Wednesday, September 30, 2009

The Beauty of Tapestries

Houses are getting bigger and that usually means more wall space and higher ceilings.  Sometimes it can be hard to decorate these areas, but have you ever considered using a tapestry?

Tapestries are a form of textile art, woven onto a loom so that both sides are a complete work.

They add, color, character and warmth, choose them just like you would a piece of art, it needs to "talk to you" or it's not the right piece.

Tapestries usually will be the most significant decorative element in your room.

In the world of tapestries, most come from Europe.  Nowadays, reproductions if done right are just fine...If you are lucky enough to buy an original just remember it will cost you.

Okay, this next part gets wordy but I think it needs to be said so you can make wise choices in selecting your tapestry.....

The best reproductions out there are the custom designs followed by hand wovens.  Next are the Jacquard woven wool designs followed by the Jacquard woven cotton.  Somewhere between them in quality and value is serigraph or silk screened tapestries.

Hand Wovens are woven on looms by hand, ha I guess you could've figured that out by the name.  Usually these are wool or wool and silk.  They have very fine details with a dense or extra fine weave.  Their price is dictated by how much time, skill and materials are involve.

Jacquard Wovens are woven on looms as well but use a semi-mechanical process using perforated cards that feed colored threads.  This process is a lot faster which reduces the cost of production without hurting the quality.

Silk screened or serigraph tapestries are painted images on irregularly woven wool or linen which gives the tapestry more of an "authentic" look.  It is still a semi-mechanical process which includes hand painting to finish the details.  Compared to woven tapestries, they have a faded, antique look.

A tapestry should be scaled to the room and the wall. Here's a good rule of thumb:  It should occupy 80% (or more) of the intended space.  Oh and tapestries look best when you are apx. 8'-10' away from it so you can see the full depth of the weave and appreciate the color more.

Tapestries have a very interesting history, if you would like to learn more about them click on tapestries

If you have decorated with tapestries before or plan on it please leave me a comment and let me know all about it.


Kathy @ Creative Home Expressions said...

I've recommended tapesteries to clients, but haven't done it for them myself, and don't know if they went that route later. Some areas are perfect for it. I would love to have the chance to actually see it go into a decorating plan.

Vitania said...

It's kind of a lost art! I rarely see these in design nowadays (sp?), but think they could really make a brilliant comeback with updated patterns and colours.

You got me thinkin..