Global Textiles: Exotic Fabrics in Home Decor

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This month the focus is on traveler’s finds and today’s topic touches on global textiles. Our western design sensibilities have been heavily influenced by many of the exotic fabrics produced abroad, we know a great pattern when we see it! Introducing that “well traveled” look into your home decor is easy when you include any of these iconic patterns.


No need to venture to the countries where their origins are traced, capture the look of having visited an exotic souk or bazaar with just a few cleverly placed home accents such as these.


Ikat (pronounced “ee-cot”) means “to tie” or “to bind” and comes from the unique method of weaving threads that creates the iconic pattern of irregular and imperfect jagged geometric markings. In modern times, the motif is created through either woven or printing methods, and is readily available many colorways. This photo by Fawn Galli is a great example of incorporating ikat into your home.

Ikat Home Decor

1. Set of 2 Ikat Orange / Blue Square Decorative Boxes 2. Set of 2 Safavieh Bardot Tribal Ikat Throw Pillows 3. Tangine Khandara Jewel Armless Loveseat 4. Blue Ikat Giclee Apothecary Clear Glass Table Lamp

Suzani patterns include embroidered or printed tribal textiles from Uzbekistan, traditionally made by Central Asian brides for their dowry. Motifs include nature and circular medallions in repeating contrasting colorways, and in this hemisphere we now embrace these patterns in everything from printed bedding to exotic-inspired art shade lighting. The Sandberg Home (via Houzz) pictured below incorporates an exotic Suzani as a bedspread.

Suzani Patterned Home Decor

1. Adline Santa Maria Desert Flower Square Cocktail Ottoman 2. Set of 2 Safavieh Turquoise Sunder Needlework Pillows 3. Set of 2 Suzani Textural Natural White 18" Throw Pillows 4. Rangoli Sunrise 52" High Tapestry with Hanging Rod 


Moroccan inspired styles have been popular for a few years and you’ll recognize the curved trellis and lattice patterns that appear in a rhythmic geometric medley. ‘Moorish’ is another label used to describe the inlay or intricate mosaics that trace their history to the architecture of Islamic structures in the Middle East. Taylor Borasi used Moorish riles and an intricate inlaid wall mirror to capture to Moroccan look. 

Moroccan Prints in Lighting and Decor

1. Outdoor Collection Florin Blue Area Rug 2. Lauren Collection Accent Table 3. Moorish Pattern Ceramic Table Lamp 4. White Casbah 45" High Decorative Wall Mirror


Kilim patterns come from tapestry carpets woven in exotic motifs, combining warm tones or vivid contrasting hues in geometric patterns. Popular as prayer rugs and carpets, they also make durable textiles for upholstered ottomans and poufs. Kilim prints inspire the nomad in all of us; layer your home with any of these chosen accessories to capture the same traveler’s spirit. A kilim rug is a unique accent when layered over a neutral sisal or jute rug, as shown in this image from Amber Interior Design. 

Kilim Patterned Home Decor and Accessories

1. Set of 2 Bedouin Textural Earth Hues 18" Throw Pillows 2. Classic Home Sara Kilim Red Area Rug 3. Kilim Collection Salima Pouf Ottoman 4. Hidden Treasures Kilim Rug Bench

Whichever exotic fabrics you choose to inspire your home decor, any one of these global textiles is sure to bring the vibe of world traveler into your cozy and humble abode.

Image credits: Fawn Galli , The Sandberg Home via HouzzTaylor BorasiAmber Interior Design.

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  • Dear kate, hope you can make a great progress, i think this is a good chance for you to make a good design! best wishes

Global Textiles: Exotic Fabrics in Home Decor