Make an Impact with Texture

overall family room
Color and pattern definitely make a statement. Texture may not be as obvious, but the impact can be just as dramatic. Make conscious choices about how and where you add texture and your decor will thank you.

The Benefits of Texture

Texture adds dimension to a room. It appeals to our senses -- both visual and tactile -- which makes the room interesting. You can add texture on the floor with a rug, on the walls with a paint finish or a piece of art, in the room with a carved wooden table or a stone fireplace, and anywhere you use fabrics.

Establish Elegance

Texture for Traditional Style

Dress up decor with hand-tufted rugs, woven wools, smooth silks, fabric trims, gilded frames, cut crystal, and polished wood.

Create Comfort

Texture for Country Style

Create inviting interiors with layered rugs, chenille, ticking fabrics, weathered woods, and dimensional artwork.

Be Cool

Texture for Modern Style

Make an impact with shag rugs, smooth leather, sparse fabrics, light woods, glossy surfaces, and shiny metals.

Add Ambiance

Texture for Romantic Style

Charm rooms with hand-hooked rugs, embroidered fabrics, vintage lace, painted furniture and wicker, and flirty ruffles and trims.

Set the Mood

In addition to establishing style, you can use texture to create ambience. Choose soft, fine fabrics and embellished furniture for a feminine mood; use rustic metals and rich woods for a masculine feel. Silky pillows and velvet slipcovers make a space more formal, while denim slipcovers and corduroy pillows add an everyday comfy vibe.

Create a Focal Point

Every room needs a focal point from which to build its design. The item becomes a focal point because of its size, color, or unique design or shape. Texture also can make a piece noteworthy, such as this eye-catching lattice table.

Encourage Mingling

While color and pattern produce dramatic effects just by stepping into a room, texture demands a closer look. Combine a mix of textures in a concentrated area -- such as fabric trims on sofa pillows or a blend of glass, ceramic, and linen on the dining table -- to invite people to come closer, touch and feel, and instantly gather together.

Let Opposites Attract

Texture makes a big impact when you let opposites attract. Pit smooth against rough, sleek against nubby, and coarse against fine.

Harmonize a Room

Another approach is to blend textures of similar character to establish a soothing, peaceful scheme. In this living room, naturals, such as the woven shades, linen wallpaper and fabrics, and wicker accents, work together in harmony.

Textural Illusion

Texture doesn't have to be felt to be sensed. Painted patterns, such as this ornate stenciling, give the visual effect of texture even though it is created with flat paint.

Work Together

Repeat textures to balance a room. Pair a piece of wicker furniture with wicker baskets on a bookshelf across the room. Balance a leather sectional with stacks of leather-bound books. Here, the velvet chair enjoys the company of velvet curtains and a cut-velvet patterned rug.

Balance Color

Bold, saturated colors make such a strong statement that they are best partnered with sleek, smooth textures that don't compete for attention.

Transform a Space

Texture can have a strong influence. Use it to achieve the look you want despite the surroundings. Exposed brick walls, concrete ceilings, and visible plumbing drive a modern, industrial look in this loft. The strategic use of selected textures, such as warm woods and woven textiles, guide the home to a more soothing, classic feel.

Best in Moderation

Too much texture can clutter a space and dilute the effect, so be careful not to overdo. A neutral color scheme in this dining room keeps the textural elements -- the rug, wall molding, weathered table, and upholstery nailheads -- in check.

Add Architectural Elements

Molding is a timeless way to add subtle yet interesting texture to walls. In this restful bedroom, linear pieces of molding add texture that complements and soothes.

Play It Up

Have fun with texture. Energize a boring room by adding texture that draws attention. These unique metal chairs and interesting table transform a pleasant, everyday space into a conversation starter.

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