Simply put, if luxury were a fabric, velvet would be it. The soft, sumptuous look and feel exudes decadence—as if it were cut from the cloth of kings. And while it may seem to belong best in a royal palace, when used in a room with other materials or iterated in interesting ways, it can be as appropriate for a casual den as it is for a formal receiving room.
And there is a reason interior designers love to work with it. “Velvet adds so much richness and depth to a room; it’s one of my favorite fabrics to work with,” says Laura Hammett, of Laura Hammett interior-design studio in London. “It’s wonderfully tactile and indulgent. There are also so many versions of it that have very different qualities depending on the aesthetic of the design.”
The beauty of this plush fabric is its versatility—as sofa fabric, as upholstered pillows or loungers, or as curtains. Velvet isn’t a one-trick textile. Fabrication ranges from mohair, silk, cotton, and matte to crushed and devoré—a process by which the pattern is burned off the velvet to create the design.
Working with this luxe textile is as much about balance as it is creativity.