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Chic Decor

Nadia Ali shows creative ways to decorate your home using fabrics.

The choice and use of fabric can impart a touch of different worlds into your home. It can convey a country’s traditions, culture and history – from the rich colours of fabric made on traditional looms in Morocco to the high quality oriental brocade from China. The use of fabric for interior decorating no longer means just changing the curtains.


There are numerous creative ways of employing textile materials in your home to up that oomph factor. Firstly, you need to decide on your decor budget as this will determine the type of fabric you can get creative with. Secondly, pick the prints to work with. Prints and patterns from India or Africa are most suitable if you wish to bring an ethnic element to your home. The latest trend in interior decorating involves featuring vibrant, strong colours that are complimented by earthy tones such as dark greens or browns. Once the selection is done, use the following ideas for fabulous fabric treatments and give your home a lively new look in just one weekend.


Window treatment
When you look at your windows, do they look neglected? So how about changing the look you have had for years by adding some stylish valances, shades or new panels? Pay attention to the types of curtain headings, namely pencil-piped, tab-topped or eyelet style. The fabric you use can soften a room creating a pastel romantic effect or add a dramatic statement with the use of bold colours that strike an impression. Don’t be afraid of mixing different types of fabrics and patterns. Simply choose a solid base colour, then mix patterned, plaid, checks or plain, incorporating the base colour and draw out the beauty of your home.


Wall hangings
For a timeless and elegant touch to your walls, hang a piece of fibre art or textile art. Historically, it was used to enhance luxurious surroundings covering entire walls in rich movable panels. You too can create this feel in your home by choosing textiles from mid-century modern, vintage, contemporary or even explore parts of early Islamic textiles. There are many Islamic wall hangings that can be sourced to compliment your interior style. The varieties include subtle arabesques and Islamic calligraphy design. Pattern tapestry of needlework, cross stitch or crochet is also very popular and made of high quality materials, which will lend interest to any wall.


When you think about your bedding does it make you yawn? Liven up your bedroom by reworking the focal point of your room – the bed. Change your bed linens according to the kind of look you want. There are modern, cottages, classic or contemporary styles to choose from. Pick a base colour you are comfortable with using and mix and match around the room using accessories for a dramatic transformation.


Fabric embellishments
You can also have fun with fabrics by creating smaller decorating enhancements that breathe new life into your home. Create or buy your own scented sachets which are small fabric bags that contain potpourri, spices or your favourite attar sprinkled on some fabric tucked inside. It will add a whisper of fragrance to the household, rooms, closet or drawers. Another idea is to embellish tissue boxes by making or buying a stylish rectangular or square fabric cover for a cardboard box. Buy some fabulous throw cushions with vibrant graphic prints to spruce up your living-room suite. Get a batik inspired tablecloth to bring flair to your dining room. There are numerous ethnic prints to liven up your house such as Festive Folk, Asian Accents, Moroccan Eclectic or even Tribal Safari. Only your imagination is the limit when it comes to creatively using fabrics. So, come on, swirl that fabric, get crafty and add some pizzazz to your home!



Nadia Ali is a freelance writer born in London, UK and now living in the Caribbean. Her work has appeared both online and in print. Her publishing credits include MuslimGirl Magazine, SISTERS Magazine, Muslim Kids Journal and Azizah Magazine.