design trends

Suede and Velvet Upholstery Fabrics

Now here is a material we should all get on board with! Not only are these fabrics the BEST because of the way they feel when you touch and even wear them, they’re even better when you can enjoy the design when sitting in a beautifully upholstered chair, couch or stool!



We define suede as leather with a velvety napped finish. In short, it’s the soft and “fuzzy” part on the bottom of the leather. Suede can be made by either turning the upside down, revealing the suede portion OR splitting the leather, taking away the top grain showing only the underside. When using the first method for creating suede, expect to have a leather that is just as strong as full grain leather but with a different texture and feel. The second method creates the more common and desired suede that is used for some shoes, hats and interior decor.


One thing you want to remember about suede is that it has it’s purposes and you should only use it for those purposes. For example, introduce suede on a chair back. Because the backside of a chair, while visible, do not get too much use, so the suede will last longer. Not only does suede add an awesome texture and look in the space, it adds a sense of culture in the room!


There are multiple types of suede nowadays such as ultra-suede, sueded silk and microfiber suede that cater to the Vegan lifestyle. Just remember, the more wear and tear that suede is exposed to, the faster the “soft” and “fuzzy” parts disappear!



According to the dictionary, velvet is a closely woven fabric originally made from silk, but now can also be made with cotton or nylon, that has a thick short pile on one side. Velvet has been used in history for over a millenia. Originally it was all made by hand and buying velvet was expensive. This was to attract only the Royal and wealthiest of customers. Nowadays we use velvet for more than just clothing! Everything from sofas, chairs, bedding, and throw pillows are being used to class up hotel lobbies all over the world. Although it is a very sensitive material, velvet takes stylish and sophisticated to a different level!


Velvet can be made from silk, cotton, wool, linen, mohair, etc. and taking care of it can be pretty tricky! Due to the fact that velvet is so porous, exposing it to too much water can damage and even reduce the velvet taking away the soft feeling. 


These two materials obviously have a lot in common, but there is one main difference. Suede consists of leather and velvet does not! Suede has an advantage when it comes to objects such as shoes. Come on, Elvis Presley sang about blue suede shoes! Suede shoes are very common because, be honest, who doesn’t want soft-to-the-touch footwear? Velvet is used more for furniture and clothing. Velvet furniture, as we mentioned before, is used to create a more classy and stylish ambience.



Upholstering pieces of furniture with velvet or suede will make a place appear more upscale without giving off the vibe of being overpriced. Not to mention how soft and comfortable the material is. Bring this look into your space and you will lose track of the compliments within days!


Dark Wood, Bright Lights & Cork, Oh My!

Bright white and light-colored interior design will always work well to achieve a modern feel, but the darker themes with a few upgraded touches only continue to be a classic look.

Dark Wood

There is something about dark wood that gives off a comforting, feel-good, welcome home kind of vibe. Good thing there are so many places inside a hotel to incorporate this theme! Think about lining the inside of minibar cabinets with a dark wooden paneling or making the doors inside the guestrooms and suites a dark wood to create that luxury farmhouse feel. Fortunately, some naturally dark woods are considered hardwood which means that while they might be a bit heavier, they are incredibly stable and sturdy. Imagine walking into a room full of new-age, beautiful mahogany furniture. We can vouch that it immediately makes us want to smile! The darker wood is making a comeback, especially when it comes to hotels. The look creates a more organic and high-end picture that customers enjoy when they enter the door.



Bright Lights

When a space has a lot of dark decor, what is the best solution? Bright light! Although the Thomas Edison bulbs are largely in style at the moment, if the furniture and design has a dark tone, those lights will make the place appear more rustic and industrial and create an even darker tone. Unless you’re going for that look, we suggest brightening it up with items such as pendant lights in the kitchen over an island and/or a few chandeliers here and there through the walkway and dining room. It is better to have too many lights than not enough! Try installing dimmer lights throughout in order to change the mood lighting if it does get too bright.

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     Photo courtesy of   Petite Friture .

Photo courtesy of Petite Friture.


Cork, my friends, is IN! No, we are not talking about leftover wine corks that turn into DIY projects. More and more pieces of furniture and wall art are being made with cork. There are chairs, stools, benches, table tops, cabinets, lamp shades, etc. that are popping up all over the world. Of course, we cannot forget about the kitchen appliances as well. Some of these are made up of half ceramic and the upper (or lower) half guessed it...CORK! Who would have thought that this part of a tree would not only be used to keep wine fresh, but to furnish stylish spaces? Not only is it amazingly fashionable at the moment, but according to a 2008 study by Pricewaterhousecoopers, it is more environmentally friendly than the production of aluminum and plastic closures! Not to mention the little honeycomb looking pockets that you see, those pockets make cork buoyant and FIRE RESISTANT! that is multipurpose at its best.


Put It All Together

Now individually, these pieces are wonderful, but put them all into a theme for a house, hotel or even just one guestroom and you won’t ever want to leave! Adding in new pieces and upgrades to a dark wood themed hotel will not take away from the classic beauty it entails. It only enhances that warm and cozy vibe and makes everyone feel at home.