Ikat adds international flair to interior design

An ikat design from Magnolia Fabrics

Those who like to decorate with an international flair are no doubt aware of the ongoing popularity of ikat (pronounced ee-kät) fabrics. Ikat is a fabric in which the yarns have been tie-dyed before weaving. The resulting fabric has a distinctive and almost blurred look, as if the colors have bled, and some aficionados feel ikat lends a Bohemian air to decor.

According to Elle Decor magazine, “The earliest existing examples are fragments found in the Middle East that date from the 10th century. However, ikatlike fabrics appear in 7th-century Indian cave paintings, and though scholars cannot agree on its exact origin, the technique has roots throughout Asia and Africa. But while their provenance is subject to debate, their verve and versatility are not.”

Today’s ikats are often printed fabric designs, making them much less labor intensive and therefore more affordable fabrics to use. The ikat sample shown above is from Magnolia Fabrics and is one of many ikats available in our design library at Panoply. If you need help selecting ikats for your home, just give us a call and we’ll be glad to assist you.

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