Textile Spotlight: Tartan

November 19th, 2013

I thought I’d start a periodic series spotlighting textile patterns since fabric design is so much on my mind right now. Let’s begin with tartan since it’s trending again. It’s a cloth that has been around for centuries, but these iconic patterns are showing up everywhere from home decor to fashion.

Classic tartan is made with alternating bands of dyed thread woven together to form diagonal lines where the colors cross over and resulting in blocks of color in distinctive squares. Originating in Scotland, the woven patterns were at first regional and then later representative of clans, and by the 17th and 18th century, tartan was characteristic of Scottish Highland dress.

tartan throw

Recent press releases from American design houses declare new lines of tartan are being released since the woven pattern is returning to popularity, but classic tastemakers like Ralph Lauren have always carried it here in the States. The word “plaid” is used interchangeably with “tartan” so in retail so you’ll often find the tartan weave labeled as plaid.

I love tartan on upholstered accent chairs or as accent pillows, the rich colorful prints bring a masculine touch and the traditional pattern adds a sense of comfort.

tartan chair house beautiful

allesandra schumacher

house beautiful / quintessence


Tartans and plaids will always be classic, they’re impactful when allowed to take the spotlight, from bedding to window treatments.

tartan bedding tobi fairley

tartan window panels

tartan window panels sitting room

tartan plaid throw elle decor

 tobi fairley / burnham design / elle decor / hudson interior design


Read the rest of this entry »

DIY Wrapping Paper Bunting

November 18th, 2013

I love this project because not only is it fun for the “holly day” season (ha!) but the same supplies and process can be used to make bunting for any festive occasion, birthdays, anniversaries, baby showers, kids rooms, and no sewing!

This festive slogan was made with cardboard from cereal boxes, wrapping paper, and glitter cardstock, and it’s easy enough for kids to help too. Details on how to make your own version below!

diy wrapping paper holiday bunting


The supplies are simple and cheap! To recreate, you need a roll of wrapping paper, cereal boxes for the pennants, enlarged letter template, glitter cardstock paper, tape (single sided and double sided), twill ribbon, hot glue, scissors.



Read the rest of this entry »