Linen – Interior Design’s Wonder Fabric

Classic interior design often includes linen. It is ancient in origin, made from the fibres of the flax plant, and is one of our very earliest fabrics. Used as a symbol of affluence and even used as currency, its strength and durability have allowed it to stand the test of time. Even with its connotations of wealth, it is easy to care for.  If you were searching for the perfect fabric for your interior design project update, much of what you’d look for is present in linen. Legendary comfort as well as strength and beauty are what attract us. Linen has been preferred for centuries as a canvas for fine oil paintings due to its strength and durability. We would not have the works of the Grand Masters today had it not been for the unique qualities of linen. Linen is one of the world’s oldest textiles, being used in Eqypt about 5000 B.C. It is much stronger and glossier than cotton. The English word “line” is derived from the fact that linen thread was originally used to determine a straight line.elegant relaxed uoscale living room with dark leather sofa and linen window shade When used for draperies, linen, like silk,  has an aristocratic elegance. Draperies made from linen will last for years and look great while doing it.  Linen has a natural lustre. It could be called a living fabric because it absorbs humidity, and air flows through it, providing privacy and relief from the heat of summer cool in summer. This characteristic of absorbing humidity also causes linen to expand and contract with seasonal changes so if you are the type of home owner who must have everything just so, linen is not for you. Linen draperies will lengthen and shorten slightly with changes in the weather and it does have a tendency to wrinkle. Draperies used in interior decorating and design can be designed to remain stationary, thus avoiding this effect.      linen semi-sheer draperies with wing chairLinen can be bleached to pure white and table linens of high quality are made from linen. The natural colour of linen ranges from ivory and ecru to tan and gray. Linen has anti-allergenic properties, so it can be used next to the skin in bed linens. Bed linens made from pure linen feel soft and natural. They can stand up to years of washing and become softer in feel and appearance over the years. The natural wrinkled look is part of the charm. Linen will shrink a little when it’s tumble dried so excessive drying is discouraged. In fact, it is recommended that custom draperies never be washed or even dry cleaned. No matter how carefully it is done, they will simply never hang as beautifully ever again. They should be vacuumed regularly and that is now difficult to do. This wonderful fabric works well year-round, keeping us warm in winter and cool in summer. Relaxed, yet elegant style in home decorating can be achieved through the use of this impressive material.contemporary mulberry plum linen sofa with chaise in small living room with dramatic grey abstract artworkIt is an earthy, tactile, yet sophisticated fabric. The fibers are long, up to 150 centimetres long, and extremely strong, so the fabric does not fray or rub. When an interior designer uses linen fabrics in upholstery, we gain durability five times more resistant to abrasion than cotton. Also, linen does not pill or stretch.   paired transitional chairs in cream fabric with tall silver grey draperies  Another desirable characteristic is linen’s resistance to static electricity. Condo dwellers may be attracted to this quality to help compensate for the dryness of electric heat. Linen makes exceptional quality table linens…hence the traditional term for cloth items used in table settings. wide view of upscale living room with beige linen sofa, bird motif toss cushions, and slope arm armchairFade resistant and colour fast, mildew and moth resistant, as well a non-allergenic, linen used in contemporary or traditional interior decorating is an impressive tool (photos courtesy of Better Homes). With this impressive array of practical physical attributes, linen more than makes up for its tendency to wrinkle and fluctuate in size.        elegant home with custom black sheer linen window shades  Since 1993 Mulberry Interiors, headed by colour specialist, Marguerite Roberts, has been creating residential interiors in Oakville, Mississauga, Burlington, Brampton, Milton, Georgetown, Etobicoke, western Toronto, North York, and Vaughn. We specialize in residential interior design and decorating and are at our most creative when we use colour as our theme. We offer a full range of interior design services such as fine furnishings, custom window treatments, including blinds and shutters, choosing paint colours, space planning, soft furnishings, area carpets, artwork and accessories. Call Mulberry Interiors now at (905) 849-6423 to book a consultation. We look forward to working with you to increase your enjoyment of your home.

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