The HGTV Home Studio interns were hard at work during the first quarter here at HGTV Headquarters to create yet another eye-catching display, focusing on both current and iconic design trends. The Home Studio university co-op program allows Scripps Networks to work with up-and-coming designers who offer unique takes on interior design. Throughout the process, University of Cincinnati students Alison Donner and Diana Stercula worked closely with Vern Yip and other HGTV design experts to help expand their concepts and build a larger-than-life interactive vignette.
Discover more about the rising global textiles trend and the age-old Klismos chair, and see how they both come together in one surprising (and vibrant) display.
Left: Diana Stercula + global textiles; Right: Alison Donner + Klismos chair
A Taste of Culture: Global Textiles, A Rising Trend
When imagining her concept for the display, Diana knew she wanted to do something with bold patterns. Rather than focus on a specific pattern, she chose to speak to the global textiles trend as a whole and create a broader representation. If you look at the vignette from both ends (scroll down to see the other side), you’ll notice eight different patterns, from Ikat (the pattern in the canopy) to Suzani (the colorful, floral rug). Because there are several different patterns in one tiny area, Diana mixed smaller patterns with larger patterns to ensure balance and proper scale within the space.
To Diana, good design equals controversy. If the design isn’t raising eyebrows, turning heads and bringing people out of their decorating comfort zone, then it isn’t doing its job. By combining so many patterns and colors, she knew she was going to get some questions and comments from viewers: “How do you know which patterns to mix?” “How do you keep patterns from clashing or looking busy?” “I could never do this in my home.”
She knew just how to respond. Here are some of Diana’s top tips for successfully combining patterns like a pro:
- When using multiple patterns, make sure they share a dominant color; patterns that normally clash can be unified by threading a common color between them.
- To avoid too many patterns from becoming overly busy, be sure to choose patterns of various scales to create balance.
- Limit the use of pattern to one or two larger (focal) pieces, such as a pair of chairs, combined with a few smaller splashes, such as pillows or artwork.
- Use pops of solid color to highlight the one or two color threads and add visual relief when multiple patterns are used.
Diana’s biggest piece of advice, though: “Don’t be afraid to put a fuchsia wall in your living room,” she says. “Adding a patterned pillow or wall is a way to add pattern in your space, even in a small way, and you can always scale it back to your comfort zone if you need to.”
A Taste of History: Klismos Chair, A Classic Icon
For her portion of the display, Alison chose to focus on an iconic design trend: the Klismos chair. The chair is roughly 2,500 years old and still prevalent in contemporary designs today. Yes, you heard me right, 2,500 years old! So, how can a 2,500-year-old style find itself in contemporary and modern designs? A true Klismos will always follow a certain form, but through the years, the materials, upholstery, size and function have altered to make it appeal to various design styles.
“There are so many modern representations of the Klismos chair that people don’t know where the form came from and that it’s still being used today,” says Alison. “Everyone has seen one, but they just didn’t know they were looking at a Klismos chair.”
How do you know you’re looking at a Klismos chair? Alison shares three determining factors:
- Curved tablet back: Wide and curved, high enough to support the shoulders
- Curved back stiles: Continuing up from the curved back legs
- Four splayed legs: Legs curved out to create a stable and strong base
In her display, Alison brought in three different styles of Klismos chairs to show how the design may vary but the overall form remains the same. The wooden Klismos chair (above, right image) is a more traditional form with the wide, curved back, back stiles and curved legs. The white chair (above, left image), is a more Scandinavian-modern representation; you can tell it’s a Klismos by the soft, curved back and angled legs. (You’ll start seeing Klismos chairs everywhere now – trust me.)
Want to know how to add this timeless and versatile beauty into your space? Whether you lean towards modern, traditional or eclectic, you can bring this classic chair into your home in some way. Alison shares a few tips to get you started:
If your style is modern…
- Look for chairs with new, different materials like metal or acrylic.
- Consider using a Klismos for a less traditional function, such as a desk chair.
If your style is traditional…
- Use Klismos chairs made of wood, like how the chairs were originally created.
- Use chairs for a more traditional function, such as dining chairs.
If your style is eclectic…
- Find Klismos chairs with unique details, such as hand-painted or turned front legs.
- Mix chairs with pieces in different materials; if you have wood chairs, use a metal or acrylic table, for example.
So, how would you bring either one of these design trends into your home? Would you start small with a patterned pillow or go bold with Ikat wallpaper? How about the Klismos chair – are you dying to add a set around your dining room table, or do you already own this type of chair and just didn’t know until now? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below.