As a resource, Maharam Fabrics (for decades a “go-to” source for contract textiles) is often overlooked by residential designers because they are generally used by the hospitality design community. I have long been an advocate of their unique and lustrous designs for home applications. Contract fabrics are specifically tested for their ability to withstand wear and tear, and are often treated for stain resistance or to make them fire retardant. Why then, if the design and weave of an individual textile is suitable for a movie hotel or restaurant, would it not be an excellent choice for the sofa in a child friendly living room? In these economic times, don’t we all endeavor to select products for our homes which provide high style and longevity? What does it matter that it was designed to withstand abuse if it’s beautiful?
For me, Maraham’s most appealing group of fabrics are in The 20th Century Collection. Here you will find glorious re-editions of enduring designs from some of the twentieth century’s most noted visionaries; from Gio Ponti to Charles and Ray Eames, and many in between. Some stayed and sedate, others bright and whimsical, there is something for everyone. While many designer fabrics carry a significant price point, Maharam’s fabrics are in the moderate range; which allows everyone the opportunity to access remarkable design. You can navigate their user friendly website to view all the fabrics in the collection easily, and order samples upon request.
My personal favorite from The 20th Century Collection, Design 9297 by Josef Hoffmann. shown in 005 Scarlet, and 007 Peacock
The first slipper chair dates back to the Queen Ann era—the first half of the 18th century. The chair featured an upholstered seat and back and cabriolet legs, which are curved and typically feature a pad foot. Originally defined as a small bedroom chair, the slipper chair has slowly made its way into the rest of the home, evolving from a fussy boudoir decoration to a contemporary accent chair. Perhaps the most famous re-boot of the slippers design came from Billy Baldwin in the mid-1950’s for his client Pauline de Rothschild. Mr. Baldwin’s cut-out at seat height allowed for a loose cushion to be recessed into the back, a tailored and masculine touch.
The tasteful eye of the curators at 145 Antiques in New York City have a marvelous example of how 19th century French designers saw the iconic piece. Beautiful cut velvet, long multicolored bullion fringe over turned and castor caped legs, and an elegantly scrolled high back make this chair elegant, and functional. If (as legend has it) this chairs original function was for putting on and removing shoes, I for one would welcome it bedside, or near my front door.
27 West 20 Street
New York, NY 10011, USA
This is the living room of my cottage upstate, in Claverack NY.
I decorated my house with 76 different fabrics, all shades of green. The sofa (which I also designed and built) was covered in a wool boucle from Unika Vaev, the plaid pillow fabric is also my design (gros grain ribbon on linen). Perhaps the best find in the room was the dyed burlap I used for the roman shade, from Rosebrand supplies in NYC, it was $6.00 per yard!