How to Use Texture in Your Home

Like that subtle spice in your favorite recipe, adding an element of texture to your room designs is a key ingredient to making the finished result a knock out. While you may have begun decorating with an overall plan – What colors should I choose? How will the room function? Who will be using it? – ignoring this last flourish can mean the difference between a room looking flat and lifeless to one that has depth and brings the entire scheme together.

blue and gray living room decor

St Ives Bookcase

In fact, using texture – whether you love a more minimalist look or crave a warm rustic space – is one of the most powerful things you can do to finish off your room in style. Today’s tips will help you to navigate how and what textures to add to your room when designing your interior scheme.

What is meant by texture in interior design?

Gray footstool with log background

Typically, when we refer to texture, we’re talking about the surface quality of a material and especially those that stand out from what’s around it. It can come from a wide variety of sources – from an exposed brick wall or an embossed pattern on a lamp base, to a soft woolly throw or a wood coffee table.

Essentially, everything has a texture but we’re particularly discussing those with a more tactile quality. Think about how it feels to run your fingers across a Mongolian sheepskin rug or the rugged feeling of a natural stone floor. Whether we have physical contact with an object or not, we can perceive the way it might feel even without touching it.

Cranbrook Coffee Table / French Farmhouse Nested Tables

While texture may just be an afterthought in terms of the functionality of a room, it’s still vital to the success of the finished design. It will determine the mood and feeling of the final look and goes a long way in creating a space with depth and warmth.

Embracing Contrasts with Texture

Gray painted office desk

Kemble Office Desk

One of the easiest ways to add texture to your room is to consider what’s already there and look for a texture that contrasts it. This contrast will add interest and depth to your room and will create small focal points that draw the eye and balance out your space.

If you have a deep pile fluffy rug in your living room, you may want to contrast that with a sleek glass console table. A tactile velvet cushion could look wonderful against a worn leather chair. A faux fur throw may be the perfect finishing touch for a rustic wood dining room bench.

rustic oak dining room table in purple room

Original Rustic Display Cabinet / Original Rustic Dining Table

These subtle differences in texture will make your room sing, so play with different textures to see what looks the most visually pleasing. Remember to not go overboard with it, however – a subtle variation of hard and soft, rough and smooth is enough. Too much and you’ll overload the senses with a lot of conflicting sensations, so limit the number of contrasting textures to just a few for the biggest impact.

Adding Texture to Your Home

gray painted chest of drawers against red wall

St Ives Dresser

There are multiple ways of adding texture to your space, so you may want to start by thinking about which areas have the most surface area first – walls and floors.

If you are lucky enough to have architectural features like crown molding, chair rails and paneling in your home, these can be a great start to giving a room some visual interest and texture. Similarly, exposed brick walls or textured wallpaper like grasscloth will give walls depth and warmth.

exotic wood shelving unit

Mantis Light Display Unit

An area rug or carpet is another large-scale texture that you may wish to consider adding to your room. Whether it’s a deep Beni Ourain rug to add softness and a feeling of coziness or a large jute rug to give a space a rustic touch, any large textile will contribute to the mood of the space.

Similarly, natural stone tiles or marble tiles will add a cooling feature to a room which you may want to contrast with warmer and softer textures as well.

white painted coffee table

Shay Coffee Table

Next, consider your furniture. From a wooden dining table to a small velvet bench, your furniture will also play a distinct role of the finished feeling and mood of your room design.

Finally, consider smaller textiles and accessories. Texture can be added via things like sofa pillows, a fringed lampshade, a ceramic vase or a marble candlestick. Even plants and flowers can be used to add organic texture to a space.

How will you use texture in your home? Share it with us on Twitter @USAOakFurniture or share using #OakFurnitureland on Instagram.

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