Choosing a fabric for your next home project?

Making a fabric choice can be a real challenge! “Where do I start? Will it go with my decor? What ‘feel’ am I looking for?” are some questions I’ve heard. Luckily there are some nifty tricks to get your brain to ‘see’ things from a new perspective.

Find out fun ways to make a fabulous fabric choice for your next home project

If you’re as much of a fabric lover as I am, maybe you’ve had this experience too: Whether shopping online or someplace like Mood Fabrics in NYC, you find yourself drooling over the delicious array of color, texture & pattern bombarding you from every direction. Pretty soon you’re in overload, and you find yourself wandering aimlessly through the choices, numbed to the point of “defaulting to beige” (No, please, not that!)

The day I made up my mind to ditch beige for good, I decided to make a game of seeking new ways to get inspired.

Here is one delightful design exercise I discovered along the way. Hint: it helps to write down the first thoughts that come into your head – quickly before your mind starts judging.

  1. Do a search to find images of Anthropologie window displays (I used Google image search).
  2. Choose one or two that inspire you and write down the first words that come to mind about each one.
  3. Search fabric images using those words, and see what comes up!

Today I used this game to find two nature-inspired fabrics. Here’s what I came up with:

A cork-themed window display made me think of organic, random dots, earth friendly. I searched Google images using different combinations of the words, including ‘earth friendly fabric’, ‘organic random dots fabric’ and found…

Find fabric inspiration in Anthropologie window displays. Earth Day window display inspires Victoria Larson's Stardust fabric

Anthropologie honors Earth Day each year by creating artful window displays made out of recycled materials – here recycled corks.

… this Victoria Larson Stardust fabric:

Find fabric inspiration in Anthropologie window displays. Earth Day window display inspires Victoria Larson's Stardust fabric

Victoria Larson’s Stardust fabric

This floral-themed window display brought mums to mind, and my search turned up…

Fun design exercise: How to find fabric inspiration in Anthropologie window displays. Example: Earth Day paper display inspires Nina Jizhar's Mum fabric

Anthropologie floral designed window display uses recycled paper.

… a golden mum fabric by Nina Jizhar:

Find fabric inspiration in Anthropologie window displays. Earth Day window display inspires Nina Jizhar's Swanky Swell Mum fabric

Nina Jizhar’s Mum fabric

This is a great practice to jump-start your brain in new directions.
Ready to try a few more design exercises? Check out this post for tips on choosing colors.

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Got a friend who needs a little inspiration? Here are a couple of infographics to share:
Here's a fun design exercise: Find fabric inspiration in Anthropologie window displays. In this example, Earth Day corks window display inspires Victoria Larson's Stardust fabricHere's a fun design exercise: Find fabric inspiration in Anthropologie window displays. In this example, Earth Day recycled paper window display inspires Nina Jizhar's Swanky Swell Mum fabric