Add colour, pattern and texture with fabrics

Every home needs to incorporate colour and pattern; whether it's introduced by fabrics, rugs, wallpaper or accessories. Fabrics are a wonderful way to add colour, pattern and texture to a home - for any season and decor style.


If you are looking for ways to introduce colour into your home, being able to spruce up living spaces with fabrics is a wonderful way to freshen up a tired room. With fabrics you not only add colour, but also patterns and textures. Whether you shop around at your favourite fabric stores for what's hot and trending, or buy ready-made accessories from a home decor store.

You can use fabric to soften a room, add atmosphere and personality, or for a total refresh and fabric can be used in any room style - on any budget!  Light fabrics like silk or cotton can soften a room and add elegance, while textural fabrics such as burlap or damask can lend a more rustic, homely touch.


Unless you are going for a formal setting, keep window treatments light and airy.  Use tab-top or eyelet curtains to soften your windows rather than pleated curtains. And if you are working on a tight budget, shop for flat sheets and simply add a couple of tabs as the top for an instant refresh that won't break the bank!

Affordable sources for fabric for decorating a room include using flat sheets and tablecloths from discount home stores, or specials from the bargain bin at your local fabric store. Fabric scraps are perfect for turning into colourful cushion covers and your can collect different fabrics to have fun with.

Consider raising the height of a curtain rod to add height to a room. A higher rod and longer curtains draw the eye upwards, visually fooling the eye into thinking that a ceiling is higher.



Lightweight, fresh fabrics is a useful design trick for changing the look of a room without having to replace paint or re-upholster furniture. New rugs, cushions or tablecloths can make a big difference – and you can make them yourself if you want to save some money.

Patterns are a wonderful way to bring a room to life with movement, shape and colour. If you find it difficult to make a decision about the colour or pattern for fabric, take your cues from a great piece of fabric that catches your eye then use the fabric as a guide to introducing the same colours and designs throughout the room. Or be eclectic and mix up colours and patterns.

Fabrics can make your decor a wonderful, soft, textural place to be. Fabrics are a necessary part of any room. Use them to create a new look for your home.

Make a small room feel larger with a combination of solids and stripes and a dash of pattern. These three fabrics should share at least one colour and be distributed around the room to best advantage. For example: The stripes on the wall and ceiling of this attic room (above) fool the eye into thinking that the walls and ceiling are higher. The checks and gingham patterns tie the colours together throughout the room.

Mix and match with cushion covers that bring together colours in the room. If you have pattered curtains make up a small throw pillow using the same fabric for a cohesive decor scheme. Cushions are easy and affordable to make, or reasonably inexpensive to buy ready made and can even be changed out with the seasons or replaced for an instant refresh!

 Here are a few guidelines for incorporating coloured and patterned fabrics into a room:


  • Mix up patterns that share the similar or similar hues.
  • Take your colour cues for painting the room from the main colour in the pattern
  • When using a monochromatic (single) colour in a room, allow pattern and texture to add interest

 Mix up patterns:

  • Don't be afraid to mix up stripes, checks and florals with plain fabrics. When incorporating stripes and pattern, let plains dominate and patterns add interest if you want to avoid overpowering the room.
  • Use larger patterns on bigger pieces or place an oversized print on a small item for more impact