be quite costly, but in all honesty, you can revive it just by incorporating some new fabrics into the space. Your use of practical versus impractical fabrics will vary the cost, but all in all, updating your fabric choices is one of the easiest ways to freshen the space without breaking the bank. Below you’ll find some ways that will allow you to have fun with fabric in the bathroom.

Shower Curtains

It doesn’t matter if the purpose is for fun or if it’s for drama, a floor length shower curtain can make for a perfect focal point in any bathroom. If anything, this piece of fabric should be the most eye-catching out of all the other fabric choices in the space. With options like florals, stripes, checks, and solids available, you’re sure to find something that will fit your space and your style.

Fabric suggestions for your shower curtain: Cozy, Duffy and Ladbroke.

Window Treatments

Window treatments finish off the look of a room—bathroom included. Not only are they functional by providing much-needed privacy, window treatments can add a wonderful element of texture to the space. When you do add window treatments, don’t forget about those extra details such as coordinating embellishments and drapery hardware that can take your décor to a whole new level.

Fabric suggestions for your window treatments: Kinter, Nina and Ditto.

Furniture Cushions

If space allows for a vanity, then it’s likely you have a chair or bench with a cushion. If this is the case, don’t neglect the opportunity to cover that cushion in fabric that will compliment the rest of your choices. In most cases, the seat can be a quick DIY project!

Fabric suggestions for your cushions:  Debra, Sprint and Ankara.

Embellished Linens

One last place you can incorporate fabric is through linens such as your towels. Carry any fabrics onto items like hand and bath towels, whether it be for the entire piece or just an embellishment.

If you aren’t sure where to begin, a good place to start is with color. Pantone’s colors for 2014 are stunning. There’s bound to be colors that will give inspiration with blues, purples and teals that are soft pastels, mixed with vibrant yellow, orange and blue. You can check out the 2014 spring color report here.

Is Custom Bedding for Kids Worth It?

 Is Custom Bedding for Kids Worth It?

When you look at your child, what do you see? If you’re like most parents, you see a little individual with their own unique personality. In other words, someone similar to you wrapped up in a smaller package. So, why shouldn’t they have something in their room that really reflects them?

Before you can really consider custom bedding however, it’s important to think about the benefits of going that route. Some benefits of custom bedding are:

  • The bed gets the perfect fit
  • The room can be coordinated any way your child wants
  • You get a quality product that’s one of a kind

Often times, when people think “custom” they think costly. Yes, depending on what you want, sometimes it can be. That’s not always the case though. And while there are a variety of bedding ensembles to choose from in store and online, it doesn’t really make them the right choice for your kid.

Going custom doesn’t mean going crazy with having every little piece for the bedding made. Depending on the age of your child (and their tastes) you may only need a couple of things. For example, a toddler can probably live without shams and accent pillows. In a case such as this, you could find one or two fabrics your little one loves to have a toddler-sized comforter made. In all reality, this can cost less than buying a complete ensemble equipped with pieces you don’t need.

Another great thing about going custom is that you can support smaller businesses rather than a chain department store. Etsy is a wonderful choice when it comes to finding something unique. There are plenty of talented vendors with little shops that can make a one of a kind item for your child.

If you’re crafty however, and love to make things yourself, then you can support your local fabric stores by purchasing from them. Many fabric stores showcase their inventory online, making it extremely easy to narrow down exactly what your little one wants for his or her bedroom. While you’re online, check out sites like Pinterest, which is full of ideas, patterns and instructions. Something made by you will be extra special and something that can be done at a fraction of the cost!

One last thing to consider is longevity. Today, kids are surrounded by so many themes, especially ones of things such as cartoon characters and video games. These themes often come and go just as quickly as other fads, leaving you back at square one when it comes to dressing up your kid’s bed. A custom bed set will allow you to stick to colors and patterns, rather than characters. This will often keep the bedding in the room much longer, allowing you to decorate the shelves or walls with those characters instead.

If you haven’t considered custom bedding for your child, then hopefully it’s something you’ll consider now. Remember, custom doesn’t have to cost a fortune. It can actually save you money in the long run and make your child very happy.

Come in to see us inside of SWITCH Consignment in Scottsdale, Az to pick out your favorite fabrics for your next project!

Fabric Care 101

How To Care For Fabrics

Furniture for the home isn’t something that’s changed out frequently, which is why it’s so important to preserve its life for as long as possible. Whether you’ve purchased your furniture off a showroom floor, or had specific pieces custom made just for you, it must be taken care of properly. Here are five guidelines to follow so you can enjoy your fine furnishing for years to come.Fabric Care How to

(1)  Treat the fabric before it’s used. There’s something exciting about purchasing new furniture, but hold off on kicking those feet up until it’s been treated. Not all retailers carry furniture that has been pretreated with stain repellant, but many do. If they don’t, see if they can treat it for you before the pieces are delivered. If not, then you’ll need to shop around for someone who can.

(2)  Take the time to rotate cushions. Your seat cushions benefit from being flipped and rotated just as much as your bed mattress does. By doing this, you are helping your cushions achieve consistent wear. Since cushions are thinner and usually sat upon quite frequently, aim to rotate them weekly.

(3)  Get out the vacuum. Dust piles up everywhere, including on your furniture. When you go to vacuum your floor, take a few extra minutes to run the vacuum the fabric. This will keep dirt from settling in deep, which ultimately gives you a bigger time allowance before a deep cleaning is needed. If you have leather pieces with dirt build up, treat it with non-acidic soap and water. Blotting spots is best, but if you must rub it, do so in a side-to-side motion rather than a circular one.

(4)  Guard from the elements. Excessive heat, light, cold and moisture can be harmful to upholstered pieces. Ultraviolet rays contribute to fading and discoloration, while humidity opens the door to mildew. If space allows, try rearranging your furniture. Fading is inevitable, but rearranging it will slow down the process, or at least make the fading more uniformed. If you can’t keep furniture away from the windows, consider hanging window treatments to block some of the light.

(5)  Be kind. Furniture isn’t indestructible and often times, it takes quite a bit of a beating throughout the years. To prolong your furniture’s good condition, avoid standing or jumping on it, keep sharp objects at bay, and use arm caps to absorb natural body oils.

As mentioned earlier, no fabric is indestructible. If you want to enjoy your furniture for a long time, than it’s up to you to treat it well.

The Basics of Mixing Fabrics

The Basics of Mixing Fabrics Houston

Many people get nervous at the thought of mixing fabrics in their home. If you understand the basics of mixing fabrics however, it doesn’t have to be a stressful experience. Instead, it can be enjoyable and successful. Follow these tips and you’ll be mixing fabrics like a pro in no time.

Find Your Inspiration

It’s important that you start with a fabric in a pattern or color you absolutely love because this will be your starting point. Everything else you incorporate into the room will revolve around this, so choose wisely. You want the room to feel right, and then only way you can accomplish this is to carefully select something that you connect with.

Choose Coordinates

To keep your room from looking or feeling overwhelming, stick with the rule of three. In other words, don’t exceed three different fabrics, unless you are really comfortable with adding in more. At best, four should be your absolute limit. To keep your fabrics fresh and personal incorporate different textures, gradients of contrast, a varied scale, a mix of sheens, and a grouping of complimentary patterns or colors.

Many people are afraid to mix their patterns, but there is absolutely no reason that you can’t! Yes, a floral, a plaid and a solid can go beautifully together if it’s done correctly and the way to do that is to stick with a common color. If blue is the foundation color, then the other fabrics should have that shade of blue somewhere in the pattern. This common color is what links each fabric choice together for a harmonious feel and a beautiful look to your room.

In regards to scale here are some easy tips to help you out:

  • Use small-scale patterns in smaller rooms so they aren’t mistaken for a texture or a solid. You want your beautiful choices to be seen.
  • Medium-scale patterns work for small and large rooms.
  • Stick with large-scale patterns for larger rooms and larger pieces of furniture. Large patterns can overpower a small room and appear fragmented on small pieces of furniture.
  • To add height or width to a piece, go for stripes. Your choice of vertical or horizontal will be based on what you want to accomplish.

Experiment

The great thing about picking fabrics is that you can play around with the swatches before making a final decision and purchase. Home decorating should be fun and experimenting with fabrics allows it to stay that way. It’s important look at your fabrics in different lighting, because what looks good in dim lighting might not look good in bright lighting. It’s also important to experiment with where these fabrics will go. As a general rule, don’t use all the fabrics in one area of the room. Instead, spread them around to create balance. For example, your main fabric choice might cover the sofa, while your other choices are used for throw pillows, drapery, lampshades or smaller pieces of furniture.

Put it Together

Now that you’ve made your choices, it’s time to put it all together. Be sure to take into consideration your walls and floor coverings when designing, as these are additional areas for colors and patterns. Remember, these are just guidelines to help you in your project, but if you need additional help, feel free to stop into one of our stores to talk with an associate. Have fun!

Once your chosen your colors to decorate with, come in to Interior Fabrics location in Houston. We have great staff that will help you find the fabrics you need, without having to spend a fortune.