Thinking about beginnings, and this new exploration of the internet as a place to share musings on design, I realized last night that I should probably delve a little into how design factors into my life and what are some of the things that I value in design. The first of these that I want to touch on is texture. It is so tightlywoven into my aesthetic that I don’t think I’ve ever contemplated a project without all sorts of textural elements, both tactile and visual. I was interviewed recently for a publication about our apartment and the design process, and I was asked to describe my style. I remember being pretty stumped by the question, sitting there in silence for a minute or so and then glancing at the writer with a quizzical look and saying, “textured modern?”. Right there in the middle of our apartment, she looked around, surveying all the architectural and design choices we had made, and nodded as if slowly seeing all the details that characterize this aesthetic.
If you could walk through our apartment, you’d see it too. There’s physical texture in the rough slate-covered fireplace, the felt loopy rug (unfortunately absent from these photos), the smooth, flat-front kitchen cabinetry, and the aptly named textured wall, with subtle varying depth from top to bottom. There’s also a ton of visual texture: a bold red door set against a very vivid Spanish printed wallpaper from Tres Tintas, a massive warm walnut overhang that extends over the kitchen to provide a visual demarcation of the space, the incredible patterned curtains (think MOMA, not paisley) that adorn the windows in our bedroom.
Wait, you’re thinking, these things aren’t examples of texture! But to me they are. If we take a working definition of texture as being changes in form that are noticeable by touch, to me, visual texture is changes in form that are noticeable by sight. It is perhaps most simply described as the way we visually play elements off each other in design.
And that’s precisely what’s all over our apartment: changes in form that are noticeable by touch or by sight. It’s equally what draws me to and impresses me about a space and I take immense pleasure in creating this texture through the use of different colors, materials, shapes, and forms.
In the next post, I share some of the design elements that I’m drawn to that aren’t in my own home, including some of the images that inspire me and that make me perpetually daydream about my next big renovation and redesign project. Until then…
A big shout out to ZeroEnergy Design for their architectural guidance on this renovation and to Eric Roth for the photography.