What’s Trending Now: Cut Velvet

Cut velvet has been what’s trending in fashion and interior design lately,  largely due to the recent release of Baz Luhrmann’s movie, “The Great Gatsby” and the resurgence of Art Deco design in both fashion and interiors.  For this year’s Academy Awards, Madeline Stuart teamed up with Architectural Digest and Baker Furniture to design the Art Deco inspired Greenroom.  Several Hollywood stars and Oscar nominees also showed up to the Oscars outfitted in Art Deco inspired designs, and as we all know, the stars and their stylists are on top of each and every trend.  As is the case with most trends, they start slowly and trickle into the mainstream once they grace the pages of the tabloids walking down the red carpet.  For some reason, here in the US we are a culture of followers, and once the trends are “validated” by Hollywood, they are more easily embraced and accepted by the masses.
The 1920s was a time of decadence, grandeur, and excess,  and the “The Great Gatsby” wardrobe reflected that time period with the use of crystal and sequins, to provide the sparkle and shimmer that we associate with high class glamour.  However, one aspect that was overlooked in the movie, perhaps because movies tend to stylize the trends of the time, but was just as prominent during that time, was the use of cut velvet.  Cut velvet has a shine, but unlike crystals or sequins, it is a fluidity and shimmer that moves across the body as the light reflects off  the strands of filament.  Much more subtle, elegant, and demure than crystals or sequins, it is the “old money” solution to dressing, as it is refined and classy, but in a much less ostentatious  way.
Images from left to right: {The Curated Object   //  August Auctions  //  Etsy  //  Whitaker Auction  //  Antique Dress

Above are dresses from the 20s to early 30s, all in cut velvet.  Notice the subtle sheen and how the light reflects off of the fibers differently, depending on the angle of the the light.  These dresses could very well be right off this and last season’s runways!

Not only has cut velvet been trending in fashion, but since the trends in fashion and interiors oftentimes come hand in hand, it is no surprise that the cut velvet trend has made its way to interior design as well.   When used in interiors, cut velvet conveys luxury and opulence without being too over the top.

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I am absolutely in love with the sofa above – especially the scale of the motif.  It is so luxurious and I love the abundance of highlights and shadows. This sofa, as decadent as it is, could as easily belong in a traditional room setting as in a contemporary setting.  And the aubergine pillows?  Simply divine.

Photography by Jeanne Chung

Above is a detail shot of the cut velvet I have on the two Barbara Barry chairs in my own living room.  The room is not particularly bright, but I love how the light peeks through the paned windows and highlights the nap on the velvet.

Image on left, One King’s Lane, Image on right is from Four Hands, photographed by Jeanne Chung

On the right is a 1920s porter’s chair upholstered in a geometric cut velvet motif.  On the left is a more contemporary chair upholstered in the same cut velvet motif.

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The dots above are so subtle yet so rich.  Again, traditional or contemporary interior, take your pick. It works with either style.

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From AERIN, Aerin Lauder’s new fabric collection for Lee Jofa.  If you missed my coverage last week, you can see it HERE in detail. (The coordinating embroideries can’t be missed!)

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From Brunschwig and Fils’ “Le Jardin Chinois” collection (more on the entire “Le Jardin Chinois” collection and my visit to Brunschwig and Fils’ New York design studio in a future blog post , so stay tuned)

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The size and scale of these coordinated geometric cut velvet motifs from Osborne and Little are divine!
And let’s not forget that cut velvet chairs were a big trend at High Point in April.  Three of my favorite chairs were cut velvet and you can see them HERE

And a sampling of some of my favorite cut velvets currently on the market:

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P.S.  Stay tuned – In the next few days I’ll be having a giveaway sponsored by Valspar Paints and HGTV Magazine, so be sure to subscribe to Cozy•Stylish•Chic so that the most recent posts are delivered to your email or feed reader and you don’t miss the details.

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